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Call for Papers - 2020-21 Graduate Workshop Series

2020-2021 Academic Year
Application Deadline: Mon. July 13, 2020 (Deadline Extended)
Send to:

The Andrea Mitchell Center for the Study of Democracy invites paper proposals for its Annual Graduate Workshop Series at the University of Pennsylvania. We welcome submissions by doctoral students (PhD, JSD, SJD, etc.) from any university and discipline whose research explores the controversies, dilemmas, and promises of democratic society.

The Center provides an interdisciplinary venue for graduate students to present their research and receive constructive scholarly feedback. By placing papers in conversation with each other across disciplinary boundaries, we hope to provoke new ways of thinking about the implications of democracy and citizenship. We encourage papers that interrogate democracy and citizenship from any of the following dimensions and beyond:

Tensions over definitions and practices of democracy
Citizenship and political membership
Responses and resistance to political institutions
Comparative analyses across national contexts
Law and public policy
Economic inequality and social stratification
Issues of race, gender, religion, and sexuality
Cultural memory and public history
Media and social movements
Battles over free speech and “fake news”

You can find titles of papers presented at the Graduate Workshop in past years here.

The Andrea Mitchell Center’s Graduate Workshop is a yearlong series held once a month between September 2020 and May 2021. Two graduate students, usually from different fields, present their papers at each meeting. Presentations are approximately 10 minutes per paper, followed by a group discussion. Papers must be submitted three weeks in advance of the workshop to be circulated. Papers should be no more than 25 double-spaced pages.

Applications are due July 3rd, 2020 to Please send:

1. An abstract of up to 300 words including a working title for the paper and up to 5 keywords connecting your project to the aforementioned themes,
2. A brief statement that indicates your discipline and institution, and
3. Three workshop dates (mentioned below) that suit your availability, in order of preference.

Dates for the Graduate Workshop Series, 2020 and 2021
*Reminder: your paper must be ready to be submitted three weeks prior to the workshop date*

September 23, 2020
October 28, 2020
November 18, 2020
December 9, 2020
January 20, 2021
February 17, 2021
March 17, 2021
April 14, 2021

In previous years, we have conducted our sessions in person. However, given the uncertainty in light of the COVID-19 crisis, at this time we are planning to conduct our workshops over Zoom. We held several successful virtual workshops this spring, which allowed us to bring together students and faculty from a broader range of universities and institutions. Even if normal university operations resume in the fall or spring, we will maintain the options for virtual meetings and participants will not be required to travel for the workshop. Travel to Philadelphia will not be a requirement to present at any of the 2020-21 workshops.

In the event travel is possible, we will be unable to provide funding for travel or accommodations. Feel free to contact us with any questions, and we look forward to hearing from you!