CFP: New Historical Perspectives on Ageing and the Life Course, Leeds

Date: 19th – 20th March 2018

Location: Weetwood Hall, University of Leeds

Deadline: 30th November 2017

In recent decades, global research activity around ageing and the life course has grown exponentially. Work in the clinical sciences, and in the established field of gerontology, has explored the challenges and opportunities of ageing through investigations focusing on biological and biosocial elements. More recently, scholars in the humanities and the social sciences working in the field of ageing studies have been turning their attentions to the topic, offering interdisciplinary cultural and social analyses that are theoretically, politically, and empirically engaged. Within this category, a number of scholars across academic disciplines including history of medicine, philosophy, film studies, literature, law, sociology, psychology, and anthropology – and in the cross-disciplinary field of medical humanities – are united by a shared interest in historical perspectives on youth, ageing, and old age.

This two-day conference will bring together scholars whose work engages with the past, to share new perspectives on the role and value of historical approaches to ageing across disciplines in the humanities and the social sciences. Several key questions will frame the event:

  • What can historical research on ageing and the life-course in the humanities and social sciences offer that is distinctive from modes of enquiry in these areas in the clinical sciences?
  • To consider ageing in historical contexts is to encounter issues of disciplinary boundaries and hierarchies, dominant histories, and canonicity. What is the specific nature of these challenges, and how might they be navigated?
  • Is it enough to reconstruct historical, socio-cultural contexts of ageing? Or should historical projects also develop innovative approaches that will address present-day issues?
  • How might scholars in the humanities and social sciences whose work includes historical approaches work together across disciplinary boundaries?
  • Who are the audiences for historical research in ageing? How might we communicate effectively with the academic sciences, with non-academic audiences, and with policy-makers and public-health organisations?
  • What are the broader implications of this kind of work for developing further knowledge and understanding of the role of historical approaches to the study of human health, disability, disease, minds, and bodies?

We invite contributions in the form of 20-minute papers from scholars at any career stage, and from any discipline in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, broadly construed. Proposals from doctoral and early-career researchers are particularly welcomed. To submit a proposal, email an abstract of 250-300 words, together with a brief biographical note of no more than 150 words to Dr Catherine Oakley (C.M.C.Oakley@leeds.ac.uk), by 30th November 2017.

Papers might engage with the questions outlined above from a particular disciplinary perspective. Further topics could include, but are not restricted to:

  • Senescence and old age
  • Rejuvenation and anti-ageing
  • Childhood, adolescence, and youth
  • Ageing and scientific technologies
  • Families and intergenerational relationships
  • Age and demographic change
  • Ageing in visual and material cultures
  • Ageing, gender, sex and sexuality
  • Work, retirement, and pensions
  • Ethics of ageing
  • Age, ageing, and youthfulness in popular culture
  • Global perspectives on age and ageing

Confirmed keynote speakers include Dr Hyung Wook Park (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore) whose recent book Old Age, New Science posits a close relationship between the emergence of gerontology and changing social perspectives of ageing in the first half of the twentieth century.

The conference is being organised as part of the Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project “Endless Possibilities of Rejuvenation: Defying Ageing, Defining Youth in Britain, 1919-1948”, led by Dr James Stark at the University of Leeds.

CFP: BodyWorks: A Conference on Corporeal Representation, Northumbria

Date: 3rd May 2018

Location: Northumbria University

Deadline: 20th January 2018

BodyWorks takes an interdisciplinary and intersectional approach to representations of bodies, embodiment and sensory experience across literature and culture. In doing so, we welcome responses from a range of disciplines, including cultural studies, literary studies, philosophy, arts, history, education, media, social sciences and medical humanities. Through this breadth of intellectual inquiry, the event aims to draw together a range of approaches and methodologies for exploring various facets of the contemporary shift towards studies of the body and emotions in the humanities.

Papers may choose to respond to recent scholarship in affect studies, new materialisms, posthumanism, grotesque theory, feminist theory or queer theory. We invite new perspectives on modes of depicting bodies and emotions, and on representations of physical difference. Broader still, we welcome papers which consider how the somatic and affective turn may influence our understanding of subjectivity, politics, ethics and aesthetics.

Possible topics include but are not limited to:

  • Depictions of bodies across space and time
  • Embodied emotions and theories of affect
  • Negotiating gender through the body
  • Sexuality and the body
  • Bodies and issues of subjectivity, selfhood, privacy and publicity
  • Bodies and the impact of class, race and ethnicity
  • Representations of sensory experience
  • Bodies and issues of religion, politics and ethics
  • Bodies as narrative devices
  • Non-human, inanimate and posthuman bodies

We welcome Masters, PhD and post-doctoral students. To participate, please submit an email to the conference conveners containing an abstract of between 200-300 words and a biography no longer than 150 words.

The deadline for submission is 20th January 2018, and we will inform participants around the end of February.

The conference will take place 3rd May 2018, Northumbria University. We are very pleased to announce that our keynote speaker will be Professor Lisa Blackman from Goldsmiths University, London. Professor Blackman’s work intersects body studies with media and cultural theory. She has written extensively on subjectivity, affect, the body and embodiment, including her most recent monograph Immaterial Bodies: Affect, Embodiment, Mediation (2012).

Please direct any queries you may have to Jenny Hunter.

Workshop: ‘Narrative Medicine’, Mainz, Germany

Date: 12th-14th January 2018

Location: Mainz, Germany

Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany, will host a three-day workshop (January 12-14, 2018) on “Narrative Medicine” with faculty from the Program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. The workshop is based on Rita Charon’s concept of Narrative Medicine. Alternating between plenary lectures and small-group seminars, the faculty will engage participants with close reading, writing and interviewing exercises.

This intensive weekend workshop offers rigorous skill-building in narrative competence. Participants will learn effective techniques for attentive listening, adopting others’ perspectives, accurate representation and reflective reasoning. Small group seminars offer first-hand experience in close-reading, reflective writing, and autobiographical exercises. Participants will receive a packet of readings prior to the weekend that will include seminar articles in the field of narrative medicine by leading educators. The target audience is health care professionals and scholars interested in narrative medicine.

The preliminary programme and schedule can be found here. For more information and registration, visit the homepage of Mainz University.

Arts of Breath – series of lecture-performances organised by Life of Breath project, Durham

The Life of Breath Project is pleased to announce ‘Arts of Breath’, a series of lecture-performances exploring the role of breath in poetry, fiction, singing, dance and visual art. All events will take place in Durham. For more information see individual event pages below, or contact Sarah McLusky.

All events are free and everyone is welcome. Most are 6.15pm in ER142, Elvet Riverside, New Elvet, Durham (except *)

The programme launches on Wed 15 November with Prof David Fuller examining Charles Olson’s breath-related theories of poetic structure and how these ideas were taken up by other poets, including William Carlos Williams. To celebrate the launch, this first event will be followed by a drinks reception, which all attendees are welcome to attend.

The featured image is a detail from ‘The Birth of Venus’ by Sandro Botticelli 

Glasgow History of Medicine Seminars, RCPSG

The Centre for the History of Medicine (part of the Institute of Health and Wellbeing at Glasgow University) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow invite you to a series of free seminars on medical history.

Venue: Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, Library Reading Room, 232-242 St Vincent St, Glasgow, G2 5RJ

Time: Coffee and biscuits from 5pm. Talks begin at 5:30pm

Booking: email library@rcpsg.ac.uk or call 0141 221 6072. This event is free but please contact us to book as places are limited.

Tuesday 10th October

Dr Steven Craig (University of Glasgow), ‘”Enquire into all the Circumstances of the Patient Narrowly”: John Rutherford’s Clinical Lectures, Edinburgh, 1749-1753’

Tuesday 7th November

Professor Tilli Tansey (Queen Mary University of London), ‘Witnessing Recent Medical History’

Tuesday 5th December

Professor Sam Cohn (FRSE, University of Glasgow), ‘Epidemics: Hate and Compassion from the Plague of Athens to AIDS: Towards a Conclusion’

Lecture: Wendy Kline, ‘Making the Invisible Visible: The Unexpected Entanglements of Psychiatry, Midwifery, and Psychedelics’, Glasgow

Location: University of Strathclyde, Stenhouse Wing, Room 105

Date: 5-6.30pm, Tuesday 10th October 2017

The Centre of the Social History of Health and Healthcare (CSHHH) invites you to their annual lecture, by Wendy Kline (Purdue University), on ‘Making the Invisible Visible: The Unexpected Entanglements of Psychiatry, Midwifery, and Psychedelics’. All are welcome, but please reserve a place by emailing caroline.marley@strath.ac.uk as soon as possible.

Abstract

On November 13, 1956, recently certified Czech psychiatrist Stan Grof swallowed 150 micrograms of LSD as one of the earliest Czech volunteers for a research study. Within a few hours, his entire conception about the human psyche and the role of psychoanalysis was turned upside down. He described being hit by a radiance comparable to a “nuclear explosion” which catapulted him out of his body, expanding his consciousness to “cosmic dimensions.”

The timing was fortuitous, for Grof was in the midst of an existential crisis. Like many psychiatrists in Europe and the U.S. in the 1950s, he was inspired by Freudian analysis. Psychoanalysis was brilliant in theory, he believed, but abysmal in practice. It lacked visible proof of efficacy, a reminder of the profession’s struggle for legitimacy. Over the next fifteen years, Grof set out to provide that proof. He established himself as the world’s foremost researcher of psychedelics, conducting over 2000 psychedelic sessions first at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Institute and then at the Esalen Institute in CA.

In this talk, I draw on the records of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center LSD Training Program Study and the papers of Grof to explore the “unexpected entanglements” between psychiatry, midwifery, and psychedelics.

Grof observed “astounding parallels” between psychedelic experiences and the clinical stages of delivery, believing that the common denominator between the two was the trauma of birth. He proposed a “new cartography of the human psyche” grounded in this observation, calling it the Basic Perinatal Matrices (BPM.) Despite the fact that Psychologist Abraham Maslow declared Grof’s framework “the most important contribution to personality theory in several decades,” its influence has been largely ignored by medical historians.

Biography

Wendy Kline is professor and Dema G. Seelye Chair in the History of Medicine in the Department of History at Purdue University. She is the author of several articles and three books (one forthcoming) that focus on controversies surrounding women’s reproductive health. She received her Ph.D. in history from the University of California, Davis, in 1998.

Her first book, Building a Better Race: Gender, Sexuality, and Eugenics from the Turn of the Century to the Baby Boom (University of California Press, 2001), emphasizes the American eugenic movement’s interaction with popular notions of gender and morality during the first half of the twentieth century. Her second book, Bodies of Knowledge: Sexuality, Reproduction, and Women’s Health in the Second Wave (University of Chicago Press, 2010) reveals the ways in which women challenged, expanded, and reinvented constructions of the female body and particular reproductive health in the late twentieth century. Her current book project, under contract with Oxford University Press, is entitled Coming Home: Medicine, Midwives, and the Transformation of Birth in Late-Twentieth-Century America. Based on interviews and archival records of midwives, doctors, and health organizations, this book will be the first in-depth, historical analysis of the home birth movement in the U.S.

CFP: ‘Medical and Metaphorical Wounds from the Middle Ages to the First World War’, London

Workshop: ‘Medical and Metaphorical Wounds from the Middle Ages to the First World War’

Location: Science Museum, London

Date: 26-27th January 2018

Wounds and their meaning have differed over time: from stigmata to the psychological wounding of soldiers in the First World War, the conception and function of wounds as religious symbols, medical signs or metaphorical devices has depended on social and historical contexts. Over this two-day workshop we hope to further a discussion on the varied understandings of wounds and wounding across history by bringing museum professionals and academics from different periods and disciplines together.

This workshop will mark the closing of ‘Wounded: Conflict, Casualties and Care’ at the Science Museum, on wound care and surgical developments in the First World War. The format will be a series of panels, discussions and (guided) exclusive access to the Science Museums extensive medical collections not currently on display. There will be a guided tour of the Wounded exhibition as well as a guided tour of Blythe House, one of the Science Museum object stores where large parts of the Wellcome Medical History Collection permanent loan to the Science Museum is housed. The proceedings from this workshop are to be published in a Special Issue of the Science Museum Group Journal. Registration is free and lunch will be provided on both days. We will endeavor to cover travel costs for student and unwaged delegates. There will be a conference dinner at delegates own expense.

We welcome abstracts on topics related to wounds and wounding from any period from the Middle Ages to the First World War. Topics may include but are not limited to:

  • Developments in wound care (surgical innovation during war, academic, scholastic, or
    educational changes)
  • Conception of wounds and wounding in medical text and literature
  • Descriptions and representations of wounds in medical text and literature
  • Physical and mental wounds
  • Representations of wounds and wounding in images and literature
  • Wounds as metaphor or simile
  • Wounds in religious practice, theory and representation
  • Wounds to the body politic and social wounds
  • The use of wounds and wounding in political or ideological discourse

Deadline for submission of abstracts is 31st of October, 2017. Please submit a short abstract (max 300 words) and a short biography (max 150 words) to sara.stradal@sciencemuseum.ac.uk.

Any questions and queries, please do not hesitate to contact: sara.stradal@sciencemuseum.ac.uk.

CFP: ‘The Senses and Spaces of Death, Dying and Remembering: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives’, Leeds

Date: 27th – 28th March 2018

Bringing together artists, academics and professionals working in a range of services relating to end of life, this conference will consider how space plays a role in practices of remembrance in the past and present, and in different cultures across the world. Through talks, performances and opportunities for discussion, we’ll think about being in a particular place might help us remember those we have lost, what emotions spaces bring about, and how we engage with places to keep their memories alive.

The conference will take place in Leeds, UK, 27-28 March 2018.

To submit a proposal, please email an abstract of c.250 words and a short biographical statement of c.100 words to Jessica Hammett by 30th November 2017.

For further details about this conference, please go to the conference website.

CFP: Trauma Studies in the Medical Humanities, Durham

Date: 12th – 14th April 2018

This interdisciplinary conference is envisioned as a forum for reflection on the current state of research on trauma within the medical humanities and on potentially fruitful directions for future exploration. It is organised by the Music Department and Centre for Medical Humanities at Durham University, with the financial support of the Wellcome Trust. Confirmed keynote speakers are Professor Mikhail Epstein (Emory University), Professor Marina Frolova-Walker (University of Cambridge) and Dr Ursula Wirtz (International School of Analytical Psychology, Zurich).

The last three decades have seen a steady growth of interest in the subject of trauma not only within psychiatry and psychotherapy, but also across the humanities. The study of trauma has become increasingly interdisciplinary, ranging from historians’ analyses of the long-term social effects of mass trauma on civilian populations to studies of the links between trauma and artistic creativity, and mental health practitioners’ investigations of music, literature, dance, and other arts as adjuncts to the treatment of trauma.

Proposals are invited for panels and individual paper proposals relating to the following themes:

  • The contribution of the humanities to deepening our understanding of trauma
  • Therapeutic applications of humanities research on trauma
  • The arts and the treatment of trauma
  • Narratives of trauma
  • Artistic representations of the traumatised state and post-traumatic subjectivity
  • Artists’ engagement with trauma occasioned by war, genocide, social and political upheaval, catastrophic events
  • Traumatic memory and confronting the traumatic past
  • The humanities and the study of collective, cultural, and transgenerational trauma
  • Methodological approaches to the study of trauma within the humanities
  • Trauma and contemporary culture
  • Trauma, spirituality, and the quest for meaning

The organisers are especially keen to elicit proposals pertaining to new and emergent areas of interest. The conference will feature a special session on the study of trauma within musicology. Other areas of interest include representations of traumatic experience in literature and the visual arts of earlier historical periods and in the artistic traditions of non-Western cultures.

Proposals for individual papers of 20 minutes’ duration should be submitted in the form of a 250-word abstract accompanied by a 100-word professional résumé, contact information, and details of professional affiliation. Proposals for panel sessions should include a 300-word statement explaining the panel’s rationale as well as abstracts of each paper. The organisers welcome proposals from postgraduate researchers and independent researchers.

The working language of the conference will be English, but requests to present in another language will be considered at the discretion of the conference committee. If the paper is accepted, the speaker will be required to provide a high-quality English translation.

A limited number of bursaries will be available to assist graduate students and presenters without access to institutional support. If you wish to be considered for a bursary, you should indicate this in your covering letter when submitting your abstract. Please be aware that we are unlikely to be in a position to cover participants’ costs in full.

Conference delegates will have the option of staying in reasonably priced accommodation in the university’s colleges.

Proposals should be submitted by e-mail to Dr Patrick Zuk by Monday 13th November 2017. Notifications of acceptance will be sent by Monday 4 December 2017.

Registration open: Cultures of Shame in Medicine, Dublin

Workshop date: 19th September 2017

“Cultures of Shame in Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Workshop” is the third workshop organized by the Wellcome Trust Seed Funded ‘Shame and Medicine Project’.

The aim of this Workshop is to bring together a number of academics working from various disciplinary perspectives within Humanities (e.g. English, History, Visual Culture) in order to reflect on how shame dynamics permeate medical culture and practice.

The workshop will consist of five talks covering diverse topics such as mesothelioma, HIV, surgeon experience and patient narratives. The Workshop takes place on Tuesday 19th September 2017, from 9am – 2pm, in the Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin. Full details of the programme can be found on the project’s website.

All are welcome to attend and registration can be completed through the Workshop’s Eventbrite page.

For any further information, do not hesitate to contact the event’s organizers Dr Barry Lyons or Dr Luna Dolezal.

This workshop is sponsored by the Wellcome Trust, the Trinity Long Room Hub and the University of Exeter.