Conference Abstract Topics
We invite conference abstracts on the following topics:
- To what extent are targets chosen by discipline, by gender, by race, by political stance, by sexual orientation, by religion? Who is engaged in the targeting, and why?
- Are there differences in the kinds of threats/attacks between the diverse targeted groups, and, if so, what are the structural forces that underlie these differences?
- What relationships might exist between targeting to silence academics through intimidation or violence, and “official” sanctions against the exploration of certain academic subjects (e.g., the controversy at Hamline University, the ban on teaching some subjects, and proactive EDI measures, in Florida)?
- How is targeting affecting academic freedom? In what ways are targeted academics navigating the blurred boundaries among academic freedom, freedom of expression, and hate speech? What are the principles and policies that should guide us in preserving academic freedom and freedom of expression while also addressing instances of hostile attacks that may hinder the educational environment and the well-being of the community?
- What harms are produced by targeting, such as health, well-being, creativity, and the ability to teach well and conduct research well? What strategies can be employed to counteract these harms?
- What can be done within universities to create a widespread sense of safety among those groups who might feel targeted or feel that they could be targeted? How can leadership at academic institutions support individuals that are affected by targeting? How can certain interest groups, professional associations, or sectors, such as government, support universities and individual academics dealing with targeting in academia?
- What does safe dialogue look like in practice, and what examples of tools, mechanisms, or approaches have we seen or used that have worked to cultivate this?
- What are the connections (in rhetoric, funding, organizational support) among seemingly separate contentious social and environmental issues?
- How, and to what extent, does promoting trust and understanding assist in creating a welcoming cultural and social academic environment?
- How can scholars and academic institutions effectively foster transnational solidarities among and with targeted academics without losing sight of the contextual differences and challenges specific to each academic environment?