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Grass-root initiatives and volunteer networks for refugee relief, climate activism and most recently 'corona-networks' are on the rise. Discussing previous examples of social and religious activism in history, this panel explores 'the vernaculars' of everyday mobilisation in past and present.
Human mobility, climate change and pandemics are increasingly putting questions of collective responsibility and joint decision making to the test. At civil society level grass-root initiatives, refugee relief networks and climate activism have been on the rise within the past decade. Most recently the covid-19 pandemic has spurred a wide range of 'corona networks' and neighbour to neighbour assistance with e.g. grocery shopping and home cleaning aimed at vulnerable co-citizens. These mobilisations are local reactions to global issues. They create new forms of everyday activism and informal modes of volunteering. In order to capture the plurality of such small-scale and less organized modes of helping out in everyday life, terms like "vernacular humanitarianism" (Brkovic 2017) or "everyday humanitarianism" (Richey 2018) have been suggested. Whereas the activities mentioned above can be seen as new modes of everyday mobilisations, mobilising the everyday into social movements is not a new phenomenon. During WWI, the everyday was mobilised in order to help prisoners of war and is described as the great humanitarian awakening. In the 19th century, philanthropic organisations mobilised especially bourgeois females in order to help, but also to educate and improve the working class. We invite papers exploring 'the vernaculars' of everyday mobilisation in past and present. We will in particular be looking for papers with perspectives of culture history on everyday mobilisations and/or papers who aim to discuss current events in light of previous examples of social and religious activism, movements, citizens risings or the like.