Call for Proposals

CFP closed

The call for papers is now closed and we have emailed a decision to everyone who contacted us.

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USS2015 CfP MSWord 20Kb

Call for Proposals

Call for proposals: Utopia and the end of the city

16th Annual International Conference of the European Utopian Studies Society, 1-4 July 2015, Newcastle University, UK.


The call for proposals has now closed.

“Man ceased to be a wild animal only when he built the first wall” (Yevgeny Zamyatin, We).

The End of the City can be understood in at least three ways: as its boundary, as its demise, or as a question about its purpose.

An ever greater proportion of the world’s growing population is urban. As its physical and social limits expand, the city can seem endless, intruding into every aspect of global life. At the same time, its ends or functions – social, political, affective, cultural – become more multifaceted and harder to pin down. The fortunes of individual cities rise and fall on waves of global capital and shifts in the material infrastructures of world economies. And the voracious growth of the urban also invites us to re-examine the meanings of the natural beyond city-country and nature-culture binaries. Utopian studies offers a wealth of approaches for thinking and re-thinking the dilemmas and desires of an urban age, for exploring what is next for - or after - the city.

The 2015 USS Conference is dedicated to exploring these issues and their relationship to utopian thought, theory and practice. Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the Northeast of England is uniquely situated to consider the city and its end(s). Hadrian’s wall, the ruins of which pass through Newcastle, demarcated the limit of the Roman Empire and apparent civilization, an idea that continues to shape conceptions of inclusion and exclusion in Britain and elsewhere. The modern boundaries of Newcastle include urban pastureland where city and country slip into each other, a slippage also felt in the city’s proximity to the coast and some of England’s most remote countryside. Newcastle has seen its world-famous shipyards, coalmines and even its Newcastle Brown Ale brewery close – but industrial production continues alongside urban regeneration schemes and dreams of reframing Newcastle in the image of entrepreneurialism and spectacle. Newcastle’s urban limits are fuzzy, its future is uncertain, and there are many questions to be asked about what and who urban regeneration might be for.  We hope this rich context will stimulate a wide range of speculations about possible pasts, presents and futures for cities, natures and communities.

We particularly encourage proposals relating to this theme, but welcome proposals on any other aspect of the utopian tradition in its broadest sense from all fields of research and practice. We warmly invite creative suggestions for presentation formats as well as proposals for:

  • 20-minute papers on research or practice: Please submit a 250 word abstract
  • Research posters: Please submit a 250 word abstract
  • Closed panels of 3 papers by named contributors: Please submit a proposal comprising a brief outline of the panel theme, the panel chair, abstracts and authors for three papers.
  • Alternative modes of enquiry and presentation not indicated above.

Closing date for paper and closed panel proposals, and posters March 15th 2015.

Please send all proposals and correspondence to