Alice in Space: The vibrant intellectual world of Lewis Carroll – 25 Feb 2017

Alice in Space

The vibrant intellectual world of Lewis Carroll

Gillian Beer and Zoe Jaques

Sat. 25 Feb. 2017, 2.00-5.00 pm. £45.00

Stapleford Granary, Cambridge, CB22 5BP

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Opportunities for review writers for ‘Women: A Cultural Review’

Women: A Cultural Review

Dr Trudi Tate, the reviews editor of  is interested in hearing from PhD students who may be able to write occasional reviews for the journal.

Please contact her directly at

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Call for Papers – Crossing Borders: Negotiation, Provocation, and Transgression Deadline 7 Feb 2017

Birkbeck Institute for Social Research

in collaboration with

Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities

Call for Papers – Crossing Borders: Negotiation, Provocation, and Transgression

Birkbeck Institute Graduate Conference, Birkbeck, University of London, 5-6th May 2017

Supported by the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities and the Birkbeck Institute for Social Research

Call for papers deadline: 7 February 2017

Across the globe, borders are once again being erected, entrenched, and enlarged in order to contain, as well as to subject to the perpetual surveillance apparatus, people considered threats to the integrity of the national and supra-national state. From Calais to Lesbos, the camp has returned with a vengeance in Europe, supported by dubious claims for security. The spectre of the Jihadist and economic migrant haunts the political imaginary of the ‘advanced’ nations of Western Europe, who now spare no mercy for those displaced by civil war, environmental disaster, or material immiseration. Areas of conflict are increasingly being captured by drones, which, crucial for security, are profoundly redefining the borders between state, civil society, and privacy. Yet the very instantiation of the border speaks to and raises the possibility of its being breached, of forms of traversal, of lines of flight. This could be the contested borderland, a zone of indiscernibility where state violence regulates the movement of capital and labour, as in the case of the Mexico-US border and the region of Kashmir. It could also be the borderless world of ubiquitous data collection, which, paradoxically is recorded and stored in obscurely located and highly centralised data centres. Or, the faltering border between the conscious and the unconscious, whereby libidinal drives perpetually upset any stable sense of the sovereign self. Finally, ‘crossing borders’ poses a temporal question, directed to conceptions of historical change, the unpredictable instant of revolution which in shattering the known retroactively constitutes a border.

This conference is a call to intellectual arms, then, a provocation to think geographical, political, bodily, technological, and environment borders. What constitutes a border, how are they stabilised, and how can they be crossed, negotiated or transgressed? How are borders enacted, defined and re-defined by surveillance, technology, regulations and resistance? Are borders necessarily the logic of a colonial structure of thought, predicated on capture, division, and domination? How else might difference be thought and engaged? What is the discourse, language, imagery of the border? How are human bodies reciprocally shaped by the social environment? What model of the psyche can help us understand the rich diversity of socio-political mechanisms? How can we cross the border of rationality in order to explore and release the unconscious factors in our sense-making? And, crucially, how can we as academics cross institutional and disciplinary borders? We welcome submissions from all disciplines, and especially encourage contributions from artists and activists.

Suggested topics, but by no means exclusive to:

  • Approaching the Fortress State: Migrants, Asylum Seekers, and Refugees.
  • Borderlands, Hinterlands, No-Man’s Land: Contested Borders.
  • Settlements of the Border: Walls, Camps, Gates, and Occupation.
  • Media Ecologies: Governance, Surveillance, and Hacking in the Anthropocene.
  • Geographies of Data: Drones, Data Centres, and The Digital Commons.
  • Borders and the Case of Psychoanalysis.
  • Psychosocial Methodologies.
  • Climate Change.
  • Transnational and Transcultural Aesthetic Forms.
  • Fictions of Passage.
  • Theorists of Flight, Movement, and Non-Transcendent Crossings.
  • Caste, Class, Gender, Race, Sexual Transgressions.
  • Borders of Time: Revolution, Reaction, Restoration.

Proposals are invited for twenty minute papers and panels of three papers. Abstract (300 words) should be submitted to by 7 February 2017.

Please also include a short bio (no more than 150 words), contact details, and institutional affiliation. Accepted proposals will be notified by 28 February 2017.


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CFP: Satellite deadline 28 February 2017

Satellite – the School of Arts group/subcommittee focused on technology-enhanced learning, broadly defined – is pleased to announce a Call for Proposals for exploratory events to take place this Summer Term 2016-17.

These exploratory events are an opportunity to explore more subject-, disciplinary- or problem-specific developments, innovations and issues related to technology-enhanced learning, and more generally the implications of new technologies for pedagogy. You may, for instance, want to organise an event around alternative approaches to assessment that make use of techniques such as mobile video, social media or blogging. Or an event which considers innovative ways in-class learning experiences can be blended with online activities in-between sessions. Or the ways in which the digitalisation of our research objects or methods might shift how we teach and assess our subject areas. These examples are not exhaustive, and there are many other possibilities.

Exploratory events can be proposed by School academics, teaching and scholarship staff, administrative staff, as well as postgraduate research students.

Proposals are due by 5pm on 28 February 2017 and must include the following:

  • Event Title
  • Event Convenor(s) (name and short bio / link to web profile)
  • Event Description (no more than 500 words)
  • Requested funding amount and its purpose(s) (e.g. catering costs – please specify if Satellite funding will be complemented by other funds, e.g. from department or research centre)

Please submit your proposal to Scott Rodgers at Feel free to get in touch with Scott should you have any questions, or if you would like to discuss a potential idea further.

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History and Theory of Photography Research Centre Spring 2017 Events

History and Theory of Photography Research Centre Spring 2017

Free and open to all, at 43 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD

Thursday 19 January 2017, 6:00-7:30pm

Room 120, 43 Gordon Square

Margaret Iversen

Profane Illuminations


Robert Rauschenberg, Rebus, 1955.

Walter Benjamin credited the Surrealist movement with ‘a true, creative overcoming of religious illumination’ by replacing it with a kind of ‘profane illumination’. This talk attends to two key moments in the art of producing technically mediated, profane illuminations. They are, first, the innovations of the Surrealist movement itself and, second, Leo Steinberg’s ‘Other Criteria’ with its conception of the picture plane as a receptive surface or, as he put it, ‘a consciousness immersed in the brain of the city’.


Thursday 2 February 2017, 6:00-7:30pm

Room B04, 43 Gordon Square

Marcia Pointon (Professor Emeritus, University of Manchester, and Research Fellow, Courtauld Institute of Art)

Robert Harris’s Photography at De Beer’s Kimberley Diamond Mine 1875-1890


Thursday 27 April 2017, 6:00-7:30

Room 106, 43 Gordon Square

Christina Riggs (University of East Anglia)

Photographing Tutankhamun: Photo-objects and the archival afterlives of colonial archaeology

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Free cinema screening: That Guy Dick Miller – Sat 14 January 2017 1pm

That Guy Dick Miller, directed by Elijah Drenner, 2014 (1hr  31min)

Sat 14 January 2017, 13:00-15:00

Birkbeck Cinema, 43 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD

Marking the end of the exhibition A Museum of the Everyday: Cinephilia and Collecting at Peltz Gallery, That Guy Dick Miller celebrates a journeyman of the Hollywood bit part. Anyone who has kept up with Hollywood films over the past forty years would recognise Dick Miller but probably wouldn’t be able to put a name to the face.  Having worked with directors such as Roger Corman, Steven Spielberg, and James Cameron, regularly appearing in the films of Joe Dante (The Howling, Gremlins), and sharing the screen with the likes of Robert De Niro, Jack Nicholson and Jada Pinkett Smith, he is the epitome of the ‘It’s that guy!’ supporting actor.

Looking at Hollywood through the prism of Dick’s career echos the collections displayed in the exhibition, particularly Vic Kinson’s Stars Archive, which records every single actor Kinson ever saw in a film. Both take the time to mark the careers of actors who may be forgotten or, in Dick’s case, recognised but not necessarily known. That Guy Dick Miller demonstrates that every film exists in the context of another film, connected through the actors in them and audiences who watch them.

A Museum of the Everyday: Cinephilia and Collecting is on at Peltz Gallery until 25 January 2017.

To book your FREE ticket go to

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New issue of 19: The Arts and Feeling

19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century, 23 (2016)

The Arts and Feeling – Issue 23

This issue of 19 on ‘The Arts and Feeling’ explores the ways in which Victorian writers, artists, composers, sculptors, and architects imagined, conceptualized, and represented emotion. Its diverse articles respond to and extend recent interdisciplinary work on emotions, sentimentality, and the senses, locating such work within wider debates about the physiology and psychology of aesthetic perception, the historicization of aesthetic response, and the role of media specificity in the production of affect. What were the expressive codes and conventions that resonated for the Victorians? And what of the terminology used today in academic discourse to locate, recognize, and describe feeling? ‘The Arts and Feeling’ interrogates such questions in relation to canonical artworks, like John Everett Millais’s Autumn Leaves or William Holman Hunt’s The Awakening Conscience. It investigates the role of feeling in religious visual and material culture, and in John Ruskin’s vision of architecture as an emotional art; it looks at Victorian exhibition culture and the ‘hurried’ nature of aesthetic response, and at women viewing art and the gendering of perception. Vernon Lee offers us ‘historic emotion’, while George Eliot’s The Mill of the Floss makes us think about feeling hungry. Richard Dadd’s Passions series stages interaction between madness, visual culture, and theatricality; and the Aesthetic Movement provides opportunity to reflect on the relationship between art and music and how, together, they both produce and repress emotion.

Victoria Mills

Introduction: Curating Feeling

Kate Flint

Feeling, Affect, Melancholy, Loss: Millais’s Autumn Leaves and the Siege of Sebastopol

Kate Nichols

Diana or Christ?: Seeing and Feeling Doubt in Late-Victorian Visual Culture

Sophie Ratcliffe

The Trouble with Feeling Now: Thomas Woolner, Robert Browning, and the Touching Case of Constance and Arthur

Lesa Scholl

‘For the cake was so pretty’: Tactile Interventions in Taste; or, Having One’s Cake and Eating It in The Mill on the Floss

Tim Barringer

Art, Music, and the Emotions in the Aesthetic Movement

Karen Lisa Burns

The Awakening Conscience: Christian Sentiment, Salvation, and Spectatorship in Mid-Victorian Britain

Karen Stock

Richard Dadd’s Passions and the Treatment of Insanity

Katherine Wheeler

‘They cannot choose but look’: Ruskin and Emotional Architecture

Sarah Barnette

Vernon Lee’s Composition of ‘The Virgin of the Seven Daggers’: Historic Emotion and the Aesthetic Life

Meaghan Clarke

On Tempera and Temperament: Women, Art, and Feeling at the Fin de Siècle

To download the articles, see: 19 – The Arts and Feeling

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CFP: Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs – Deadline 27 January 2017

Call for proposals

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs

Friday 3 & Saturday 4 March 2017

Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre,

Haranczak/Navarre Performance Projects & Camden People’s Theatre

**Deadline: Friday 27 January 2017**

This is an open call for proposals from academics, artists, students and writers, for the symposium Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs.

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs focuses on the dynamics of working in pairs across disciplines and contexts.  It marks the conclusion of a long-term series of duet performances entitled The Difference Between Home and Poem, undertaken by Karen Christopher, Artistic Director of Haranczak/Navarre Performance Projects.

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs takes Haranczak/Navarre’s duet series as a starting point, to investigate how practitioners in a range of settings work in pairs.  In the field of collaborative performance making, a duet offers the most direct form of collaboration.  If even one member leaves, the duo or dyad dissolves.  However, live performance is only one area that offers the duet form.  The proposed symposium examines a range of working relationships to think about how the pair functions as a working collaborative unit, and why it is so often chosen.

Contributions are invited from people who work in pairs and from those who study the dynamics of such working relationships.  While the symposium departs from the world of arts research and practice, we seek input from researchers across the arts, humanities and social sciences, and from those working in arts, science, healthcare, athletics and construction contexts.  Examples for exploration might include athletes (including visually impaired athletes with guides), double acts (comedy, magic, circus acts), duos (dance, music, theatrical performance, visual art, photography, cinema, writing, arts management), surgeons, construction teams, climbers, or humans paired with animals.

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs is a forum for sharing ideas on the theme of working in pairs, and an opportunity to develop new work.

Call for proposals

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs invites proposals for 20 minute presentations in either of the following formats:

  • academic papers;
  • practice-based or performative presentations.

Additionally, we invite proposals for 20 minute extracts from performance works on this theme that are in development.  Two performance proposals will be selected.  A fee of £100 per performance is on offer to non-affiliated artists.

Questions for exploration include (but are not limited to):

  • what are the differences and similarities in working in pairs between different contexts?
  • what rituals and practices attend working in pairs?
  • what is the role of structure, system, pattern, repetition, intuition and spontaneity in such work?
  • how does working in pairs compare to other modes of collaborative practice?

Deadline for proposals

Please submit 300-word proposals and 50-word bios to by **Friday 27 January 2017**.

Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs is a collaboration between Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre, Haranczak/Navarre Performance Projects and Camden People’s Theatre.

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CFP: Theatres of Contagion: Infectious Performance Deadline – 20 January 2017

Call for proposals

Theatres of Contagion: Infectious Performance

Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre, 11-12 May 2017

At least since Thebes was beset by plague, western theatre has incubated a fascination with its own contagious power. This has extended beyond investigating medical and psychological conditions on stage, to both exploring and protecting against performance’s capacity to transmit ideas, illnesses, feelings and behaviours. This two-day Wellcome funded symposium puts the relationship between theatre and contagion under the microscope, to assess it from a range of humanities, medical, psychological and scientific perspectives, and by looking to diverse forms including drama, theatre, live art, dance, musical and cultural performance.

Our central questions include:

  1. How have theatre and performance represented, examined or been implicated in the transmission and circulation of medical and psychological conditions?
  2. How has our understanding of these relationships and phenomena changed over time, across cultures, including via developments in interdisciplinary practice and inquiry?

Keynote speakers:

  • Bridget Escolme (Queen Mary University of London)
  • Kirsten Shepherd-Barr (University of Oxford)

With performances by Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre Fellows:

  • Dickie Beau
  • David Slater and Entelechy Arts

20 minute academic papers or performative presentations might address:

  • How theatre has represented contagious medical conditions: plague and its metaphors in Sophocles and Shakespeare; venereal disease in Ibsen; measles in Shaw; infections and neurological conditions in Beckett; HIV/AIDS in Kushner
  • How theatre has represented contagious psychological conditions: versions of melancholia or depression in Chekhov; hysteria in Miller; madness in Churchill; paranoia and anxiety in Letts
  • The ways in which theatre has been affected by public health epidemics (e.g. plague, sweating sickness, cholera, influenza, HIV/AIDS, ebola), and reacted (e.g. through banning assemblies, withdrawing funding) or been strategically deployed (e.g. to inform and educate)
  • Contagious group emotion and behaviour: yawning, coughing, crying, laughing, violence
  • Scientific, medical, historical and theoretical accounts of how ideas, illnesses, feelings and behaviours spread in theatre and performance
  • The relationship between contagion and affect theory
  • How performance site, architecture, technology and design are implicated in questions and processes of transmission
  • The relationship between immersive practices and histories and theories of contagious performance
  • Performance in digital cultural, and analogies of viral dramaturgies or effects
  • Health, safety and law

Abstracts of 300 words and a short bio (less than 100 words) should be sent to by Friday 20 January 2017.

The symposium can also offer 4 x £50 bursaries to graduate students to help with attending from outside London. Please outline your situation briefly (less than 100 words) if applying one of these. The conference is free, although booking and registration will be required to attend once the schedule has been formalised and announced.

Funded by Wellcome (ISSF) with support from BiGS (Birkbeck Gender and Sexuality) and Birkbeck Institute for Social Research.

Enquires to Fintan Walsh

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