Annual Meeting

"Global Migrations: Empires, Nations, and Neighbors": The Theme of the 130th Annual Meeting

Vicki L. Ruiz, Maria E. Montoya, and Douglas Haynes | Sep 2, 2014


Credit: Rio Grande Historical Collections, New Mexico State, Las Cruces.

Mexican women arriving by themselves in El Paso, 1911. Rio Grande Historical Collections, New Mexico State, Las Cruces.

The movement of people, ideas, and goods has shaped human history, igniting the imagination, etching the landscape, and transforming identity. For educators and scholars, migration represents a powerful lens through which to reconstruct sacred travel, trace trade routes, illuminate diasporas, and map the scale and scope of globalization. However, our conversations on the subject tend to be bound within the norms and conventions of intradisciplinary specialties or by temporal or continental divides. With this theme, we hope to facilitate more dialogue among colleagues that may enrich research, teaching, and public knowledge. Panels that bring into conversation multiple perspectives on migration are particularly encouraged; such perspectives might include commerce and trade, citizenship and belonging, colonialism and decolonization, disease and epidemics, environment and land, food and food ways, health and healing, gender and mobility, labor (enslaved, contract, or voluntary), modes of travel and tourism, political movements and revolution, racializing bodies and representing difference, segregation and integration, sexuality and sex work, and sovereignty and territoriality, among others.

Global migrations occur in the everyday given the confluence of peoples and cultures in motion. Tourism, for example, represents a form of migration whether for religious pilgrimages, health care, or recreation. The mediation of memory found in private thoughts and public commemorations contributes to our understanding of our past and present. For example, the contestation of memory that played out in a scene from John Sayles’s film Lone Star in which a young history teacher defended her curriculum against angry parents perhaps foretold the current controversy over what can be taught in history classrooms across Texas. Indeed, as practitioners of history, we have expanded our toolkit to include research methodologies and critical theories from the humanities, the social sciences, the arts, and at times the sciences. We welcome submissions that demonstrate this expansion of the archive from data mining to literary imaginaries, as well as the importance of historical insights for public life, policy, and discourse. Panels that offer models of history as public engagement are particularly encouraged.


Credit: National Gallery of Art Rosenwald Collection

Sixteenth-century engraving of an armed three-master with Daedalus and Icarus in the sky.

Vicki L. Ruiz (Univ. of California, Irvine) is the president-elect of the AHA; she will preside over the 130th annual meeting. María E. Montoya (New York Univ.) is the chair of the 2016 Program Committee, and Douglas Haynes (Univ. of California, Irvine) is the co-chair.

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