The 150 year crisis!

22 September 2011

Deakin workshop to look at revisiting territorial separatism in world politics.

The Centre for Citizenship, Development and Human Rights is sponsoring a workshop on 24th and 25th November, 2011.

The aim of this workshop is to offer a contemporary overview of the secessionist phenomenon. The reference in the title to ‘the 150 year crisis’ reflects the long history of separatism starting from Fort Summer in 1861 and having as its latest development the independence of Southern Sudan in July 2011.

Secessionism gained further momentum in the post World War II era and in particular since the conclusion of the
Cold War. The point of departure for this workshop is the view that separatism constitutes an ongoing crisis in world politics. Two reasons may account for this perpetual crisis. First, secessionism called into question the belief that the liberal state could maintain a neutral standing towards identity differences in its effort to promote the common interest.

Secondly, as an offshoot of the Westphalian world order, territorial separatism is pursued by national minorities who wish to fulfill their political project through independence, hence obtaining a place in the international community. The themes of the workshop include (re)investigation of the causes of territorial separatism, (re)assessment of peace processes as well as (re)consideration of the role of justice in resolving secessionist cases.

The speakers will be:

Peter Radan: Macquarie University
Paper title: Secession: A Question of Law or Fact?

Clinton Fernandes: University of New South Wales
Paper title: Recognition as a political act: Political considerations in Australia and the UK’s divergent
approaches to recognising Indonesia’s annexation of East Timor.

Benjamin Isakhan: Deakin University
Paper title: Succeeding and Seceding in Iraq

David Feith: Monash University
Paper title: Separatism in Sri Lanka – deceased or dormant?

Terry Narramore: University of Tasmania.
Paper title: Containing Secession? Challenges to China’s Control of the ‘East Turkestan’/Xinjiang Uighur
Autonomous Region'.

Aleksandar Pavković: Macquarie University
Paper title: Secession: a much contested concept?

Damien Kingsbury, Deakin University
Paper title: Vertical Distinction as Civic Failure: State-Nation Disjuncture

Costas Laoutides, Deakin University
Paper title: From Crisis to Resolution: Secession and peacebuiding

To register: asap as there are limited places
Enquiries: Ph: 03 5227 2113 Email:

Professor Damien Kingsbury Professor Damien Kingsbury will present a paper titled: Vertical Distinction as Civic Failure: State-Nation Disjuncture.

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