The Anthropology Graduate Student Association (AGSA) will be hosting its fourth annual interdisciplinary graduate symposium at the University at Buffalo entitled The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. This year we are expanding our conference to be conducted over the weekend of March 28th-30th. The Convergence Symposium series is meant to be a showcase for cooperative, interdisciplinary research in the humanities, social sciences, and related fields that carries the spirit of the current academic climate of blurring academic boundaries.
Humanity has been concerned with Pestilence, War, Famine, and Death long before such crises were codified by the authors of Revelation. Throughout human history, religion, mythologies, politics, cultural structures, and technological advances all have reference to, or deal directly with, the topics represented by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. While we have to be careful of prime mover arguments involving these topics and sociocultural change, we often see these topics discussed in relation with transitional and/or transformational periods in complex societies. Of course, societies have also found effective ways of dealing with these events which provide fairly long-term solutions to the divides these issues can create. Other related issues we see are major population events, settlement change, political instability and upheaval, and changes in ideology and cultural material which address the human needs and desires in periods with uncertain futures.
This year’s Convergence symposium is looking for papers from graduate students of all fields pertaining to any of the four topics represented by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Papers can range from one horseman to any combination thereof, and can be from any academic field, but should be written as social science papers to ensure cohesion in the proceedings. Abstracts should be no more than 200 words and are due January 15, 2014. Presenters should prepare a talk of twenty minutes or less based on their papers and will have five additional minutes for Q&A. A projector will be available so presentations can be of either the PowerPoint variant or spoken presentation of a written paper. The compulsory conference proceedings, which will be published online through an electronic ISBN, will allot 20 pages per paper. Further information regarding the location, and programming for the event is forthcoming.
All submissions or questions should be sent to the AGSA Secretary, Mike Surrett, at firstname.lastname@example.org by January 15, 2014.