39th Annual AASSC Conference
May 31 - June 3, 2021
The thirty-ninth annual meeting of the Association for the Advancement of Scandinavian Studies in Canada (AASSC) will be held virtually from Monday, May 31–Thursday, June 3, 2021 in conjunction with the University of Alberta and the meetings of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences / Fédération Canadienne des Sciences Humaines.
Virtual Congress: After much deliberation and planning, arrangements have been made so that Congress 2021 will take place virtually. The Task Force on Congress Contingency Planning has developed a complete plan for facilitating Virtual Congress, more details of which will soon be made available here (https://congress2021.ca/virtual-experience). The AASSC executive is excited by the new opportunities a virtual meeting opens up for us, including the participation of those who may otherwise have been unable to attend an in-person event.
Congress Theme: As stated on the Congress website, the 2021 overall theme is “Northern Relations”: “As one of Canada’s major northward-facing research institutions, the University of Alberta will invite Congress delegates to turn their attention to the North, and invite northern peoples—Indigenous and non Indigenous—to lead the conversation. As a theme, “Northern Relations” encourages delegates to explore the connections between peoples, communities, cultures, and ways of knowing, while also listening to those voices that speak directly to some of the most pressing matters of relation (to the land, to each other) in the North: climate change, governance, social justice, reconciliation, reciprocity, education, and much more. A relation is not only an association and an affiliation, it is also an act of telling or reporting; relations are at the heart of how peoples communicate, organize knowledge, and understand their place in the world. Edmonton, for thousands of years a traditional gathering place for diverse Indigenous peoples, is an ideal location to consider not only relations across the North, but also relations between the North and the South. Join us to listen, learn, and relate.”
Submissions: The AASSC invites papers of 15–20 minutes duration, to be followed by an additional 10 minutes of discussion time. Papers may be given in English or French on a Scandinavian / Nordic related topic in any discipline. Papers will be given as part of ‘simu-live’ sessions: You will be expected to pre-record your paper and upload the recording prior to Congress to the virtual event platform. Sessions will start with a brief live introduction by the panel chair, followed by the broadcast of the pre-recorded presentations, and end with a live Q & A discussion. Presenters will also be given the option of making their recordings accessible to the other conference participants to view on-demand prior to their live broadcast. Further details and instructions will be available closer to the conference, but don’t hesitate to be in touch if you have any questions in the meantime.
We also encourage participants to think about different ways to present their research that take advantage of the virtual format of the conference. For example, a panel session in which a group of presenters make their research material available (e.g. written papers, PowerPoints, recordings, etc.) to the other conference participants on demand and engage in a live discussion/Q & A session; a virtual poster session; or a film showing followed by a panel discussion. We welcome other kinds of creative proposals that part from traditional academic formats and research methods.
The AASSC encourages participants to situate their proposals in relation to the overall theme – “Northern Relations” – as expressed by the Federation, in a Scandinavian/Nordic context. But, in order to address the important missed opportunity of last year’s congress theme (“Bridging Divides: Confronting Colonialism and Anti-Black Racism”), we also welcome panels dealing with this theme. However, papers / panels are NOT limited to these themes, and we welcome all contributions within Scandinavian Studies, including on Sami, Finnish, Greenlandic, Faroese, and Icelandic topics and more, as well as proposals for interdisciplinary colloquia or special sessions on the level of the overall Congress of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Let the AASSC Program Committee Chair know if you wish your panel to be a part of the overall Congress and/or an interdisciplinary session in collaboration with another scholarly association.
Deadline: The deadline for submission of proposals for panels/abstracts is January 15, 2021, through e-mail only. As announced in spring 2020, all acceptances from the cancelled 2020 meeting will be honoured for the 2021 meeting. Should presenters wish to deliver in 2021 papers accepted for 2020 presentation, they are invited to do so without further adjudication but are asked to signal their intentions to do so by January 15, 2021. If they would prefer to present a different paper, their submissions will be reviewed by the Program Committee together with all other new submissions.
Submissions should include the title of the paper, an abstract or summary of the proposed session (150–250 words), the author’s or authors’ name(s) and affiliation(s), a very brief bio or bios, and updated contact information. Please email your submission to the Chair of the AASSC Program Committee at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Time Differences: We are aware that differences in time zones will be a factor for conference participants this year, which will be taken into account as we develop our schedule. The programming of live events will mainly be developed around working hours in Middle and Western Canadian time zones. However, we are eager to accommodate those who wish to participate in the conference living in other time zones. In particular, presenters living in these other time zones will be given priority in timeslots that are most convenient for their participation.
Fees and Funding: By moving Congress online, many of the costs associated with an in-person event are avoidable. However, the move online also introduces many new expenses. As a result, the Virtual Congress registration fee will be offered at a roughly 25% decrease from the regular Congress fee. Although we can not offer specific details at the moment, the AASSC is optimistic that we will be able to reallocate some of the costs that we normally incur for catering and room rentals to support even more student and other underfunded presenters than usual with funding to offset their Virtual Congress registration fee. More information about this will be available in the Winter/Spring.
Please note that all presenters must be paid-up AASSC members by May 31, 2021. You can become a member or renew your membership through the association’s website at the following link: (https://www.aassc.com/membership). Presenters on joint panels with other organizations must be paid-up members of either the AASSC or the co-sponsoring organization.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any comments or questions you might have.
See you online!
Christopher Crocker, University of Iceland