Haitian Studies Association

Announcements & Statements, Past Conferences

H.S.A.’s 35th Annual Conference – Call for Papers



Ayiti Se Tè Glise:

Im/Migration, Movement & In-Betweenness

October 5th – 8th, 2023

Morehouse College – Atlanta, Georgia

Ayiti se tè glise illuminates the notion that Haiti is an eternally shifting landscape. Haitians continuously move within their nation and also migrate to diasporic spaces. This adage also alludes to conflicting paradigms for Haitians in and beyond Haiti as they negotiate various cultural identities and navigate their liminality (i.e. Haitian-American, Haitian-Canadian, Haitian-Bahamian, Haitian-Dominican, etc.). Following the 2010 and 2021 earthquakes, many Haitians have migrated to South American countries such as Chile and Brazil. In recent years, numerous Haitians have traveled to Mexico in hopes of eventually journeying to the U.S. via California and Texas in search of a better future. Ever versatile in maneuvering their in-betweenness, Haitians continually forge new communities at home and transnationally with the power to transform Haiti’s future. How might Ayiti se tè glise provide a call for Haitian Studies to contend with the versatility, slippery nature, and instability of Haitian land, identities, concepts, constructs, and expressions?

During our 35th annual conference, we invite scholars, activists, and artists (filmmakers, painters, singers, dancers, etc.) to explore the mobility of Haitians with regards to their cultural and political identities. We will explore the following themes and questions among others:

  • How do Haitians negotiate in-betweenness and liminality in their various experiences?
  • How have immigration laws shaped Haitian migration and settlements historically?
  • How have economic and political conditions at various historical moments in Haiti shaped patterns of immigration to North America, South America and other regions of the world?
  • How does transnationalism impact the development of new identities and adaptation in the host country?
  • How do immigrants negotiate work spaces and labor issues in a new land?
  • What are some of the impacts for Haitians living binary lives that include bilingual or trilingual linguistic identities?
  • How do Haitian literary texts produced in global sites, including but not limited to Haiti, reflect this liminality and plurality?
  • What roles have various religions (as spiritual, social and religious practices) played in the lives of Haitian and Haitian Diasporic im/migrants? How do religious communities abroad remain connected to Haiti?
  • How does im/migration influence gender identity/gender roles in these diasporic spaces? How has gender/sexuality influenced im/migration and notions of Haitian belonging?
  • What might a focus on the body and embodied experience open up in our examination of Haiti/and our relationships to Ayiti and/or “Ayiti se tè glise”?
  • How do artists remain connected and stay in close relation with Haiti? How do experiences of in-betweenness influence their art?
  • How do ties forged in new communities allow Haitians to thrive in different foreign lands?
  • How is class negotiated by new Haitian immigrant communities? How is in-betweenness used as a coping strategy against discrimination and racism?
  • How are new identities and emergent strategies negotiated in different geographic locations? How have the various waves of Haitian migrants historically and spatially negotiated new environments in North and South America, Europe, Africa, and other parts of the Caribbean?
  • What does seeking citizenship in new host countries change relationships with lakay? What forms do contingent citizenship take in different countries?
  • How does the concept of tè glise challenge standing beliefs of community and help re-envision new forms of agency and communication?
  • How has “digital humanities” (DH) built new tools for understanding the cultural impact of Haitian immigration, movement, and in-betweenness?
  • How do digital platforms affect Haitian identity, cultural awareness and in-betweenness in the Diaspora?
  • How do writers and artists represent Haitians living in Haiti and those who are lòt bò dlo in their literary and cultural work?

Proposals for papers, panels, film/video presentations, workshops, and roundtables are due by 1 May 2023.

Guidelines for Participation

Types of submissions

There are four (4) broad categories of presentations that can be submitted:

  • Single papers written by one or multiple authors. Individual proposals will be grouped with up to three (3) other proposals of similar theme to form a panel. Each individual presentation is limited to 15 minutes. Sessions are 75 minutes long.
  • Full panels. Group proposals should include a Chair/Discussant and up to four (4) panelists who wish to present together on a topic of their choice. Fully constituted panels have an entire time slot of 75 minutes. For panel proposals, please include a title, author and overview for each paper on the proposal form.
  • Thematic roundtables or workshops. Roundtable proposals should include no more than four participants as well as a Chair/Moderator, who must also be identified on the proposal form. “Roundtables” are open discussions, not a collection of individual papers. Instead of discrete paper titles, roundtable proposals should include the questions that will be used to lead the discussion. Workshop proposals should focus on particular skills to be gained and specific details about format and activities.
  • Video/ film presentations. Proposals that include short documentaries or excerpts from longer films will be placed together with 2 other video/film presentations. Keep in mind that sessions are 75 minutes long. If your work is longer than 20 minutes, please make sure to note this in your abstract so we can determine early on if accommodations are possible.


In order to ensure blind review, reviewers will only see the abstract. Your abstract must not include your name, affiliation, or any other identifying information. All proposals must be “blinded” for review.

For individual submissions, please include a 250-word abstract of your presentation/ paper. The abstract should include:

  • Topic and objectives
  • Methodology
  • Key results or arguments
  • Conclusion

If you need to add supplementary materials, such as images or a video trailer, please contact H.S.A. to make sure the materials are added to the proposal.

For group submissions, please include a 500-word summary/ abstract for the group proposal. The overview should include:

  • Title
  • Purpose, goals, and objectives
  • Methodology
  • Conclusions and/or questions raised

Contact Information

For every submission, it is essential that contact information (name, affiliation, and email) be provided for each individual participant listed on the proposal form. In addition, there must be one (1) designated person who will be the main email recipient. For pre-organized panels, other names listed may be contacted, but it is the designated person’s responsibility to ensure everyone on the proposal form is kept informed and up to date on communication with H.S.A.

Participation Limitation

H.S.A. welcomes as many people as possible to participate in the conference. Therefore, each participant is limited to one (1) paper presentation. However, members can perform more than one role— such as presenting a paper and chairing a panel or presenting a paper and participating in a roundtable discussion. The maximum number of times a participant should be listed in the program is two (2).


Registration will begin July 30, 2023. All presenters must be members of HSA to present, and must register and pay by September 1, 2023, to participate in the conference.

Proposal Review and Selection Process

An anonymous review of each conference proposal will be conducted by a minimum of two reviewers. Proposals will be reviewed on the basis of quality and contribution to the theme of the conference.

Notification of Decision

Decisions regarding acceptance of proposals will be announced around June 15, 2023.

Publication in the Journal of Haitian Studies

Manuscripts prepared from conference presentations can be submitted for publication in the Journal of Haitian Studies (JOHS) at the end of the conference. All manuscripts will be peer-reviewed and subject to an editing process prior to final acceptance. Manuscripts should not have been published elsewhere in similar form with substantially similar content. For information on the JOHS, please contact Dr. Claudine Michel at claudine.michel@ucsb.edu.

Please contact us if you have questions regarding the proposal submission process.