This Summer School will focus on the specific and distinctive features of collective social actors in the region by illuminating the central roles played by the youth, women, LGBTQ+ activists and religious actors in shaping, resisting, and/or contesting processes of cultural and socio-political change.
The Summer School will be held in Venice, Italy, on September 18 to 24, 2022.
The School welcomes MA and PhD students (including student activists) who wish to develop a research paper exploring one of the following three themes with reference to contemporary Southeast Asia:
social movements through the lens of age;
social movements through the lens of gender;
social movements through the lens of religion.
Selected students will have the opportunity to work with an appointed advisor on the development of their research paper, written and oral. At the end of the School, they will present their paper to an audience of scholars of Southeast Asia.
* Should travel restrictions and other uncertainties related to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic make it impossible for the event to be held onsite, the Organizing Committee will consider alternative plans, including hybrid modes of attendance. Updates will be published on this website and communicated via email to successful applicants.
This 7-day summer school aims to provide young and emerging scholars with methodological, theoretical, and analytical tools for the study of social movements in contemporary Southeast Asia.
Since the colonial period, resistance in the region has often been expressed via a broad range of social movements – a diverse array of collective actions, organizational strategies, and social networks that have catalyzed profound transformations in identity, lifestyle, culture, economy, and politics. Notable examples include the 1970s student movements in Thailand, the 2008 Saffron Revolution in Myanmar, and the 1986 People Power Revolution in the Philippines.
This Summer School will engage students in addressing the complex transformations brought about by social movements in Southeast Asia by considering the following three interrelated axes of enquiry: religion, gender and age.
As in other world contexts, young people in Southeast Asia have often been at the vanguard of political change. Their mobilization in the region has destabilized longstanding social hierarchies. Many of these movements seek to question prevailing gender norms and advance new ideas of kinship and community. In doing so they often co-opt, contest and reframe those religious ideals that sustain existing power arrangements.
Whilst a growing body of literature has dealt with social movements in areas ranging from Western Europe and North America to Latin America and the Middle East, Southeast Asia remains understudied. Yet, recent “gay pride” parades in Vietnam, youth-led “digital protests” in Thailand and Myanmar, Buddhist environmental actions in Cambodia, “indigenous rights millenarianism” in highland Southeast Asia, and Muslim NGO activism throughout Indonesia, to name a few, have captured international attention.
The Summer School will focus on the specific and distinctive features of collective social actors in this region by illuminating the central roles played by the youth, women, LGBTQ+ activists and religious actors in shaping, resisting, and/or contesting processes of cultural and socio-political change.
In addition to focused lectures and class discussions on social movements in Southeast Asia, the School will provide graduate students from around the world with opportunities to develop academic writing and presentation skills through collaborative work with senior researchers and leading experts in the field.
Based on their research interests/proposal, students will be assigned to one of the following working groups/thematic panels:
social movements through the lens of age;
social movements through the lens of gender;
social movements through the lens of religion.
Students in each panel will work with an appointed advisor on the development of their research paper. The School will conclude with a Graduate Conference that is open to the public. This final event will provide students with a platform to present their work in a scientific conference setting to an audience of scholars of Southeast Asia.
Eligibility and grants
All MA students and PhD students interested in researching about social movements are eligible to apply.
Attendance to the Summer School is free of charge.
Accommodation (six days) and half board (lunch) in Venice will be fully covered for 20 successful applicants.
In addition, travel grants (transportation and visa costs) up to a maximum of 1,000 Euros are available for 5 students from Southeast Asian countries (all but Singapore and Brunei).
Call for applications
Application packages from eligible students should contain:
curriculum vitae, complete with lists of symposia attended and publications (if any)
abstract of a conference paper (max. 300 words) that you would like to develop during the School. This paper should explore the summer school theme through 1 of the proposed 3 analytical lenses: age, gender, or religion
Application materials should be sent to email@example.com by 30 April 2022. Successful applications will be notified via email by 15 May 2022. Selected students will be required to submit a full-length conference paper (maximum: 6,000 words, including references, notes and bibliography) based on their original abstract by 15 July 2022. The proposed paper should not have been previously published or presented. It should also be based on the student’s own work.
Registration is open for the Graduate Conference on Social Movements in Southeast Asia. The conference is fully hybrid and will be held on September 23-24, 2022 at the Istituto Canossiano San Trovaso and online.
Khin Mar Mar Kyi is the inaugural Burmese female Senior Research Fellow at the University of Oxford and she is also an award winning social anthropologist. She is the producer of an acclaimed documentary, "Dreams of Dutiful Daughters"(2013). She championed with a rare combination of her scholarly excellences, passionate humanitarian vision with technical visual skills. Dr Mar is the winner of one of Australia’s most prestigious academic awards – ‘Excellence in Gender Research’ – for her Ph.D. She also received in 2008 Australia's ‘Unsung Heroes’ Award and was selected as one of the ‘UN 100 women in 100 years’ award among other awards. She is considered to be an inspiring leading scholar on Myanmar and Southeast Asia region. She is the founding executive director of The Oxford Thanakha International Gender Studies and Social science initiative. Previously, she was a regional director for child protection and technical advisor in the region and have also been senior advisor for many other international bilateral aid organizations including UN. Dr Mar has previously taught as a lecturer at the Australian National University. She has written many articles and participated in many international conferences. Currently she is based at the University of Oxford but working also as senior advisor for Myanmar and gender issues.
Giuseppe Bolotta is Assistant Professor of Southeast Asian Studies in the Department of Asian and North African Studies at the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, and Research Associate of the National University of Singapore’s Asia Research Institute. His research interests focus on the history and cultural politics of childhood and youth in Thailand; development, religion, and humanitarianism in Southeast Asia; transnational governance of childhood; and the politics of children’s rights in the Global South. He has conducted long-term fieldwork with marginalised children and youths in slums, schools, temples and NGO venues in and around Bangkok. He is the author of Belittled Citizens: The Cultural Politics of Childhood on Bangkok’s Margins (NIAS Press, 2021), and co-editor of Political Theologies and Development in Asia: Transcendence, Sacrifice, and Aspiration (Manchester University Press, 2020).
Richard Quang-Anh Tran is Assistant Professor of Southeast Asian Studies at Ca’Foscari University of Venice. His research interests include literary and cultural studies, the history and theory of gender, nineteenth and twentieth century Vietnamese cultural history. He has held postdoctoral fellowship and visiting positions at the National University of Singapore, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the Program in Critical Theory at Berkeley. His book, Queer Vietnam: A History of Gender in the early Twentieth-Century, 1920-1945, is forthcoming with Stanford University Press. He is an executive board member and treasurer of the Vietnam Studies Group of the Association for Asian Studies.
Edoardo Siani is Assistant Professor of Southeast Asian Studies at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and Research Associate at SOAS University London. He writes about the political dimensions of Buddhist cosmology in contemporary Thailand. Edoardo received a PhD in anthropology and sociology from SOAS, and was postdoctoral fellow and assistant professor at Kyoto University’s CSEAS. A resident of Bangkok since 2002, he previously taught at Thammasat University, worked in language education, and served as interpreter for the Thai police. He has contributed to numerous media outlets, including BBC and The New York Times.
London School of Economics and Political Science
Chris Chaplin is an Assistant Professorial Research Fellow in the Religion and Global Society Research Unit based at the London School of Economics and Political Science. His research explores the convergence between global Islamic doctrines and local understandings of piety and faith, and how these come to inform civic values, concepts of religious and political belonging, and social activism within Southeast Asia. From a methodological and theoretical standpoint, he is interested in investigating how reflexive approaches to ethnography can provide a transformative space through which to create new dialogues between anthropological practice and religious doctrines. He has authored a number of articles and op-eds and most recently published the book Salafism and the State: Islamic Activism and National Identity in Indonesia (2021).
Paul Horton is an Associate Professor at the Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning at Linköping University in Sweden. His research interests include issues related to school bullying, education, gender, sexuality, and questions of power and resistance. He has conducted ethnographic research on several issues in the Vietnamese context, including school bullying, masculinity, and LGBTQ+ rights and recognition. He has published the book Bullied into it: Bullying, Power and the Conduct of Conduct (2012) and has contributed chapters for various anthologies, including the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Vietnam (2022). He has also published in numerous international journals, such as Culture, Health & Sexuality, Gender and Education, International Journal for Masculinity Studies, Journal of GLBT Family Studies, and Men and Masculinities.
Freie Universität Berlin
Thomas Stodulka is Junior Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology, with a special focus on Psychological Anthropology, at Freie Universität Berlin, Germany. His work focuses on the interplay between affect, emotion, childhood and adolescence, alternative economies and education, mental health and illness, stigmatization, datafication, critical epistemologies and affective methodologies. He conducted long-term fieldwork with street-related children, young men and women in Yogyakarta, Indonesia between 2001 and 2015, and he has directed international research projects on the role of affect and emotion in fieldwork and ethnography, envy in transcultural perspectives, and critical perspectives on interdisciplinary emotion research and big data. He has published 7 books and over 40 articles and visual ethnographies on these topics. He co-directs the methodology lab at the CRC 1171 ‘Affective Societies’ at FU Berlin and he is research fellow at the Leipzig Lab working group on ‘Children and Nature’. He is the co-founder of the Psychological Anthropology Section, German Anthropological Association (DGSKA), and the co-founder and convenor of the European Network for Psychological Anthropology (ENPA) at the European Association of Social Anthropology (EASA). Thomas is Associate Editor of Ethos and Brill Book Series Editor of Social Sciences in Asia. He has won multiple research awards, and he is Marie Skłodowska-Curie Alumni and Alumni of the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS).
Ecole Française d’Extrême-Orient
Catherine Scheer is a lecturer in anthropology at the Ecole Française d’Extrême-Orient, affiliated with the Centre Asie du Sud-Est, Paris. After having obtained her PhD in anthropology from EHESS-Paris in 2014, she was a post-doctoral fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore (2015-2017) and a lecturer at the Institute for Anthropology, Heidelberg University (2017-2019). Catherine has done extended field research in the Cambodian highlands with ‘indigenous’ Bunong who are navigating through intense ecological and socio-economical transformations. The intersections of Christianity, development, and indigenous rights in upland continental Southeast Asia constitute nodes of particular interest to her. As a member of the Observatory of political alternatives in Southeast Asia (AlterSEA), Catherine is involved in reflections about some of the challenges of engaged research.
School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Matthew Phillips is a Senior Research Analyst at the Foriegn, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) where he provides analysis on Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Vietnam and ASEAN. After gaining his PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in 2013, he was lecturer in Modern Asian History at Aberystwyth University, Wales. He has published widely on Thai history and politics, and contributed to media including The New York Times and the BBC. He currently studies how Thai diplomacy in the Cold War drew from historic principles of Buddhist kingship. He is a Research Associate at the Centre of South East Asian Studies, SOAS.
Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti
Amalia Rossi is an Italian sociologist and anthropologist. PhD in Anthropology of Contemporaneity (University of Milan - Bicocca, 2012), she teaches Cultural Anthropology at the Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti (NABA) in Milan and conducts fieldwork research in Thailand (eco-Buddhist movements, ethnic based environmental conflicts) and Italy (sociology of migrations and Roma-Sinti minorities studies), publishing widely in national and international academic reviews and in academic books as editor and author, both in Italian and English language. Since 2017 she works in the field of political asylum and international protection as project coordinator, Case Worker and consultant for national and European government agencies and institutions, such as the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) and the Italian Ministry of the Interior.
Tor Vergata University of Rome
Alessandra Chiricostais philosopher and trainer on intercultural methodologies and theories, applied to different fields (gender issues, politics, education, religions); historian of religions, with an anthropological approach, specialized in Vietnamese and Chinese cultures and Ethnic Minorities issues; activist in women's policies and expert in gender studies, post colonial and decolonial feminisms, transnational feminist movements, with particular attention on issues related to gender based violence, women's self defense theories and practices. She worked as a Consultant in Gender Issues for several International Organizations and NGO's (Oxfam, Ucodep, MCNV, UN Commission on Human Rights). She taught diverse disciplines at a Graduate and Post Graduate level in the University of Ha Noi (Vietnam), University of Rome "La Sapienza", University of "Roma Tre", University of Tor Vergata, Urbaniana University. She is member of the editorial board of IaPh-Italia, (the International Organization of Women Philosophers) and Coordinator of the section on Intercultural and Transnational Feminisms in the Master Course on Equal Opportunities and Gender Policies, Roma Tre University. She works as a consultant and trainer for A.T. Beck Institute of Rome for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy. Instructor of Martial Arts (Taijiquan, Muay Thai, Gong Fu Wu Shu), she runs courses of women and non binary people empowerment based on an original approach that combines theory and practice, mind and body.
Maria Beatrice Grossa
Ca’ Foscari University of Venice
Maria Beatrice Grossa is the project coordinator of the Summer School "Social Movements in Contemporary Southeast Asia". Since 2016 she has been collaborating with public and private institutions in the organisation of summer schools and events. She has studied at Ca' Foscari, Bolzano, Leiden, and Mashhad. Beatrice holds a PhD in Applied Linguistics from the Faculty of Education (Free University of Bolzano) and is interested in comparative linguistics and pedagogical linguistics.
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