Australian Association for Caribbean Studies Seminar Series 2021: Violence and Meaning in the Caribbean

Hosted by the University of Newcastle, NSW, in association with the Centre for the Study of Violence.

Offers of papers for the 2021 AACS Seminar Series are due no later than 30 January 2021. Proposals should be 300 words in length, accompanied by a 200-word biography. Papers will be 15 minutes in duration. We also especially encourage proposals for panel discussions. Please send your submissions to

In response to the difficulties incurred by COVID 19 a full conference is not possible. Instead the committee have decided that a seminar series would be an effective forum to be held every second Thursday, beginning Thursday 4th March, from 9am to 10.30 am via ZOOM. We especially hope that scholars from overseas might be able to take part given the time delays etc.  There will be eight sessions in total involving three, 15-minute papers and discussion. There will be a keynote for the first session and an AGM at the end of the final session. As with a conference, there will be a fee for speakers and delegates, with discounted rates for students and unsalaried participants.  We do hope you will enjoy this format as a rewarding opportunity to remain connected to the AACS as we all navigate these trying times.

The AACS therefore invites panels or individual papers on the theme of Violence and Meaning in the Caribbean. As always proposals from all areas of Caribbean Studies will be considered and colleagues are welcome to submit abstracts outside of the theme. For 2021 the seminar organisers encourage participants to think about how violence and meaning shape or have shaped our understanding of the Caribbean.

Violence is, and has always been, an inextricable aspect of Caribbean life, both in the past and the present. Indigenous conflict, the establishment of slavery, the colonisation of the Caribbean over several centuries and the often-bitter struggles for independence, in many ways built the islands and region that we know today. Violence remains a vital part of Caribbean folklore, music and art. It looms large in the past as much as it is all too real in the present.  Given this, can we extricate meaning from violent events, peoples and spaces, both historically and in the present? How do the myriad Caribbean cultures, genders, ages and identities navigate shifting times and how is violence and its many meanings expressed?

We therefore invite proposals on the theme of Violence and Meaning in the Caribbean, including but not limited to, the topics mentioned above. The seminar series is interdisciplinary, so again we welcome proposals from diverse range of research backgrounds and interests.

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