Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, North University Centre of Baia Mare, Romania


Quebec Council for Geopolitical Studies, Laval University, Quebec, Canada

Invite you to take part in

The 2nd International Conference of Cultural Studies “Multiculturalism and the Need for Recognition” Baia Mare, 6-8 October, 2017

with the theme:

The Border: World Reconfigurations of the 21st Century

In a world that seems to question, more than ever before, the efficiency of globalization and its effects, walls tend to be erected in order to prevent the increased mass exodus of displaced and exiled people. The whole history of humanity has reached its climax in what concerns the number of refugees throughout the 21st century, the causes behind this record being wars, dictatorships and poverty.

In order to support and plead for the future prevention of  this unforeseen mass dispersal a series of countries are ready to give up their belonging to some high power control structures in order to preserve their sovereignty and unitary government, Great Britain being a good example in this respect, while others turn their backs on free-trade commercial agreements. The problem of boundaries, of borders that seem, contrary to generalised evidence, to get increasingly closed, has been taken into discussion a lot recently (Douzet and Giblin 2013; Roche 2014).  If, on the one hand, we are witnessing the closure of a significant number of existing frontiers, or their reinforcement (India-Bangladesh, Israel-Palestina, Mexico-The United States (Soule 2013)), this fact does not represent an obstacle meant to prevent the fluidity of space, but a method of control and management (Gonon si Lasserre 2003; Gonon 2011; Lasserre et al 2012).

The analysts, however, claim that, currently, the free passing of borders represents the predominant model of mass mobility (Foucher 2016). The frontier, far from being closed, far from representing an insurmountable milestone, often constitutes an interface that attracts various economic activities around it (Reitel et al. 2002; Bennafla 2002; Sohn 2016), or ratifications of regional cooperation (Reitel et al 2002; Soule 2010); it fuels discourses and anchors identity projections or representations.

The border is a social construct that has its own history. Classical Antiquity defined it in terms of a limit, the limit of the known, nearby space (more precisely the cultivated fields), a boundary that marked the beginning of the unknown. The Middle Ages’ terminology concentrated on a derivative of the word front, the meaning making reference to the line that separates two armies on the battlefield. The 19th century, known as the century of the national state, stressed the idea of a frontier that demarcates two sovereign states, two judicial orders, two political and monetary systems, and, last but not least, two national histories (Foucher 2016).

This academic endeavour attempts to get people engaged in an analysis or/and debate about the very subject of borders, focusing on four thematic axes: spatial borders, cultural and religious borders, (inter)disciplinary and artistic borders and economic borders. In view of the already mentioned ideas, we invite scholars from all fields of research (philosophy, philology, social sciences, politics, linguistics, arts, law, business and education, science and technology) to explore issues related to the concept of border and border-related problems in order to reflect on changes, distances, reconciliations, social transformation, migrational movements that are currently taking place at this restless beginning of the 21st century.

The venue

The conference will be held in the main building of The Faculty of Letters, North University Centre of Baia Mare, Technical University of Cluj-Napoca. All conference rooms are equipped with computers and projectors. The computers all run on Windows XP and use Microsoft Office 2007/2010. Most fonts and characters are supported. If you have a PowerPoint presentation, please make sure to save it in a format compatible with PowerPoint 2007/2010.

  • Official conference languages

    The languages of the presentations might be Romanian, English, French and German.

  • Timing

    The time allotted to the presentation of a paper is 15 minutes, followed by 10-minute sessions of questions and answers.