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Shanghai University Call for Papers: Orientalism, Neo-Orientalism and Post-Orientalism in African, Middle East, Latin American, Asian/Chinese Studies











15th Anniversary of Memory of Edward Said (1935-2003)
and 40th Anniversary of His Book (1978)

MAY 17–18, 2018

Call for Papers: Orientalism, Neo-Orientalism and Post-Orientalism in African, Middle East, Latin American, Asian/Chinese Studies

Objectives and Description

Area studies within Western academia has a long and multifaceted history, and was essentially established in the mind of Orientalists in the late 19th century. After the 1950s, Area studies was dominated by hardcore policy-oriented circles and funded by governmental organizations. This was a direct result of the Cold War between the USSR and the United States. During the Cold War era, the United States and European countries funded Area Studies scholars and “volunteers” who then poured into Africa, Latin America and Central America, Asia, and the Middle East to study history, society and politics; however, this was a classical representation of Orientalism motivated by political objectives. However, in recent years, especially after the 1980s neoliberal era, we began to see other academics interested in studying Modern Asia, Africa, Central and Latin America, and Middle East politics from diverse fields of scholarship, for instance, political scientists, anthropologists, linguists, sociologists and so on. On the other hand, there was a transformation taking place within Western academia, based on grant-seeking and scholarship opportunities, which were and continue to be embedded in the neoliberal education system. Unlike classical Orientalists, newer forms of scholarship are more political than its predecessors and funded by state agencies within Western academia. We call this process of knowledge production neo-Orientalism. Many of today’s scholars have studied neoliberal terms and concepts such as human rights, democracy, ethnic and religious minorities, etc. According to William Robinson, this is the promotion of polyarchy, rather than the pursuit of pure academic knowledge. However, in the last few years, we have witnessed critical perspective toward Area Studies emerging from “native” scholars. This is just the beginning stage of re-mapping Area Studies in the 21st century. We call this new era post-Orientalism.   

Topics of Interest

This is the first conference on this topic, and we would like to examine this transformation in area studies. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Orientalism, Neo-Orientalism, and Post-Orientalism in African, Latin and Central American, Asian and Middle Eastern Studies
  • Orientalism, Neo-Orientalism, and Post-Orientalism in Research on Democracy, Human Rights, Press Freedom, Academic Freedom, Women’s Rights, and so on 
  • Imperialism and New-Imperialism (Neil Smith and David Harvey)
  • Sociology of Orientalism, Neo-Orientalism, and Post-Orientalism
  • Global/International Studies and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism
  • Political Science/International Relations and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism
  • Think Tanks, International Organizations, and NGOs and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism
  • Liberal and New Left Discourse and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism
  • Development Studies and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism
  • Post-Colonial Studies and Orientalism/Neo-Orientalism/Post-Orientalism

Important Dates

  • February 29, 2018: Abstract Submission Deadline for the Conference.
  • Marc 5, 2018: Official Acceptance Letters Issued
  • March 19, 2018: Official Invitation Letter for Visa Applicaiton Issued
  • April 16, 2018: Confirmation Deadline for Your Participation
  • May 7, 2018: Conference Draft Paper Submission Deadline
  • May 17-18, 2018: Conference 
  • June 25, 2018: Selected Papers for Publication

Relavent Readings

Before you submit your proposal, please see the following articles and books related to our conference themes:

Abstract Submission

Please submit the following information for abstract submission:

  • Author full name;
  • Affiliation;
  • Email address: university email address should be provided;
  • Abstract in Word format;
  • Title of your paper;
  • A short bio, 100 words (not CV or resume).

Submissons shoudl be sent to

Official Acceptance, Invitation Letter, and Visa

If your paper is accepted by the conference committee, first you will receive an official acceptance letter. Then, you need to email us a pdf or jpeg copy of the first page of your passport for you to receive official invitation letter from Shanghai University for VISA application. 

Paper Submission

In case your abstract is accepted, a draft paper of around 4000–5000 words is due May 7, 2018. We intend to compile an edited volume with the best papers for publication in an international peer-reviewed reference publisher.

All submissions will be reviewed and judged on originality, theoretical strength, in-depth knowledge, relevance to the conference themes, significance, quality of presentation, and relevance to the special issue topics of interest. Submitted papers may not have appeared in or be under consideration for another workshop, conference, or journal, nor may they be under review or submitted to another forum during the review process.

For any questions on the submission process, please email

There is no fee for this conference.

Please note that we will cover your accommodations and food during your stay in Shanghai; therefore, you need to confirm your participation to the conference.  


Please note that we will cover your accommodations and food during your stay in Shanghai. New Lehu Hotel is located within the campus of Shanghai University in Baoshan district, Shanghai, China. The address is No.716 Jinqiu Road, Baoshan District, Shanghai, 2000444. The telephone is 0086-21-66133688. 

Please note that this is an academic conference only; no non-academic presenters will be accepted.  

Organizing Committee

  • Dr. Guo Changgang, Professor - Shanghai University, China.
  • Dr. Nikitah Imani, University of Nebraska, USA.
  • Dr. Tugrul Keskin, Associate Professor, Shanghai University, China.
  • Dr. Yang Chen, Post-Doctoral Fellow, Shanghai University, China.
  • Dr. Omer Turan, Middle East Technical University, Turkey.
  • Dr. Rajiv Ranjan, Shanghai University, China.
  • Dr. David Fasenfest, Wayne State University, USA.

About Shanghai University

Shanghai University is a comprehensive research university and was founded in 1922; originally a revolutionary school, the university contributed a group of useful people to the cause of Chinese liberation and development. Shanghai University was founded on Qingyun Road, Jing'an District, Shanghai in 1922 and was the outcome of the cooperation between the Kuomintang (Nationalist Party) and the Communist Party. By consolidating four universities, it became a research-intensive comprehensive university and also the biggest higher learning institution run by Shanghai Municipality in 1994. Our university has more than 40,000 students. The university enrolls more than 27,000 undergraduate and 14,000 postgraduate students, including 3,896 international students. We have 28 schools and 2 independent departments, with 71 undergraduate programs, 221 master programs, 17 engineering master programs, 117 Ph.D. programs, 17 post-doctoral programs, and 2 MBA programs. Also, it is essential to mention our important and historical alumni, such as Yang Shangkun, 4th President of People's Republic of China, enrolled in Department of Sociology of Shanghai University in 1926, and Bo Gu, who was a senior leader of the Chinese Communist Party and a member of the 28 Bolsheviks, who enrolled in the Department of Sociology of Shanghai University in 1925. 


THURSDAY, May 17, 2018 

9:00 - 9:30 AM Opening Ceremony 

9:00 - 9:15 AM Welcome Speech 

9:15 - 9:30 AM Keynote Speech

10:00 - 11:30 AM Panel

1. Panel:

11:30-13:00 PM Lunch 

13:00-14:30 PM Panels

2. Panel:  

14:30-15:00 PM Coffee Break

15:00-16:30 PM Panel

3. Panel:  

FRIDAY, May 18, 2018

 10:00-11:30 AM

4. Panel:  

11:30-13:00 PM Lunch

13:00-14:30 PM Panels

5. Panel:

14:30-15:00 PM Coffee BreaK 

15:00-16:30 PM Panel   

6. Panel:  

18:00-20:00 PM Dinner

Closing Remarks

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