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LSE Joint Sessions on Critical Europe 2024


Call for Papers

The European Institute at LSE is delighted to announce the LSE Joint Sessions on Critical Europe 2024, a postgraduate session of workshops open to PhD candidates and early-career researchers working in Critical European Studies broadly conceived.

The European continent in many ways remains insecure of its past, present, and future. A succession of (self-diagnosed) financial, migratory, political, and military ‘crises’ over the past decade has led to a European emergency politics that has depicted ‘Europe’ as both deeply desirable and profoundly under threat: In the words of the EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, it figures as an idyllic “garden”, set against an extra-European “jungle” – and the latter is poised to encroach over the garden walls. 

At the same time, decolonial literature has drawn attention to the ways in which the ‘gardener Europe’ has constituted its own image through the construction of the ‘jungle’. Critical scholarship not only continues to scrutinise the bordering practices that are necessary to uphold the garden walls, it also analyses the techniques of cultivation used to weed out harmful plants and maintain the enclosed garden in its pristine and orderly state. 

This symposium invites contributions that engage with any or all aspects of this metaphor: the ‘garden’, the ‘jungle’, or their fertile and messy meeting points at the walls of enclosure. We thus welcome submissions that engage with ‘Europe’ as the site of imagined political communities and their attendant patterns of inclusion, exclusion, and contestation; as a trope undergirding historical imaginaries and phantasms of progress, or as a resource deployed for particular political projects of (dis)empowerment.


We encourage submissions that engage with (any part of) 'Europe’ in a broadly critical vein, and invite contributions from PhD candidates and early-career researchers (ECRs). The workshops build on the European Institute’s and LSE’s enduring engagement with questions of Eurocentrism and its potential ‘beyond’. Any work with a critical approach either to the European space broadly conceived, or that seeks to overcome Eurocentric assumptions and methodologies more generally, is welcome.

The conference will be divided into three workshops: “Violence and the Politics of Memory”, “Neoliberalism and the Political Economy of Precarity”, and “Paternalism and the Politics of Migration.” Applicants are asked to tailor their application to one of these workshops. 



Composed of 11-14 participants each, the workshops provide space for sustained engagement and feedback. To this end, participants are asked to submit research notes of 2,500 - 3,000 words before the workshop which will be circulated no less than two weeks before the session. Attendees are expected to read and comment on one another’s work. During the workshop, each participant will have a chance to present their work for 15 minutes, followed by 30  minutes of exchange with the other attendees. Each workshop will be facilitated by a moderator from the LSE’s European Institute. 


How to submit your proposal

Please submit your application by email to before October, 31st 2023, attaching your abstract (max. 500 words) as a PDF file.

The abstract will outline the research you are planning to present, including your research question, methodology, and (preliminary) conclusions. We encourage the submission of work in progress as well as concluded research projects. Your email should also include the title of your presentation as well as your full name and institutional affiliation.   

Application deadline: 31 October 2023
Applicants informed of submission outcome (including funding application): 7 November 2023
Research note deadline for successful applicants: 8 February 2024

The conference will take place on 22-23 February 2024

22 - 23 Feb 2024 London, United Kingdom
Call for Papers open until 31 Oct 2023