The Newsletter 96 Autumn 2023

Recollections of ABRN6

Makiko Kimura

I attended the first session of the ABRN conference held in Guwahati, Assam, India, when I was still a post-doctorate scholar engaging in fieldwork in the area. At the time (and to some extent even today) it was very rare to have an international conference in Northeast India. I was really excited to take part in the event and learn about the concept of border studies, which was significantly related to my research area.

Since then, I have attended four sessions of the conference (the first, third, fifth and sixth) and enjoyed each and every one. For me, it is a rare international arena where I can meet and catch up with scholars working on Northeast India and neighboring areas. At the same time, as the conference takes place in different parts of Asia, I can observe new themes and topics being presented and discussed. This gives the conference both continuity and change, and I’ve been able to learn about emerging trends in border studies discussions.

I’ve also enjoyed long-term friendships with many of the participants—some of whom I have known for decades. It was fun to enjoy an excursion to Kyrgyzstan together, although I somehow hurt my foot and suffered bad internal bleeding on the journey back. I would like to thank Willem van Schendel and his co-convenors for keeping this brilliant network alive, and Martina van den Haak, who has been managing its logistics for many years!


Makiko Kimura, Tsuda University, Japan