School of Modern Languages

Events Items

Contemporary Spaces of (Greater) Central Asia

This workshop will bring together postgraduate students and early career researchers to share their knowledge and expertise on the (Greater) Central Asia region.

Date/Time: 21 - 22 March 2017

Venue: The Research Beehive, Newcastle University

Annual Navro'z / Nawruz Postgraduate Workshop on Central Asia
Asian Studies Research Group, Newcastle University

Contemporary Spaces of (Greater) Central Asia
Tuesday 21 – Wednesday 22 March 2017

Including: Rachel Harris (keynote lecture) and Madeleine Reeves (keynote workshop)

Workshop aims

The purpose of this workshop is to bring together postgraduate students (PGRs) and early career researchers from the UK, mainland Europe and beyond to share their knowledge and expertise on the (Greater) Central Asia region, which includes the Former-Soviet Central Asian nations and Chinese Central Asia (known variously as the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region or East Turkestan).

The workshop will provide an opportunity to present new research findings, stimulate discussion, and debate current hot topics across Central Asian geographical, social and cultural space, irrespective of contemporary political boundaries.

Participants will have the chance to present their ongoing research projects and receive feedback from student peers and more experienced researchers in the field.

The workshop offers a great opportunity to meet and network with other scholars working on and in (Greater) Central Asia.


We are particularly keen to address the frequent exclusion of studies on Xinjiang/East Turkestan within the broad academic discipline of ‘Central Asian studies’, and for this reason our keynote speaker (Dr Rachel Harris, Reader in Ethnomusicology, Centre of Contemporary Central Asia and the Caucasus, SOAS, University of London) will this year consider the topic of “Xinjiang in Central Asia/Central Asian Studies.”

Individual papers and panels with a Xinjiang focus will therefore be presented alongside those on the independent nations of Central Asia, and those which look at historical and contemporary links between Former-Soviet and Chinese Central Asia are especially welcome. In this way, we seek to find out what scholars of Xinjiang and Former-Soviet Central Asia can learn from one another.

While the regional geographical scope focuses on the five countries of Former-Soviet Central Asia and on Xinjiang/East Turkestan, we also invite papers on neighbouring territories with cultural and historical affinities such as the Caucasus, Mongolia and Afghanistan.

We will be joined by Dr Madeleine Reeves, editor of Central Asian Survey, the leading journal in our field, who will run a talk and Q&A session titled “Publishing without perishing? Navigating academia in precarious times."


Narwuz programme (PDF:482KB)


The workshop will take place in the Research Beehive, 2nd floor, Old Library Building, Newcastle University. Refreshments/lunches will be provided.

There will be a conference dinner on the evening of Wednesday 21 March, following the keynote lecture.

Accommodation in the city can be found here.


Register for the event online at the Newcastle University webstore.

Further information

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Contemporary Spaces of (Greater) Central Asia