Proposals Due December 2nd, 2016


Third Symposium of the UPR-UM Outreach Collaboration:

Citizenship and Identity in the Classroom

March 2 and 3, 2017
Universidad de Puerto Rico, Recinto de Río Piedras

The concept of citizenship has been reconceptualized by cultural and political processes such as globalization, neoliberalism, humanitarian crisis, and migration patterns. An illustrative example would be the case of Puerto Rico in 2017, a century after the Jones Act that granted American citizenship to Puerto Ricans. This commemoration comes in the midst of important discussions about the current colonial political relationship between the island and the United States: what does it mean to be a citizen in a time of economic and political crisis? The issue of citizenship is invariably implicated in contemporary issues like the migration from Syria, Mexico, and Central America, the war against terrorism led by the United States and Europe, and civil rights in the Haiti-Dominican Republic border.

Taking this as the symposium’s main theme, we are calling on graduate students from the University of Michigan working from any discipline, methodologies, or perspective, researching in any part of the world or historical contexts, to present on topics concerning citizenship and identity. We want to create a space in which graduate students from the University of Michigan and the University of Puerto Rico can share the innovative ways in which they are studying the concept of citizenship. We would like to see how the subject of citizenship intersects with themes like civil and human rights, political traditions, migration, political participation, memory, gender, race, sexuality, neoliberalism, globalization, nationalism, and cultural policies, among others.

The objective of this symposium is to incorporate the topic of citizenship and identity into academic curriculums and teaching models at the university and K-12 school level. We want graduate students to present their research and propose ways to incorporate that research into secondary school classrooms. We want to explore the different kinds of didactic, audiovisual, and classroom activities that could be developed.

Presentations are open to any geographical area and historical context, but they need to address the concept of citizenship. Each presentation should be fifteen (15) minutes long (around 7 pages, double-spaced) in either English or Spanish. Around 6 graduate students from the University of Michigan will be chosen to participate, along with about 10 graduate students from the University of Puerto Rico. Travel expenses (flight, ground transportation, hotel, and meals) will be covered by university centers. Those interested in participating must submit (1) an abstract of the proposed talk and (2) a short explanation on how to incorporate this material in the classroom.  The deadline is Friday, December 2, 2016, and the proposal can be submitted here via Google Form.  Priority will be given to students in the dissertation-writing stage who can “translate” their research into ways of teaching that subject in the classroom. Selected speakers need to send their final papers on or before Friday, January 27, 2017.


Submission via Google Form:


Possible topics for papers include (but are not limited to):

  1. Citizenship and identity
  2. Struggles for civil rights
  3. Struggles for human rights
  4. Cultural representations of citizenship
  5. Political participation
  6. Immigrants’ rights
  7. Migration histories
  8. Globalization and citizenship
  9. Neoliberalism and citizenship
  10. Colonialism and citizenship
  11. Cultural policies and citizenship
  12. Nationalism and citizenship
  13. Violence and citizenship
  14. Race and citizenship
  15. Gender and citizenship
  16. Sexuality and citizenship


Important Dates

• Monday, October 24, 2016: Call for papers opens
• Friday, December 2, 2016: Deadline to send proposals
• Friday, December 16, 2016: Acceptance announcement
• Friday, January 27, 2017: Deadline to send papers (7 double-spaced pages, plus any audiovisual materials, such as powerpoints, pictures, maps, etc…)
• Thursday and Friday, March 2-3, 2017: UPR-UM Conference, University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus


For more information please contact Howard Tsai ( or Juan R. Hernández García (