Sunday, February 8, 2015

The 2nd Biennial Black Canadian Studies Association Conference

Halifax, Nova Scotia, 21-24 May 2015.

The Black Canadian Studies Association (BCSA) will host its 2nd Biennial Black Canadian Studies Conference, Community, Empowerment & Leadership in Black Canada, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, from 21 to 24 May 2015. To be held at Dalhousie University, the goal of the conference is to promote dialogue, critical reflection and nuanced perspectives on the past, present and future of Black leadership in Canada.

The conference presents an exciting opportunity to explore leadership and the Black community in Canada locally, provincially, nationally & globally from a variety of perspectives. Conference organizers welcome papers from an array of disciplines that explore the Black experience in Canada, as well as those, that address the nature of Black Canadian Studies using a variety of theoretical frameworks and methodologies. Disciplinary contributions are encouraged from, but not limited to, anthropology, history, criminology, literature, music, and political science. Moreover, scholars outside the humanities and social sciences, in such disciplines as business, law, the health professions, engineering and natural sciences, are encouraged to participate. We also welcome input and abstracts from activists, community developers and community historians.

Placed within the context of leadership, capacity building and community empowerment, topics may include, but are not limited to:
* class
* nationality/ism
* gender
* race & ethnicity
* youth
* education/schooling
* sexualities
* Anti-Black racism
* institution building
* identity
* health
* Pan-Africanism
* feminism
* immigration policy
* Black leadership historically
* political representation
* neoliberalism
* democracy
* Black communities and criminal justice
* arts & culture
* theology & religion
* vanguardism

The long history of Black people in Canada has been shaped by the struggle for human recognition, social justice and democratic participation. In the face of growing austerity, the reconfiguration of the Canadian state and the transformation of global political economy, it is imperative that we analyze the place of Black Canadians within these ongoing changes, the state of the of Black communities across Canada, and generate strategies for the future. The conference will provide a venue and space for these very important conversations, discussions and debates.

The conference will take place over three days from Thursday evening on 21 May to Sunday afternoon, 24 May. Plenary sessions and panels will occupy important places throughout the conference schedule. In addition to individual paper proposals, participants are encouraged to submit proposals for panels. Panels can be disciplinary, multi-disciplinary, and furthermore can consist of academics and non-academics. Panels may consist of three to four papers addressing a coherent theme or issue. The organizing committee reserves the right to make changes in the overall configuration of panels.

All proposals are due by February 15, 2015. Individual and Panel proposals and abstracts should be between 150-250 words.

While conference organizers will attempt to secure financial assistance for students and participants outside North America, we are unable at this time to offer financial support. Participants should therefore anticipate full responsibility for their own expenses unless notified otherwise. We encourage participants who require a visa to enter Canada, to make arrangements as soon as possible.


The 2015 BCSA Conference presents an exciting opportunity to explore leadership and the Black community in Canada. The conference will be held from May 21st until May 24th 2015, under the auspices of the James R. Johnston Chair, Dr. Afua Cooper. To be held at Dalhousie University, this conference will bring together world-leading academics, community leaders, and the community at large to promote dialogue, critical reflection, and nuanced perspectives on the past, present, and future of Black leadership in Canada.

Promote dialogue
Encourage critical reflection
Develop nuanced perspectives on the past, present, and future of Black leadership in Canada
Contribute to a Canadian society that celebrates diversity and inclusiveness as core values. Why Halifax? Recorded Canadian Black history began in Nova Scotia in 1604. The province and by extension, the City of Halifax, therefore hold a special place in long history of Black people in Canada. In Halifax itself, there were several Africans who were present at the founding of the city in 1749. Since these dates, the city and province have been home to diverse communities of African Canadians including those of Acadian and Planter backgrounds, the Black Loyalists, The Jamaican Maroon, Refugees of the War of 1812, and Caribbean immigrants of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Today, newer Black communities from the African and Caribbean Diasporas have joined these historic communities. Given the long history of Black people in Halifax, the city is uniquely positioned to host a conference which delves into various aspects of the Black experience, African Canadian and African Nova Scotian life, history, and culture.

Conference Content Topics of disciplinary contributions will include
• Anthropology
• Business
• Criminology
• Engineering
• History
• Law
• Literature
• Music
• Natural Sciences
• Political ScienceSchedule Overview
• Cultural Welcome Reception Friday May 22nd, 2014
• Concurrent Sessions, Seminars, Dialogues Friday May 22nd, Saturday May 23rd
• Keynote Addresses Friday May 22nd, Saturday May 23rd
• Keynote Luncheon Sunday May 24th
• Other cultural activities and community engagement Thursday May 21st to Sunday May 24th Budget and 

Finances The 2015 BCSA Conference will remain accessible to everyone through low registration costs and scholarship opportunities, which will be made available to those in need. Registration Breakdown:
• $150 – Early Bird 1 (Jan 12 to Feb 22)
• $175 – Early Bird 2 (Feb 23 to April 12)
• $200 – Regular
• $65 – Student Total conference expenditures are approximated at $95,100. 

Total conference income is approximated at $95,800 – including $63,000 of support. Sources of Support Include:
• Corporate Giving
• Public Sector Grants
• Institutional Support
• In-Kind Services

For proposal submission and further information please contact: (902-494-4088)

Contact Information Conference Chair: Dr. Afua Cooper
902-494-3012 902-237-7526

Conference Manager: RĂ©mi Lefebvre
Le5 Management

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