On October 21 and
22, 2005, as one of the major events of its research project on "States
of Autonomy," the Center presented
Art of the State: Sovereignty Past and
Douglas Howland (History and 2004-2005 Center Fellow) and
Luise White (History, University of Florida)
Kate Kramer (Center for 21st Century Studies)
conference The Art of the State: Sovereignty Past and Present sought to
dispense with the idea that sovereignty accrues naturally to a state.
Participants interrogated sovereignty as a set of practices that are historically
contingent--a mix of both international and intra-national processes including
self-determination, international law, and natural right. Participants
examined a number of diverse contexts outside of the normative center
of Western Europe in order to explore how states construct themselves
and how state forms seek to be sovereign. Rather than try to find one
overarching and totalizing definition of sovereignty--one that is ahistorical
and transnational--the conference sought to disclose the strategic sovereignties
that have informed histories and shaped territories in the modern world.
This represents an alternative to recent literature on nationalism, which
too often treats nationalism as a precursor to the formation of modern
states. The conference took recent debates about nations, national identity,
and the political relationships between the two and relocated them in
a broader history of sovereignty, territory, and legality. We explored
the different ways in which sovereign political forms have been defined
and define themselves.
of the State,
October 21, 22, 2005
Abbas Ourmazd, Dean of the graduate school and Vice-Chancellor
Daniel J. Sherman, Professor of History and Center Director
Keynote and Questions
Siba N. Grovogui (Political Science, Johns Hopkins University)
"The Multiple and Hidden Lives of Sovereignty"
States and Laws
Eileen Scully (Social Sciences, Bennington college):
"The Second Great Enclosure Movement: Sovereignty,
Mobility, and Nationality in the Late Nineteenth Century"
Douglas Howland (History, UW-Milwaukee):
"The Foreign and the Free: Questions of Extraterritoriality in Nineteenth-century
China and Japan"
Mark Bradley (History, Northwestern University):
"The Ambiguities of Sovereignty: Civil Rights Claims and American
Engagement in Global Human Rights Politics, 1946-1953"
Nardin (Political Science, UW-Milwaukee)
Laws about States
Martha Kaplan and John Kelly (Anthropology, Vassar college/University
Fictions After Empire"
Luise White (History, University of Florida):
"Sanctioning Independence, or What Does it Take to Be a State?
Moderator: Ruud van Dijk (Center for 21st Century Studies,
A. Hozic (Political Science, University of Florida):
"Merchants, Crime, and Sovereignty in the Balkans"
Thomas Lamarre (East Asian Studies, Cornell University):
"Media and the Sovereign Police"
Moderator: K.E. Supriya (Journalism and Mass Communication,
Questions of Territory
Aims McGuinness (History, UW-Milwaukee):
"Sovereignty on the Isthmus: Federalism, Centralism, and U.S. Empire
in Panama in the Mid-Nineteenth Century"
Fred Cooper (History, New York University):
"Alternatives to Empire: France and Africa after World War II"
Kevin C. Dunn (Political Science, Hobart & William Smith
colleges): "The 'Nature' of Sovereignty: Environmental Security,
Spatial Preservation, and State Sovereignty in the African Great Lakes
Moderator: Ellen Amster (History, UW-Milwaukee)
Questions of Populations
Leonard Smith (History, Oberlin college):
"Sovereignty and Wilsonian Idealism in the Middle East: The King-Crane
Commission of 1919"
David Tucker (History, University of Iowa):
"Colonial Sovereignty in Manchuria and Manchukuo"
Keith Brown (International Studies,
"Sovereignty After Socialism at Europe's New Borders"
Moderator: Edward Hinchman (Philosophy, UW-Milwaukee)
Ricigilano (Institute for World Affairs, UW-Milwaukee)
General Discussion moderated by
Dougland Howland and Luise White
for 21st Century Studies