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EVENTS: Corina (Palasan) Dobos Guest Lecture, Tuesday, April 29, 2014, 6 p.m., Room 4
We are looking forward to a new guest lecture for our Traumatic Affect and Paths of Remembrance series, on Tuesday, April 29, 2014, at 6 pm in Room 4.
Corina (Pălăşan) Doboş (University of Bucharest / University College London) will be talking about the World Population Conference, Bucharest 1974: Politics and Demographical Concerns, debunking Romania's pronatalist policies during the Ceausescu regime.
Abstract: The  World  Population  Conference,  organized  by  the  United  Nations  in Bucharest  in  1974,  at the invitation of the Romanian government, was the first intergovernmental conference to discuss the postwar  “population  problem”  and  the  practical  measures  to  be implemented  by  national governments, calling for urgent governmental intervention through national and international family planning  programs.  These  measures  were  synthesized  in  a  World  Population  Plan  of  Action, adopted by the consensus of the 137 countries represented at the Bucharest Conference. My presentation explores what seems to be the paradox of organizing a family planning debate in a country  where  at  the  time  very  restrictive  pronatalist  measures  were  implemented,  with  no consideration  given to family  planning  or  modern  contraception. I  argue  that  these  tactics  are  better understood  when  contextualized  within  the  particular  dynamics  of the communist  regime  in  Romania:  what appeared to be an open,  democratic  foreign policy actually concealed a domestic Stalinist regime. Looking  for international recognition, Ceauşescu, the “wonderboy” of the Soviet bloc in the  1960s  and  the first  half  of  the  1970s, was  ready  to organize  the World  Population  Conference  in Romania.  Following  his  pronatalist  ethos,  he  used  his  host  position  not  only  to  gain  diplomatic prestige but also to influence the final resolutions taken in Bucharest, so that the pronatalist policy of Romania could continue undisturbed,  as the Romanian hosts managed to formalize the prerogative of deciding  over the number of a family’s or an individual’s children as a governmental and not a personal privilege.
Bio: Corina (Pălăşan) Doboş holds a PhD in History from the University of Bucharest, where she is currently a research assistant. Corina is also a PhD candidate at University College London, with a thesis titled Scientific representations of the ‘body of the criminal’ in modern Romania (1859-1940), focusing on the manner in which the ‘body of the delinquent’ was constructed within the medicalisation process of the juridical sphere in Romania between 1859 and 1945. Her main research interests include bio-politics, the history of criminology, the imaginary of the body, medical semiotics. She has published extensively on these issues, including three books about communist and post-communist policies and memories, i.e. Corina Doboş (ed.), Politica pronatalistă a regimului Ceauşescu. O perspectivă comparative / Pronatalist Policies of the Ceauşescu Regime in Comparative Perspective (Polirom, 2010); Corina Doboş, Marius Stan (eds.), Politics of Memory in Post-communist Europe (Zetabooks, 2010); Cristina Jinga, Florin Soare, Corina Doboş, Cristina Roman (eds.), Politica pronatalistă a regimului Ceauşescu. Instituţii şi practici/ Pronatalist Policies of the Ceauşescu Regime. Institutions and Practices (Polirom, 2011).

Further details about Corina’s lecture: http://americanstudies.ro/libs/docs/1397248583-48583.pdf

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Partenerii nostri: US Embassy | Fulbright Commission in Romania | English Department, Faculty of Foreign Languages,