We are pleased to introduce ourselves as the 2020 ABA Program Committee. We are: karen g. williams, Mieka Brand Polanco, Holly Okonkwo, and Tiffany Marquise. We look forward to putting together a solid and stimulating program and poised to work with you as we prepare for the 2020 meetings in Saint Louis, Missouri. We also proudly note that our own Bianca Williams is serving as this year’s Executive Program Chair for the AAA conference.

You might already know that 2020 is a special year for the ABA, as it marks our section’s 50th anniversary. We look forward to celebrating this momentous milestone in Saint Louis. The Executive Board has been ginning up some rich events, and we hope you will contribute too by putting together a thought-provoking, boundary-breaking, celebratory roster of panels, papers, posters, and events. Here are some notes to keep in mind as you plan your own conference participation:

  • Truth and Responsibility: The overall theme for the 2020 AAA meetings is Truth and Responsibility. The Call For Papers for this theme opens with the following provocation:

“Truth and Responsibility” is a call to reimagine anthropology to meet the demands of the present moment. The imperative to bear witness, take action, and be held accountable to the truths we write and circulate invites us to reflect on our responsibility in reckoning with disciplinary histories, harms, and possibilities. To whom are we giving evidence and toward what ends? For whom are we writing? To whom are we accountable, and in what ways?

You can read the full Call for Papers here. There are abundant ways our collective research comes to bear on these questions. For submissions for ABA review, you may want to interrogate topics that address what gets counted as “truth” – and who gets to decide; who becomes accountable for wrongdoings – and to whom do they bear responsibility; Who gets left out of the accountability ecosystem, etc. We look forward to seeing your submissions. The deadline for abstract proposal submissions is April 8 at 3 pm.

  • 3 PM?? Just wanted to underscore that deadline time. It is not the end of the day. Not even 5 pm. It is smack in the middle of the afternoon: 3 PM, people. Don’t miss it.

  • 50th Anniversary: The Association of Black Anthropologists turns 50! We hope you use this opportunity to propose panels and events that commemorate ABA’s past, celebrate what it is now, or imagine its future, as well as panels that reflect the breadth and depth of past and present members, and their impact on the discipline.

  • Invited Panels: Note that we are able to host only a very limited number of invited panels. If you think your panel ought to be considered for “invited” status, please (1) reach out to us at ABAProgramCommittee@gmail.comto give us a head’s up and discuss; (2) Let us know whether your panel might potentially be co-sponsored with another section, as this will increase the number of panels we are able to invite.

  • Waived Registration Fee: You can find information about Financial Assistance and Support for the AAA Annual Meeting here. Please note that the deadline for Waived Registration Fee applications is March 18, 2020.

  • We’re here for you: Reach out with any questions as you prepare your abstracts and panels. We’ll do our best to answer – or direct you to someone who can. Our email is ABAProgramCommittee@gmail.com .