Histcon.se Time, Memory and Representation Tid, Minne, Representation

A Multidisciplinary Program on Transformations in Historical Consciousness

Ett mångdisciplinärt forskningsprogram om historiemedvetandets förvandlingar


Call for Papers: “Aesthetics and Ethics of Memory”

Published on 4 February, 2012

Mnemonics Graduate Seminar, Aarhus University, Septermber 20-22, 2012.Deadline for submission of proposals: April 15, 2012.

For the inaugural seminar of Mnemonics: Network for Memory Studies, a newly established international collaborative initiative for graduate education in memory studies, we invite paper proposals from graduate students on the relations between the aesthetics and ethics of memory.

Aesthetics and ethics often intersect in relation to the representation of collective memories, especially those of disturbing events or experiences. While decorum is naturally called for in addressing a traumatic past, it can also be argued, from an ethical standpoint, that traumatic memories must be represented in a compelling and unforgettable manner. Representational strategies thus have to find a balance between being ineffectual and irrelevant and being potentially offensive and provoking.

At the seminar a number of questions following from the main theme will be discussed:

  • What are the limits of representation?
  • How do certain forms and practices challenge these limits?
  • How is this reflected in memory politics?
  • Do the limits differ from medium to medium, e.g. from a public monument to a film or a text?
  • Are there practices connected to memory that highlight relations between aesthetics and ethics?

We welcome case studies that reflect on the relation between memory and form, and papers that investigate how different media and cultural artifacts approach these aesthetic and ethical questions.

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Sharon Macdonald, Professor of Social Anthropology, School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester. Professor Macdonald is the author of Difficult Heritage: Negotiating the Nazi Past in Nuremberg and Beyond (Routledge, 2009).

Ann Rigney, Professor of Comparative Literature, Utrecht University. Professor Rigney is the author of The Afterlives of Walter Scott: Memory on the Move (Oxford UP, 2012).

Practical Information

Where: Aarhus University, Denmark

When: 20-22 September 2012

Fee: 250 euros, payable upon acceptance of paper

What’s included: Attendance, accommodation in tourist-class hotel in the centre of Aarhus, all meals

What’s not included: Travel

Send: A 300-word abstract of your paper, a description of your graduate research project (one paragraph), and a short CV (max. one page) to memory@au.dk

Deadline for submission of proposals: 15 April 2012

Notification of acceptance: 1 May 2012

Number of places: 24, of which 18 are reserved for the partner institutions

Aarhus is easily accessible from both Billund (BLL) and Aarhus (AAR) airports.

Learn more about Aarhus University at http://www.au.dk/en/.

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