FAHE 2023 Conference Call for Proposals

44th Annual Meeting of the Friends Association for Higher Education

Quakers, Colonization, and Decolonization
June 12-15, 2023

Hosted, in-person and over Zoom, by Haverford College, Haverford PA

Call for Proposals

Proposal submission deadline: March 31

Proposal submission form

Questions? Email: FAHE_Annual_Conference@quakerfahe.com

On June 12-15, 2023, FAHE will hold its annual conference  on the campus of Haverford College. For those who are unable to attend in person, some sessions will be available online.

The FAHE Program Committee invites proposals from Indigenous people, Friends, and academic  faculty, staff and administrators for papers, panels, or workshops related to the conference theme  or other related topics reflecting Quaker concerns in higher education.

As a tool for seeking truth as part of corporate discernment and decision-making, Quakers offer queries to provide focus, direction, and inspiration. Queries to consider in envisioning and crafting proposals include:

  • What is colonization? What has quakerism’s relationship to empire, colonization, and colonized peoples & lands been over the past 4 centuries?  Can colonization/colonialism be a good thing? How do the roots of our colonial histories survive in our communities & continue to feed our institutions, our beliefs, and our practices as Friends, Friends’ institutions, and institutions of higher education?
  • How can current quakerisms survive the anti-colonial critique of both anglo-american empire and christian empire (eg, Gerbner)?
  • What are colonization’s “master’s tools [that] will never dismantle the master’s house”? (Audre Lorde 1979)  How does quakerism continue to serve colonization & empire? What role does christianity play as an imperial tool? How does our english language & culture maintain settler-imperial thought & attitudes?
  • What is decolonization? How has this concept been helpful to our work? How has it been misappropriated and misused?  What actions are we taking to decolonize? What gets in the way?
  • Is decolonization always good? Is empire always bad?  What does decolonized quakerism offer indigenous people? — settler people?
  • What is indigenization? What attraction does quakerism have for indigenous people? Is there agreement among indigenous Friends on the values of empire, decolonization & indigenization? What responsibility does quakerism have for returning Indigenous life to the way it was before colonization, before conversion? Can Friends apply quaker ‘universalism’ to affirm the inherent goodness in Native religion and promote its return as equally or more truthful and enlightened as christianity?
  • How does the quaker value of universalism inform the cultural limitations of traditional colonial-settler quakerism’s single story of christianity? How do Friends integrate & center indigenous stories into friendly practice?
  • What messages (knowledge, experience, challenges) can indigenous people who have suffered the impacts of colonial & imperial oppression bring to this conference? What are the responsibilities of quakers who have benefited from or even perpetuated these oppressions?
  • What research is being done concerning land theft that benefits our colleges, our meetings, and our institutions? What efforts are being made towards repair/reparations? What important research is not being done, and why?
  • What curricular and co-curricular programs are we developing that effectively explore the growing edges of this field of decolonization & indigenization?
  • How can Quaker academics and Quaker institutions support the movement for healing the trauma caused by Quaker Indigenous boarding schools and colonial-settler assimilation & cultural genocide?
  • How can this work be done justly, with integrity, and with respect for and participation of impacted peoples?
  • How do indigenous truth and justice prosper among us? What do indigenous love and truth require of us?

Papers, panels, and workshops can explore these issues as well as other areas of participants’ research.

The FAHE Program Committee requests your submissions by March 31, 2023.  If you have any questions, please email the program committee at:


Proposal submission form:  https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScG6ld6-V7Flz9aIPcKpYqnpK9-m-k50EcRxVxftpOjAMpnoA/viewform

The Friends Association for Higher Education was conceived in 1979 by a group of educators seeking to bring together faculty, staff and administrators at historically Quaker colleges and universities, as well as Friends teaching at other institutions. Since its founding, FAHE has met annually at Friends institutions of higher education around the US and beyond, engaging educators and scholars in ongoing dialogue around Quaker concerns in higher education. From the very beginning, Friends have embraced a strong commitment to education, and Friends schools and colleges have attracted and welcomed both Quaker and non-Quaker educators alike who resonate with the historic Friends commitment to educating the whole person, guided by the Quaker testimonies of simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality, and (especially in recent decades) sustainability.

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