The Worlds of Violence 9th Pan-European Conference on International Relations Wednesday 23-Saturday 26 September 2015, Giardini Naxos, Sicily, Italy Organised by the European International Studies Association and the University of Catania


Violence is a prominent feature of world politics, and has been the subject of sustained reflection in specific sub-fields within and beyond international studies literatures. Indeed, the range of scholarly discourses on ‘violence’ shows it to be both a multifaceted object of study and an appealing concept. Recent decades have witnessed a dramatic expansion of these diverse approaches to violence, which have enriched our understanding of the many ways wherein violence can be invoked and used to illuminate global phenomena and processes, ranging from military conflict and post-conflict peacebuilding, to accumulation by dispossession, terrorism, environmental destruction, human rights abuses, popular uprisings, and resistance movements. This scholarship is itself only a fraction of a much wider body of work that inscribes violence in a multitude of societal and global structures and dynamics. ‘Violence’ is no longer restricted to physical or psychological characteristics and relations, but extends to all aspects of our biological and social life – from ‘natural’ to ‘military’, ‘political’, ‘economic’, ‘cultural’, ‘racial’, ‘gendered’, ‘epistemic’, ‘ethical’, and ‘symbolic’ violence.


We are interested in rethinking and interrogating violence as an object and a concept, in light of this proliferation of meanings and problematics across the social and human sciences, but also in parallel with the development of complementary or antagonistic worldviews grounded in discourses on ‘norms’, ‘international society’, ‘social order’, or ‘civilizing process’ (among others). We invite contributions that can speak to the ontological, interdisciplinary, political, and epistemic dimensions and implications of research on violence.


While participants are especially invited to respond to the conference theme, proposals on all aspects of the worlds of international relations will be considered, and accordingly we invite contributions from within all areas of International Studies scholarship (such as, but not only, International Relations, Global Political Economy, Political Theory, policy-oriented research). Moreover, given the rich and innovative debates taking place across the social and human sciences, we welcome sections that draw on cross-disciplinary and collaborative scholarship beyond International Studies.


We are also keen to include reflexive interventions that address how violence and/or violence-based narratives impact on scholarship itself as a social practice, and on academic disciplines as social orders.



Call for Section Chairs


The academic programme for the conference will be organised in the usual format of sections composed of panels. A section may consist of either five or ten 105-minute panel sessions during the programme. Each 105-minute panel should comprise five papers plus chair and/or discussant.


The tasks for a section chair include:


  • proposing a section around a theme; populating some panels at the proposal stage, which can take the form of either a list of suggested themes or of proposed paper titles (see point 3 below);
  • composing the rest of the section’s programme, by selecting papers that were proposed in response to the call for paper and panel proposals; maintaining a balance between established and emerging scholars, and postgraduate students;
  • identifying panel chairs and discussants;
  • taking overall responsibility for the actual execution of their section’s contribution to the conference programme.



Proposals for sections should include:


1) Name, institutional affiliation and email address of the proposed section chair(s) – maximum two chairs per section.

2) Proposed section title and summary of its theme(s) and rationale(s) (no more than 250 words). Please state here if your proposed section is to contain 5 or 10 panels.

3) Tentative indication of possible panels. We do not require a full list of panels, but we would like at least 3 suggested themes for a 5-panel proposal and 6 suggested themes for a 10-panel proposal, which would show what the Section convenor(s) hope would be covered by the section at the conference. Section convenors, if they wish, can also substantiate these themes with suggested paper titles or roundtable participants.


Proposals should be submitted to


The closing date for section proposals is Sunday 12 October 2014.


After the authors of accepted section proposals have been notified, a call for papers and panel proposals will be issued in December 2014.


Ian Bruff (Manchester) and Inanna Hamati-Ataya (Aberystwyth)