21-24 ноября 2013г. в Бостоне состоится ежегодная КонвенцияASEEES (Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies – formerly the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies), своего рода “смотр сил” в сфере гуманитаристики, социальных наук и славянских/восточноевропейских исследований. Этот раздел журнала The Bridge-MOCT освещает предстоящее событие. Мы публикуем письмо исполнительного директора ASEEES Линды Парк, подготовленное специально для читателей журнала и посвященное Конвенции; интервью с Президентом ASEEES (в то время – AAASS) в 2002-2003 гг. профессором Уильямом Розенбергом; информацию о секциях, спонсированных МАГ в рамках Конвенции; а также список издательств, которые будут представлены на Конвенции.
Join the ASEEES 45th Annual Convention in Boston on November 21-24, 2013
On November 21-24, over 2,200 scholars, students, publishers and other specialists in Eurasian and Eastern European studies from around the world will gather in Boston for the 45th annual convention of the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES), held at the Boston Marriott Copley Place. Featuring 443 panels, 106 roundtables and 36 meetings along with other special events this year, the ASEEES annual convention is arguably the largest gathering of East European and Eurasian studies specialists in the world, outside the countries in the region.
For those who have not heard of ASEEES, allow me to provide a bit of history. The Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies was founded in 1948 as the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies (AAASS). The Joint Committee on Slavic Studies of the American Council of Learned Societies and the Social Science Research Council initially established the association to serve as a “legal umbrella” to publish the journal, American Slavic and East European Review (ASEER), in the state of New York. By the late 1950s, the field had grown significantly. In the immediate post-war years, a number of American universities, notably Columbia, Harvard, UC Berkeley, Yale, and the University of Washington, established area studies programs and research institutes. Following the Sputnik launch in 1957, the intense national interest in the Soviet Union and the creation of a federal funding program to support area studies and language training in higher education led to an exponential growth of educational and research programs in the U.S.
As a result of the dramatic increase in the number of specialists and students, AAASS was officially launched as a professional membership organization in 1960. The journal ASEER was also enlarged and renamed the Slavic Review in 1961. In 2008, in recognition of the seismic shifts in the region since 1989, the association voted to change its name to “the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies,” which was officially amended in 2010. Currently ASEEES has approximately 3,100 members, predominantly from the US while including a significant contingent from outside the US, especially Canada, Europe, Australia, and East Asia.
The ASEEES convention has been an important contributor to the advancement of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian studies and a core professional platform for our members for over five decades. The Association held its first national convention in April 1964 at the Commodore Hotel in New York City, with 590 people in attendance. By the second convention in Washington, DC, in 1967, the attendance had grown to 780 participants. Starting in 1970 the national convention became an annual occurrence, held at various venues around the US, with an occasional conference held outside the US. In recent years the convention attendance has ranged from 1,600 to 2,300. [For the past convention list, click here.]
The 2013 convention is our 45th meeting, and we will be returning to Boston, our most popular location. Apropos of Boston’s history, this year’s theme is “Revolution” because, as Diane Koenker, the current ASEEES president, noted, “revolutions are good to think with.” While an annual theme is provided only as a highlighted category of inquiry (panels are not required to address the theme), it does provide a way to assemble a critical mass of panels addressing the topic. Relatedly, the presidential plenary on “Thinking Revolution: The Wider Work of 1917-1989, and the Colored Revolutions” features eminent scholars on revolutions – Sheila Fitzpatrick, Padraic Kenney and Henry Hale. Koenker will give the presidential address, “Revolutions: A Guided Tour,” following our annual award ceremony, at which we recognize distinguished contributions to the field and award book prizes in various disciplines, a student essay prize, and a dissertation prize.
If you have attended an ASEEES annual convention before, you know that the convention is a lively event and, in all honesty, a sensory overload. It is the best place to learn about the latest research and trends in the field. Unlike larger scholarly associations, which tend to accept only a small number of presentations by graduate students at their national meetings, ASEEES welcomes presentations by advanced graduate students. The convention also offers professional development sessions on publishing and career development. We plan to increase the offering of practicum sessions in the future.
Of course, another essential component of the convention is the networking opportunity particularly for junior scholars and students. If you are new to the field or attending the convention for the first time, it is exceptionally important to seize the moment and introduce yourself to other scholars working on related topics, even if you feel unsure. Even senior scholars want to hear feedback on their research and want to connect with junior scholars and students working on similar topics. Scholars in our field are amazingly generous with their time when it comes to mentoring younger scholars. Also, networking at the convention can enhance the odds of securing a spot on next year’s convention panel.
In addition, be sure to visit the exhibit hall, which will feature exhibit booths from 66 publishers and other organizations. You can review the latest publications and learn about diverse programs in our field. This is also the chance to meet face to face with publishers about your book manuscript ideas.
With so much going on, you will find yourself challenged to attend all the panels that you wish to see. Browse the convention program online. If you are an ASEEES member or a convention attendee, you can log in and you can create your own personal schedule. Also, join our Facebook group for the convention or help us tweet about the convention #aseees13
If you are unable to attend the 2013 convention, join us in San Antonio, Texas, in 2014. The convention theme is “25 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall: Historical Legacies and New Beginnings.” Because the deadlines for proposals come up quickly after the convention (individual paper deadline: Dec. 20, 2013; panel/roundtable proposal deadline: Jan. 15, 2014), we suggest that you begin planning now and try to organize panels and at the Boston convention. ASEEES offers reduced membership fees and travel grants for students and scholars in Eurasia and Eastern Europe.
See you soon in Boston!
Lynda Park, Executive Director, Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies