The European Society for Oceanists (ESfO) hosts a conference every second year for an international audience, including researchers and students from most European countries, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand (see http://www.esfo-org.eu/). The last c onference at the University of St Andrews, Scotland had 280 participants, 24 workshops, four plenary lectures, three panel debates and as exhibitions, performances, media events and lectures open to the public.
In 2012 we shall commemorate the enduring significance of Oceania in global trajectories of history, ideas, politics, economy and ecology. We invite participants and panels to reflect on the unique position of the region with regard to its cultural and linguistic diversity, its ecological and ge ographical distinctness, and its position as a region full of experiments and experiences with social and political formations.
The conference aspires to expand understandings of the ways in which Oceania continues to contribute materials to the world at large:
-Resource materials of economic and ecological significance
-Political materials that convey alternatives and challenges to current models of social organization and of nation, statehood and democracy
-Artistic and visual materials that evoke th e cultural vibrancy of the Pacific
-Religious materials that engage Christian images in localized concerns
The conference will feature the Sir Raymond Firth Memorial Lecture by Prof. Vilsoni Hereniko of the University of the South Pacific, one of the reg ion's most prominent indigenous scholars. We aim to invite five Pacific scholars as plenary speakers and panel leaders. There will up to twenty different workshops going over four days, including performances of Pacific art.
The Chair of the ESfo is Pr ofessor Knut Rio at Bergen Museum, and the team of organizers includes Professor Edvard Hviding and Associate Professor Annelin Eriksen at the Dept of Social Anthropology at Bergen