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Identity, Violence and Women Symposium

Call for Papers


Collaboration with Ibn Haldun University (Istanbul), The EFL University (India) & Umran Academic Research Association (Istanbul)

Identity is an ambiguous and slippery term (Buckingham, 2008). Identity can mark both similarities and differences and is used in many different contexts for many different purposes. The term explains what we share with other people (Buckingham, 2018); thus, it can be understood more easily when put into parochial contexts such as national identity, gender identity, cultural identity, and more. Identity is prominent in peaceful conditions, but even more during the presence of conflict. Miriam cooke’s Dancing in Damascus elaborates how identity can keep many people on the ground during the time of suppression. She tells the story of how the artists and intellectuals present to the world the resilience of revolutionary resistance. Their creative response to emotional and physical violence with the works of art is not merely a reflection of emotions but also an act to keep the revolution alive.


Indeed, memory is an essential element of identity building and perseverance of its existence. However, the term can be problematic as a person may hold more than one different identity and is obliged to accept certain values or behave following certain ways. Not only that these values can clash and cause conflict within one’s self, but differences of identities among groups may also trigger conflict and violence. Within this term, identity shall be understood as a ground or basis for social or political action (Brubaker & Cooper, 2000).


Allen and Anderson (2017) mentioned that the most common scientific definition for violence is an extreme form of aggression that has serious physical harm as its goal. However, in order for an action to be claimed as violent, it does not necessarily involve harm. The attempt or intention to harm is enough to claim whether the action is violence. In this context, aggression and violence are very much connected. Violence is an instance of aggression, and while all violence is part of aggression, not all aggression can be considered violence. Indeed, the subject is closely attached to identity. Amartya Sen (2006) even went so far as to claim that most of the conflicts that emerge in our contemporary world arise from the problem of identity, the notion of who they are, which group they belong to, and how these define themselves as the opposition of others. The tendency to see one another as opposition brings a new dimension of identity, for example, religion, as the cause of conflict. Bruce B Lawrence (2020) also mentions that a competitive relation between two religious groups can be based on a zero-sum game: the victory of one group means the loss to the other. Here, religion does not only function as faith but also ideology. He later emphasizes that the relationship between the majority and the minority in a country is very prominent in this matter. Although it is difficult to reach the highest degree of equality, the government should work more on creating a more transparent and accessible notion of citizenship. Because to reach equality is, most of the time, the most pragmatic goal of minority groups. And if it is not achieved, the consequence may be destructive.


It is not always men who fight. When it comes to who does the violent activities, we are encouraged to evaluate women’s position as well. The easiest way to do this is to look at how women are also attracted to radicalization. Study shows that women with the background of poor and uneducated are more vulnerable to join radical groups and practice violent behaviour (Badran, 2006). However, is it only a certain grievance that encourages women to act violently? How much does identity have a portion of influencing women to involve in violent radical groups? Attempting to understand this matter, this symposium is to bring well-accomplished female scholars to talk about identity, violence, and their connection to the increasing participation of violent behaviour from women.

The Symposium will also cover the following areas (sub-themes)-

(1) Gender and Violence

(2) Reconstruction of Identity and the Self through and against Violence

(3) Violence and Narrative/Artistic Representations

(4) Violence and the Psyche/Psychologism

(5) Forms of Violence and their Politics

(6) Violence and the Dispensation of Justice

(7) Rethinking Gender Violence: Women Sexuality, and Violence

(8) Gender Violence in the Technical Age

(9) Sexual Violence in Commercial Advertisements, Media, and Cinema

(10) Women identity in Media and Cinema

(11) Gender and Sexual Violence: Cultural Industry

(12) Women Identity and Violence at Home and in the Society

(13) Gender and Cultural Values

(14) Identity, Violence, and Woman in the Civilizational Context


References to mention books and articles:

Women’s Movements in Post-“Arab Spring” North Africa (Edited by Fatima Sadiqi)

Goal of the Symposium

UMRAN is organizing this symposium to re-think identity and violence by bringing scholars from various countries together in the academic milieu to encourage communication in the society and inspire humanity to achieve peace and compassion.

The Purpose of the Event: 

• To discuss the current issues concerning women, violence, and identity and provide insightful information for the interested audience.

• To provide the possibility of scholarly debates concerning the chosen topic to emerge both from the panelists and the audiences, and to provide the interested audience the facility to build connection with the panelists and receive guidance 

The Panelists: 

Dr. Heba E Raouf (Egypt), the Alliance of Civilizations, Ibn Haldun University, Turkey

Dr. Raouf is Professor at the Department of Civilizations Studies and the Department of Political Science and International Relations, Ibn Haldun University, Istanbul Turkey. Her research domains include comparative political theory, changing maps of citizenship and urban sociology.

Dr. miriam cooke (USA), Duke University, USA

Dr. cooke is an American academic in Middle Eastern and Arab world studies. She focuses on modern Arabic literature and critical reassessment of women’s roles in the public sphere. She was educated in the United Kingdom, and is co-editor of the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies.

Dr. Mousumi G Banerjee (India), The EFL University Shillong, India

Dr. Banerjee is Associate Professor & Head, Department of English Literature, The EFL University, Regional Campus, Shillong, Meghalaya, India. She has been a Fulbright-Nehru Postdoctoral Research Fellow and a Visiting Scholar (2019- 2020), at Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts, USA. She is also an Associate with the Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS), Shimla, India. Her research interests include literary theories, postmodern criticisms, Western philosophy, text, language, and hermeneutics, poetic language, women’s writing and writings about women and film criticism.

Dr. Bruce B Lawrence (USA), Alliance of Civilizations, Ibn Haldun University, Turkey

Dr. Lawrence is Professor Emeritus of Religion at Duke University & Visiting Professor at Department of Civilizations Studies, Ibn Haldun University; Nancy and Jeffrey Marcus Humanities Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Religion. His research domains include the Comparative Study of Religious Movements, Institutional Islam (especially in Asia), Indo-Persian Sufism, the Religious Masks of Violence, Contemporary Islam as Abrahamic Faith and Religious Ideology.

Dr. Farhat Nasreen (India), Professor of History and Honorary Director of The Centre for Jawaharlal Nehru Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia, India.

Dr. Nasreen is Professor of History and Honorary Director of The Centre for Jawaharlal Nehru Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), New Delhi, and the Managing Editor of the Journal of History and Sociology of South Asia of Sage Publications. She taught the cadets at Indian Military Academy (IMA), Dehradun, before joining JMI in 1999. She has published 6 books and many papers from reputed national and international publication houses. Her book: If History Has Taught Us Anything has been converted into an audiobook as well. She has delivered over a hundred and thirty papers and invited talks. Current areas of interest are Morality and Ethics.

Important Dates:

Deadline for submitting the abstract – 20/09/2021 

An acceptance email will be sent by – 30/09/2021 

Deadline for submitting the full paper – 31/10/2021 

Notification for the selection of full paper – 10/11/2021 

Date for paper presentation – 20/11/2021 & 21/11/2021 (November)

Place: (ZOOM) 


Session 1: Dr. Heba Raouf

Session 2: Dr. miriam cooke

Session 3: Dr. Mousumi G Banerjee

Session 4: Dr. Bruce B Lawrence

Session 5: Dr. Farhat Nasreen


Target Audience: 

• Academics • Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. students • Researchers • General audience

Please submit a 175-300 word abstract for a 10-minute long paper presentation by 20/09/2021. In case of any further queries, mail us at umran.org.in@gmail.com

Submit AbstractClick here

Supported by:

Dr. Bruce B Lawrence
Professor Emeritus of Religion at Duke University & Visiting Professor at Ibn Haldun University, Istanbul, Turkey.
Dr. Vahdettin Isik
Dean of Alliance of Civilizations Institute, Ibn Haldun University, Istanbul, Turkey.
Dr. Mousumi G Banerjee
Head, Department of English Literature, The EFL University, Regional Campus, Shillong, India.
Dr. Heba E Rouf
Department of Political Science & International Relations and Alliance of Civilizations, Ibn Haldun University, Turkey

Rajeev Kumar: Founder and Managing Director of UMRAN, Master in Arts and Teaching Fellow at Ibn Haldun University, Istanbul, Turkey.

UMRAN ACADEMIC RESEARCH ASSOCIATION (UARA) UARA Members: Rizky Amallia, Bashingwa Mateso, Shams Tabrez, Saadat Eskandarifar, Swasti Bisai

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