Call for papers: 2. Finnish-Hungarian-Estonian Ethnological Symposium (julkaistu 3.10.2016)

2. Finnish-Hungarian-Estonian Ethnological Symposium Departure and Arrival: Migratory Processes and Local Responses from Ethnographic and Anthropological Perspective

Call for Papers

Migratory processes – broadly defined to include such topics as emigration, immigration, resettling, special kind of tourism, and work undertaken abroad – and the individuals and communities of varying sizes that participate in them may be studied in various contexts and time frames from both the ethnographic and anthropological perspectives. The past 150 years have seen numerous political, social, and economic events, along with changes to the lifepaths of populations and individuals, that have prompted people to leave their homelands, whether temporarily, for an extended period, or even permanently. Affecting millions, human migration is a phenomenon that continues to the present day. From a geographic standpoint, a distinction must be made between internal migration, and migration that involves the crossing of national borders. An understanding of what people experience during departure, travel, and arrival, with consideration given to the distinction between voluntary and forced migration, can help us grasp phenomena such as the transferral and preservation of values, comprehend which processes and practices work to integrate or isolate, and grant a perspective on both source, and destination groups and the responses to the situations encountered in new locations. To understand this multi-faceted phenomenon requires a multidisciplinary approach, for which ethnographic and anthropological research findings may offer assistance.

Conference applications should offer presentations that can provide interpretive responses to the issues surrounding migration, historical or contemporary, and/or use case studies to elucidate its various stages, participants, and effects. The issues in question include the following: What factors prompt groups and individuals to take to the road? What challenges do they face both while on the road, and upon arrival? What traditions and objects do migrants take with them from their homelands, and what new meaning is imparted to such things in the process?

Of particular importance to this conference is the portrayal both of communities joined, and communities left behind. How do phenomena associated with globalisation affect the future lives of migrants and the communities from which they originated? How do both local minorities with a historic past, and more recent settlers shape the day-to-day lives and traditions of the communities they join? What factors might compel migrant groups and individuals to return home? How do various forms of keeping in touch with those who remained, or with others who have taken to the road (mail, Internet, personal visits), and ways of maintaining communal memory (family, local) function? What forms can cooperation between destination and migrant communities take? In what ways can individual and group identity be maintained within a new community? How are local landscapes, traditions, and knowledge shaped by migratory processes? At the local level, is it the demonstrable differences or rather the similarities that have the greatest effect in these processes?

If you would like to give a presentation on any of these subjects, please send the planned title and a synopsis of presentation content (2000 keystrokes maximum) to the following electronic address by latest 25 November 2016: Tímea Bata (Museum of Ethnography) batatimi(at)

It is on the basis of the synopses it receives that the conference committee will select the 30 presentations to be given for the occasion. One keynote speaker is invited to the symposium from every participating country.

Conference information:
Date: 9 May (departure from Budapest) – 13 May (arrive to Budapest) 2017
Location: Kolozsvár (Cluj Napoca, Romania)
Length of individual presentations: 20 minutes
Conference language: English
Organised by:
Hungarian Ethnographic Society (Budapest)
Museum of Ethnography (Budapest)
Kriza János Ethnographic Society (Kolozsvár)

On behalf of the Hungarian Ethnographic Society and the organizing committee
Tímea Bata batatimi(at), 0036-30-5963695.