Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Two Conferences on Death, Art and Culture: Calls for Papers

I have just been alerted to two fabulous looking death and culture conferences both of which are now soliciting papers! Full info for each follows. Apply away!

1) Art and  Death: A Series of Three Workshops
1 November 2012, 21 February and 23 May 2013

The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 0RN

Call for Papers
Submission by 20 September 2012 for workshop 1 (1 November 2012): Anticipation and Preparation
A series of three workshops will be held at the Courtauld Institute of Art in 2012-2013 to explore the inter-relationship between art and death. These workshops have arisen from an informal group of doctoral students with shared interests in funerary monuments. The workshops will be structured to recognize that the certainty of death is accompanied by the foreknowledge and uncertainty of what may come after, and that visual representations of these phases have varied over time and between countries. The first workshop will focus on the images and objects related to the impact that the certainty of death has on individuals and the community; the second on art in the context of dying, death and burial; and the final one on representations of the perceived fate of body and soul after death, as well as the continuation of a relationship (if only in memory) between the living and the dead.

Subjects for the workshops could include, but are not limited to:

Workshop 1 (1 November 2012): Anticipation and Preparation
•    Death insurance? Religious gifts and foundations
•    Protective objects and amulets
•    Tombs commissioned during a lifetime, testamentary desire and fulfilment
•    Contemplating images of death, warnings to the living
•    The cult of the macabre, images of illness and decay
•    Apocalyptic visions

Workshop 2: (21 February 2013): Death and Dying
•    A ‘good death’
•    War and violence
•    Funerals/Professional mourners
•    Funerary monuments, memorial architecture, cemetery design
•    Post-mortem portraits
•    Images of the corpse in painting, sculpture, film, photography, etc
•    Crucifixion imagery
•    Death in museum collections

Workshop 3 (23 May 2013) Life after Death
•    Images of the soul /resurrected or re-incarnated body
•    Depictions of the afterlife
•    The incorruptible body, saints, relics and reliquaries
•    Remembering the dead, commemoration in art and/or performance
•    The ‘immortality’ of the artist, post-mortem reputations

Format and Logistics:
•    Length of paper: 20 minutes
•    Four papers per workshop
•    Location: Research Forum, The Courtauld Institute of Art
•    Timing: 10am-midday
•    Expenses: funds are not available to cover participants’ expenses

We welcome proposals relating to all periods, media and regions (including non-European) and see this as an opportunity for doctoral and early post-doctoral students to share their research.

Please send proposals of no more than 250 words to: Jessica.Barker[at]courtauld.ac.uk and Ann.Adams[at]courtauld.ac.uk by the following dates:

•    20 September 2012 for workshop 1 (1 November 2012): Anticipation and Preparation
•    10 January 2013 for workshop 2 (21 February 2013): Death and Dying
•    11 April 2013 for workshop 3 (23 May 2013): Life after Death

For planning purposes, it would be helpful to have an indication of interest in the later workshops, in advance of submission of a proposal.

Organised by Jessica Barker and Ann Adams (The Courtauld Institute of Art)

2) Graduate Student Conference: “Death: the Cultural Meaning of the End of Life”
January 24–25, 2013
LUCAS (Leiden University Centre for Arts in Society)

This conference aims to explore how death has been represented and conceptualized, from classical antiquity to the modern age, and the extent to which our perceptions and understandings of death have changed (or remained the same) over time. The wide scope of this theme reflects the historical range of LUCAS’s (previously called LUICD) three research programs (Classics and Classical Civilization, Medieval and Early Modern Studies and Modern and Contemporary Studies), as well as the intercontinental and interdisciplinary focus of many of the institute’s research projects.

The LUCAS Graduate Conference welcomes papers from all disciplines within the humanities. The topic of your proposal may address the concept of death from a cultural, historical, classical, artistic, literary, cinematic, political, economic, or social viewpoint.

Questions that might be raised include: How have different cultures imagined the end of life? What is the role of art (literature, or cinema) in cultural conceptions of death? How might historical or contemporary conceptualizations of death be related to the construction of our subjectivity and cultural identity? What is the cultural meaning(s) of death? To what extent has modern warfare changed our perceptions of death? How is death presented in the media and how has this changed? In what ways has religion influenced our reflections on death and the afterlife?

Please send your proposal (max. 300 words) to present a 20-minute paper to lucasconference2013[at]gmail.com.

The deadline for submissions is November 15, 2012.
For further information on the first workshop, click here. For further information on the second conference, click here. Special thanks to Lisa Kereszi for turning me onto the latter!

Image: Dead Toreador (Torero Mort). Édouard Manet (French, Paris 1832–1883 Paris)

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