Design a site like this with
Get started

Call for Papers: Shifty Muds Land, Water, and Life in a “Patchy Anthropocene”, 8-10 June 2023

Convenors: Ștefan Dorondel, Adrian Deoancă and Stelu Șerban
Institutions: Francisc I. Rainer Institute of Anthropology Bucharest, The Institute for Southeast European Studies Bucharest, New Europe College. Institute for Advanced Studies Bucharest

This workshop takes mud as a capacious metaphor for all those soggy, dynamic
and ambiguous wetland environments – freshwater islands, banks, floodplains, marshes, swamps, bogs, and peatlands – that are prone to rapid transformations due to their sheer materiality, that take on multiple forms, and that challenge clear-cut ideological bracketing. We are equally interested in different instantiations of land (soils, mud, sand), the forms of life that emerge in such shifting encounters, and the kinds of economic, political, and social configurations that they invite and constrain. We find mud, with its ambiguous qualities that push back against the simplifications forced upon it by modern states and capitalist economies, a fitting metaphor for the “patchy Anthropocene” (Tsing, Mathews, and Bubandt 2019).

In this workshop, we ask: (1) What forms of life and more-than-human relations emerge in such fluid encounters of the Anthropocene? (2) What kinds of economic, political, and social configurations make possible, and are made possible by, these encounters? (3) How can an analytical sensibility to muddy webs of life equip us with the theoretical and practical tools to curtail, repair, and reverse the unsavory effects of modernity’s excessive reduction of nature to human interests?

Important deadlines
February 20: submission of paper proposals (400 words maximum plus a 200-word bio) to Ștefan Dorondel (, Adrian Deoancă ( and Stelu Șerban (

March 1st: Invitation of papers to be presented at the workshop
June 8-10: Workshop in Bucharest

Keynote speakers:
Peter A. Coates (University of Bristol)
Eben Kirskey (University of Oxford)
Laurent Lespez (University of Paris-Est Créteil Val de Marne)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: