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PEWS 2019 Conference: De-Linking - Critical Thought and Radical Politics

43rd Annual Conference on the Political Economy of the World-System

 Albert-Ludwigs-University of Freiburg, Germany
 April 11–13, 2019


Delinking as a counterstrategy in a structurally unequal world-system has featured prominently in different social science approaches to radical emancipatory  politics, from dependency theory and world-systems analysis to decolonial thought. Understood as self-reliance or autonomous development of the peripheries (Amin 1992), as anti- or deglobalization (Bello 2004), as a choice between dewesternization and decolonization (Mignolo 2007) or, more recently, as a comprehensive move to “depatriarchalise, de-racialise, de-tribalise, decolonise, de-imperialise and democratise” (Ndlovu-Gatsheni 2017), the notion of delinking has mobilized critical thought and political imaginations alike. At the same time, an overemphasis on delinking entails the risk of overlooking linkages and multi-directional interactions beyond the modern world-system, or the uneven dynamics of inter-imperiality (Doyle 2014). The 43rd annual conference on the Political Economy of the World-System revisits approaches to (de)linking and the concept’s past and present (re)formulations as economic, sociopolitical, epistemic and cultural paths to pluriversality and a polycentric world. It welcomes both theoretical and empirical treatments of processes of linking and delinking as well as methodological reflections on the terms’ potential for the political economy of the world-system.


Message from Immanuel Wallerstein

How to get there

  • Arriving at Freiburg Breisgau Hauptbahnhof: Take the local tram no. 1, 2, 3 or 4 and get out at "Bertoldsbrunnen".
  • Parking: The next parking deck is "Kollegiengebäude", Platz der Universität 3, Humboldtstraße via Rempartstraße
    79098 Freiburg





  • Conference Venue:
    Großer Saal
    Haus zur lieben Hand
    Löwenstraße 16
    79098 Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany
    Tram No. 2 or 5 to „Bertoldsbrunnen“


  • Contact:
    Prof. Dr. Manuela Boatca
    Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
    Institut für Soziologie
    Rempartstraße 15
    79098 Freiburg
    +49 761 203-3495


  • Office:
    Sarina Frank & Elke Goldschmidt
    Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
    Institut für Soziologie
    Rempartstraße 15
    79098 Freiburg
    +49 761 203-3490




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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Friday, April 12, 2019

Saturday, April 13, 2019


Panel 3. (De)Linking and Development Strategies
9.30 - 12 a.m.

Panel 6. Ecosystemic Linkages and Alternatives (to) Energy 10 - 12 a.m.

Robert Schaeffer: Voluntary and Involuntary Delinking: Africa and the External Arena

Alexander Araya-López:  De-Touristifying Cities: Social Movements and the Global Tourism Industry

Wai Kit Choi / David Smith: Delinking, China and the Specter of Dependent Development

Tamás Geröcs / Agnes Gagyi: Building national capital through the state in Hungary. Repositioning in inter-capitalist class alliances in the context of geopolitical reconfiguration and semi-peripheral dependent development

Ganesh Trichur / Micah Murphy: ‘Autonomy and Delinking in a Polycentric World-System’
Juan Pablo Vásquez Bustamante: An Ecuadorian Perspective on the Global Environmental Debate. Peripheral Perspective and Critical Thought in the Modern World-System

Devparna Roy: Deglobalizing, greening & nationalizing India's agriculture?

Salvatore Babones and John H.S. Asberg: Entropy and Empire?

Shaohua Zhan: Linking and De-Linking: the Politics of Food Imports in China

Welcome and Introduction
2 p.m.

LUNCH BREAK: 12 - 1 p.m.

LUNCH BREAK: 12 - 1 p.m.

Panel 1. Spaces of (De)Linking in the Caribbean and Beyond
2:30 - 4 p.m.

Panel 4. Migration as (De)Linking
1 - 3:30 p.m.

Panel 7. Inter-Imperiality and (De)Linkings
1 - 2 p.m.

Agustín Lao-Montes: Beyond Imperial Borders and Developmentalist Dreams. Imagining Possible Decolonial Futures from a Counterpoint of Cuba and Puerto Rico

Laurin Blecha: From “Colonial Backwater” to “Global Hot Spot” (?) – Central America during the Long 19th Century

Luis J. Beltrán-Alvarez: Puerto Rico as a geopolitical site of de-linking. Social justice struggles and decolonial attitudes in post-hurricane María experiences
Corey Payne: Linking, Delinking, and Creative Destruction: Networks, Elites, and Labour

Fabio Santos: Unveiling Guyane’s Migratory and Economic Delinkings

Caroline Schöpf: Why the migration and human capital literature fails to predict the labor market advantage of White migrants in Hong Kong

Ioana Țîștea: Re-reading the history of migrant "integration" in Finland from both a postcolonial and a postsocialist perspective

Daria Krivonos: Living under the Conditions of the Global 'Posts': Post-Soviet Youth Migration to Helsinki, Finland

Manuela Boatcă / Anca Parvulescu: The world(-system) seen from a Transylvanian Village

Comments by Laura Doyle

COFFEE BREAK: 4 - 4.30 p.m.

COFFEE BREAK: 3:30 - 4 p.m.


Panel 2. The Balkans’ Inter-Imperial Linkages
4.30 - 6.30 p.m.

Panel 5. (De)Linking between Decolonizing and Conservative Politics
4  - 6.30 p.m.

Graduate student workshop
2 - 5 p.m.

Yasemin Bavbek/Juho Korhonen: From an "Insignificant Balkan State" to a "Country of White Lilies". Nation-Making from Russian Empire’s Periphery to Post-Ottoman Turkey

Zoltán Ginelli: Plotting the Semiperipheral Empire. Hungarian Balkanism and Global Colonialism in Geographical Knowledge, 1867-1948

Corina Dobos: For a genealogical study of the postwar political economy of population: from Eastern Europe to the Global South

Zenonas Norkus: Making New Europe? After-Life and Return of Ancient Empires in the Current De-Linkings and Re-Linkings at the Eastern Frontier of the European Union
Christian Lekon: Return to Normalcy? Delayed hegemonic transition and the world revolution of 1919

David Smith, Paul Cicantell, Elizabeth Sowers: Deconstructing Global Commodity Chains and Redefining U.S. Conservative Politics

Peter Wilkin: Scary Monsters and Super Creeps: Brexit and the Apocalypse

Rodrigo Luiz Medeiros da Silva: Social Conservatism, Economic Liberalism and International Alliances in the Emerging Semi-periphery: a comparison between contemporary Brazil and India

Jonathon Acosta: No MAS: Who said ‘No’ to Evo?
César Bazán Seminário: Between brown-skin people: the coloniality of power and the actors of the Peruvian justice system

Ingrid Pavezi: The European Borders pressed to the Global South: notes on the externalization of borders through the politics of agreements for refugees and migrants between the E.U. and “Safe Third Countries”

Krista Lillemets: Epistemological de-linkings and historical linkings: the analysis of slave and non-wage labor forms in the works of Caio Prado Jr. and Maria Sylvia de Carvalho Franco

Rosa Oconnor Acevedo: Marginal resistance: delinking by remembering and rewriting collective memories of struggle; the case of marronage

Daniel Köhler: Samir Amin: The Globalization of Marxist Theory. On the actuality of the Third Way.

Keynote: 7 p.m.
Roberto Patricio Korzeniewicz - Double Movements in the Longue Durée: Inclusion, Exclusion and Creative Destruction

Keynote: 6:45 p.m.
Laura Doyle –
"The Labors of Inter-Imperiality: Sublations, Systems, Interventions"

Conference Tour:
Postcolonial Freiburg
05:30 p.m. - 07:30 p.m.

Wine and cheese reception

Conference Dinner


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