Past Conferences

2016-17 Conferences

Conference programme
Priestcraft: Early Modern Variations on the Theme of Sacerdotal Imposture
01 September 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This two-day conference will bring together an international group of experts in intellectual history, the history of religion and literary studies. It will represent the first attempt undertaken by scholars to view ‘priestcraft’ from a pan-European perspective.

Reproductive politics in France and Britain
05 September 2016, GR06/07 Seminar Room, Faculty of English, 9 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DP

This two-day conference brings together historians, demographers and other social scientists from France and Britain working in the field of reproductive politics. 

Sessions will identify similarities and differences between political, religious and medical contexts on both sides of the channel as well as leading actors and their networks. Presentations and discussions will explore how various aspects of reproduction are privately experienced, publicly debated, legally regulated and scientifically and medically managed.

Digital Publics and Counterpublics in Africa
09 September 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

The Digital Publics and Counterpublics Workshop, jointly hosted by the Centre of Governance and Human Rights, and CRASSH, will critically explore the ways that new digital technologies are progressively being incorporated in everyday practices in east Africa and the socio-political impacts this has had.

Traps: technological mediations of human-animal encounter
27 September 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge

This conference seeks to foster an experimental cross-disciplinary conversation about the ways traps and allied technologies serve as the medium for humans’ conceptual and practical engagement with other species.

Diagrammatic: Beyond Inscription?
02 December 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge

This conference aims to explore the interdisciplinary, shared traits of diagrammatic thinking so as to go beyond the notion of simplification, of “drawing information together”, which forms the usual analytical ground for understanding syntactic visualizations in the sciences and humanities. Rather than seeing diagrams as systems of linkages, the aim of the conference is to explore the dialectic of inscription and erasure as an inherent and generative trait of diagrammatic practices.

Global Muslim Encounters: Homogenisation and Diversity across Time and Space
09 December 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge

Bringing together historians, art historians, anthropologists, political scientists, and scholars of comparative literature and Islamic studies who work on Islamic communities all across the globe, our aim is to analyse how Muslim travellers, scholars, state officials and migrant workers made sense of radically different forms of practical piety and religious thought they encountered while being on the move. This two-day interdisciplinary conference aims to compare and connect such encounters as they occurred in various spatial and temporal settings since ca. 1250.

New Directions in the Evolutionary Social Sciences
13 December 2016, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

Within the evolutionary social sciences – however mature – there is room for exploration, for new methods, and new approaches. This conference gathers together researchers working at the cutting-edge of the field, and will open dialogues on the as-of-yet unanswered issues at the heart of social science and cultural evolution. 

After the Soviet Collapse
12 January 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

Focusing on music and the other arts, this conference seeks to bring together some of the unique stories of transformation from the vastly different regions that made up the Soviet Union, but also to draw out emerging patterns and common trends. 

After Idealism: Sound as Matter and Medium in the 19th Century
17 March 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference aims to enlarge substantially our understanding of the dialogue between 19th-century music and natural science, examining in particular how a scientific-materialist conception of sound was formed alongside a dominant culture of romantic idealism. It takes as its subject sound as matter and medium, focusing on the domains of natural science, emergent technologies, sentient communication and acoustics.

Biodiversity and its Histories
24 March 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference will bring together scholars and researchers in ecology, politics, geography, anthropology, cultural history, and history and philosophy of science to explore how aesthetic, economic, and moral value came to be attached to the diversity of life on earth.

Biocircularities: Lives, Times and Technologies
31 March 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference will explore the diverse ways in which technoscientific innovations in epigenetics, bio-banking and regenerative medicine challenge and redefine traditional life course models.

Researching South-South Development Cooperation
03 April 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference is the first of its kind in its specific focus on the epistemological and related methodological challenges associated with researching South-South development cooperation. The conference will invite researchers on SSDC - from graduates and early career scholars to leading figures in the field - to reflect critically on the changing politics of knowledge and knowledge production that these actors and trends present.

Literary Littorals: Slavery, Emancipation, Africa and the Spanish Empire
06 April 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference aims to bring into dialogue scholars working in a variety of fields—Latin American Studies, Asian Studies, African Studies, Economic History, Historical Anthropology, Visual and Cultural Studies, Critical Race Theory, Gender Studies—in order to grapple with the discursive, visual, and material realities of slavery, the slave trade, and enslavement by other names and legal categories in the Spanish colonial sphere.

Legacies of Conquest: Transnational perspectives on the conquest and colonization of Latin America
11 April 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This symposium will provide the opportunity for a comparative inquiry into the ways in which key aspects of the conquest and colonisation of Latin America by Europeans have been represented and transmitted in writing, in visual culture, and in performance culture down the centuries and across a range of national cultures.

Labour Politics in an Age of Precarity
21 April 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

The workshop will discuss how labour is organized in different contexts across Africa, Latin America, North America, Asia and Europe, and what effects such organization has on labour relations under conditions of economic precarity.

Putting Dirt in Its Place: The Contemporary Politics of Waste
02 June 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference explores the socio-material interfaces where waste meets politics in the present. It brings together a group of established and emergent waste scholars from across the social sciences to discuss the contemporary dynamics of waste and waste labour in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas. Five themed panels - on infrastructure, labour, circulation, elimination and reconceptualization– provide a structure through which waste will be explored in all its complexity.

Reproducing the Environment
29 June 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This workshop will examine the questions that climate change and other environmental issues raise about the conditions of possibility for reproducing human and non-human lives in the present and future. There will be a public lecture by Dr Carrie Friese (London School of Economics).

Measuring Matters: Histories of Assessing Inequality
05 July 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

This conference will combine intensive closed workshops with two public events on the topic of the assessing inequality. The first public event will be a keynote address by a leading scholar in the field: Professor Alice O’Connor. The second will be a round-table aimed at engaging with current practice and policy, engaging with a wider academic and non-academic public, and bringing into the conference other perspectives, debates and questions.

Theology and Politics in the German Imagination, 1789–1848
10 July 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

A two-day international conference bringing together scholars of different disciplines to consider the relationships between theology, religious practice, political theory, and political practice in early nineteenth-century Germany (and German-speaking central Europe).

Shari’a in Motion: Islam, Law and Mobility
14 July 2017, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DT

Shari’a in Motion, a conference, aims to bring together a diverse group of scholars working on varied aspects of Islam, law and authority, for discussions on method, mobility and meaning in the study of shari’a. Taking the broadest possible approach to 'shari’a,' we seek to explore how seeing shari’a as always in motion - in time, in space, through text, language and the operations of meaning - allows new perspectives and methods to emerge for the study of Islam and Muslim societies. 

2015-16 Conferences

Conference programme
Moral Psychology Interdisciplinary Conference
09 October 2015, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

The Moral Psychology Interdisciplinary Conference aims to identify the most recent theoretical and methodological research challenges in morality research from various disciplines.

Leadership, Authority and Legitimation in South Asia
20 November 2015, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This workshop will include contributions on political, moral, and religious forms of leadership in the region and the global South Asian diaspora. Participants will consider what makes South Asia’s leaders acceptable or even intensely desirable in their followers’ eyes.  

Why We Disagree about Human Nature
10 December 2015, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

The speakers at this conference will put forward a selection of the very different answers to questions about human nature. Their responses are drawn from the perspectives of psychology, the philosophy of science, the philosophy of medicine, social and biological anthropology, evolutionary theory and the study of animal cognition. We will understand why we disagree about human nature, and what, if anything, might resolve that disagreement.

The Matter of Mimesis. Studies on mimesis and materials in nature, art and science
17 December 2015, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This interdisciplinary conference will bring together scholars from the sciences, social sciences and humanities in order to address material practices of mimesis.

Digital Editing Now
07 January 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This conference will be an occasion to exchange ideas about the state of digital editing and its future potential.

Death and the Afterlife
22 January 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This one-day symposium is centred around interdisciplinary responses to Professor Samuel Scheffler’s recent book Death and the Afterlife (Oxford, 2013).

The Museum as Method: Collections, Research, Universities
14 March 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This conference brings together scholars interested in material culture, and curators from across the arts and sciences, to reflect on both questions of methodology and public policy. 

Matthew Parker: Archbishop, Scholar, and Collector
17 March 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2) and Corpus Christi College

This conference aims to bring those with an interest in Parker together for the first time, to encourage work bridging existing fields of Parkerian study and setting aspects of his career into their full context, and, as a result, to present for the first time a new and coherent picture of a major figure in mid-sixteenth-century English (and Continental) intellectual and religious life, bringing into particular focus Parker's role in collaborative scholarship and the retrieval of the past.

The Criminal Law's Person
07 April 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This conference brings together representatives from criminal law, philosophy, and medical and social sciences to examine the idea of the responsible person in the criminal law.

Books in the Making
14 April 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This event will bring some of the key players in the book trade together with academics from a range of disciplines whose work approaches that circuit from different perspectives: literary and cultural studies, sociology, book history and digital humanities. 

ART / MONEY / CRISIS
29 April 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

The conference will bring together leading academics from across different disciplines in the humanities to address artistic responses to financial crisis from the beginning of the twentieth century to today, focusing particularly on the 2008 crisis.

Hierarchy, Egalitarianism & Responsibility
13 May 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

The world today faces a crisis of responsibility. This workshop explores the deep social roots of this crisis through a comparative investigation of different cultural orders of responsibility.

Anxiety in and about Africa
15 June 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

In recent years, a growing body of literature has explored the ways in which colonial encounters between Europeans and Africans were fraught with anxiety. This conference will engage scholars from history, development studies, anthropology, geography, sociology, law, and other disciplines in a new conversation on anxiety across time and space.

Malthus: Food, Land, People
20 June 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2) and Jesus College

This conference will bring together historians, economists, literary scholars, political theorists, geographers, demographers, and philosophers who will share their views on Malthus and Malthusianism in and for his own centuries, and for ours, a century defined by accelerating public debate on environment, population, and food security. 

China Goes Global: New Perspectives on Chinese Migration in China and Abroad
27 June 2016, St Catharine's College (McGrath Centre)

This conference will explore the widely discussed topic of historical and contemporary Chinese migration, both within China and abroad, but in less studied regions and from new perspectives.

Biopolitics and Psychosomatics: Participating Bodies
08 July 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

In this symposium we aim to unpack the multiple contemporary connotations of the term ‘psychosomatic’ and to render them available for discussion in relation to problems of agency, responsibility, motivation, choice and self-management.

2016's Race to Change the World
11 July 2016, SG1 and SG2, Alison Richard Building

This conference will focus on the 2016 U.S. presidential election and the implications that this will have for future U.S. foreign policy. Sessions will focus on the global challenges facing the next president, the role that a president can personally play in an international context, and the state of the 2016 campaign itself.

Women - Violence - 1968
14 July 2016, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

In 2018 the social movements leading up to and inspired by 1968 will be fifty years old. This conference will act as the foundation for a significant new volume on Women and 1968 to be published early during the 50th anniversary year, in order to help found a new discourse that emphasizes women’s broad and varied participation in and influence on the revolutionary politics of 1968 (where discourses to date have tended to focus exclusively upon the women’s movement and individual cases of “aberrant” violence).

2014-15 Conferences

Conference programme
Plague and the City: Disease, Epidemic Control and the Urban Environment
05 December 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT

This is the first annual conference of the ERC-funded project 'Visual Representations of the Third Plague Pandemic'. It will bring together social scientists, historians, historical geographers, urbanists and epidemiologists to discuss and disentangle the interrelation between bubonic plague (Yersinia pestis) and the urban environment in both historical and contemporary contexts.

The Politics of Framing and Staging: Performance as Paradigm II
08 December 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

Framing and staging have historically been powerful metaphors with which to negotiate collectivity. This conference looks at ways in which performance is less about objects than the power of frames.

Does the Museum Just Preserve the Museum?
12 December 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

Issues of security and conservation repeatedly draw public attention to the practical problems faced by curators. Questions of repatriation and human remains draw public attention to the ethical issues faced by curators. But the job of curator also raised fundamental intellectual questions that neither the academic not the lay public are led to think about. 

Grasping 'Everyday Justice': An Ethnographic Approach
06 February 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference aims to generate a cumulative account of the 'everyday nature of justice'. We invite theoretically grounded papers offering ethnographic insights into the plural nature of 'everyday justice' across the globe.

The Total Archive: Dreams of Universal Knowledge from the Encyclopaedia to Big Data
19 March 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

Questions of the total archive cannot be answered from within any one discipline: they engage key issues in the philosophy of classification, the poetics of the universal, the ideology of political high modernism and the technolotgies of information retrieval. 

The Places of Early Modern Criticism
23 March 2015, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference will bring together scholars working in departments of English, Modern Languages, Classics and Art History to look at the many different places of early modern criticism. 

Pursuing Justice in Africa
27 March 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The focus of the conference is on the many varied actors pursuing visions of justice in Africa - their aspirations, divergent practices and articulations of International and vernacular idioms of justice.

Print Media in the Colonial World
16 April 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The conference will bring together scholars in History, Literary Studies, Visual Studies, Anthropology and other associated disciplines working on newspapers and periodicals in societies across the colonial world in order to explore common themes and reflext on the place of the newspaper in colonial societies.   

African Heritage Challenges: Development and Sustainability
15 May 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The conference aims to explore the ways in which heritage can promote, secure or undermine sustainable development in Africa, and in turn, how this sustainable development affects conceptions of heritage in Africa.

The Drama of Intellectual Life: Performativity in the Study of Ideas
29 May 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference explores new perspectives for the study of intellectuals. It will investigate how new theoretical and methodological approaches can reinvigorate the study of intellectuals.

Objects in Motion: Material Culture in Transition
18 June 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

What happens when material objects transition between different contexts - geographical, cultural, and temporal? Diverse scholars, curators, and creative voices will meet to explore this theme, around the world and across the millennia.

Sonorous Sublimes: Music and Sound 1670–1850
23 June 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This interdisciplinary conference is the first dedicated to the musical sublime, c.1670–1850. Spanning the eras of Lully, Handel, Beethoven, and Wagner, this period witnessed dramatic changes in musical praxis alongside the rise to prominence of the philosophical and aesthetic category of the sublime.

Erotic Literature: Adaptation and Translation in Europe and Asia
29 June 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

Which aesthetic and cultural concepts inform the creative effort invested in its translation and adaptation? Drawing from various national and cultural traditions, film and literary scholars will come together to establish what divides and unites the erotic in diverse contexts. 

Sound Studies: Art, Experience, Politics
08 July 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The conference aims to facilitate dialogue between academics and artists/practitioners across the many disciplinary areas of sound studies.

Counting the Cost of Drink in Britain, 1830-1918
17 July 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The conference will explore attempts to assess the social, political and economic costs of alcohol consumption in Britain.

The Making of Measurement
23 July 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This interdisciplinary conference seeks to consolidate an emerging international community of scholars interested in the history and/or philosophy of measurement.

Sovereignty and Imperialism: Non-European Powers in the Age of Empire
10 September 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The conference addresses the ways in which six non-European powers - Abyssinia (Ethiopia), Afghanistan, China, Japan, the Ottoman Empire, Persia (Iran) and Siam (Thailand) - engaged with European imperialism and struggled to keep their sovereignty.

Sex, Disease and Fertility in History
28 September 2015, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference aims to further our understanding of the role of the venereal diseases in influencing the fertility of populations in the past.

2013-14 Conferences

Conference programme
Cinematic Urban Geographies
03 October 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference aims to explore the different facets by which cinema and the moving image contribute to our understanding of cities and its topographies.

Iraq: A Decade of New Governance
18 October 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

Weaving together salient themes from Politics and International Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, Economics, Law, Sociology, History, and Anthropology, and drawing in experts and practitioners from these fields, this conference will offer theoretical and empirical insights into contemporary Iraq.

This is my Body
18 November 2013, William Harvey Lecture Theatre, Addenbrooke's Clinical School

This two-day conference aims to return human experience to the centre of medical discussion by bringing scholars of the body from across the arts, humanities, and social sciences together with medical and surgical practitioners. 

Speaking Ethically Across Borders: Interdisciplinary Approaches
08 January 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The Speaking Ethically Across Borders project aims to address situations in which people recognize the existence of distinct ethical traditions and attempt to act or think ethically in light of those traditions, without collapsing the distinction between them.

Borderlands: Ethics, Ethnography and ‘Repugnant’ Christianity
09 January 2014, St John's Divinity School, St Johns St, Cambridge CB2 1TW
Institutions and their Discontents: Rethinking Economic Development in South Asia
17 March 2014, CRASSH (SG1&2)

The conference aims to bring together leading economists, political scientists and historians to debate a key tenet of modern development theory: the crucial link between the development of strong institutions and sustained economic growth.

Corruption in India: When Preaching Piety is Not Enough
17 March 2014, CRASSH (SG1&2)

Public lecture part of the conference "Institutions and their Discontents: Rethinking Economic Development in South Asia"

Creativity, Circulation and Copyright: Sonic and Visual Media in the Digital Age
28 March 2014, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

The primary aim is to further interdisciplinary discussion of the relationship between the aesthetics, ethics and legal implications of new digital technologies through exploring the various ways audio-visual media are created, received and interpreted.

Visual Anthropology and Contemporary South Asian History
04 April 2014, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

This conference will offer historians, anthropologists and postgraduate history students a unique opportunity to share and strengthen their scholarship within a cross-disciplinary research network concerned with the crucial relevance of applying theories of visual anthropology to the study of contemporary South Asian history.

Transforming Information: Record-keeping in the Early Modern World
09 April 2014, British Academy, 10-11 Carlton House Terrace, London
Purity & Impurity Across Anthropology, Psychology & Religious Studies: Contaminating Disciplines
20 May 2014, Jesus College (Upper Hall), Jesus Lane, Cambridge, CB5 8BL

The central approach of the conference is to promote cross-disciplinary scholarly exploration and conversation on purity, impurity, and disgust.

Making Scientific Capacity in Africa: An Interdisciplinary Conversation
13 June 2014, CRASSH (SG1&2), Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

The aim is to open the concept of scientific ‘capacity’ in Africa through a conversation between natural scientists and doctors, anthropologists and historians, providing, respectively, experiences and projects, ethnographic observation and historical investigation.

People and Plants: Material and Immaterial Transactions
26 June 2014, Scott Polar Institute, Lensfield Road CB2 1ER

This conference addresses issues related to the value socially conferred to plants as resources that are both material and immaterial.

Writing Itself
01 July 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The aim of this conference is to bring together people with a range of research interests and from a range of disciplines and subjects to reflect the way in which different sorts of enquiry relate to and orient themselves toward writing and written objects of different kinds.

'Bread, Freedom and Social Justice': Organised Workers and Mass Mobilizations in the Arab World, Europe and Latin America
10 July 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This international conference will provide the first opportunity for scholars, journalists and activists from Argentina, the UK, the US, Greece, Spain, Egypt, Tunisia and beyond to compare the challenges faced by the Latin American movements with the experience of mobilizations for similar demands in the Arab world and Europe since 2011.

The Sacred in a Global Age
04 September 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2

The aim of this two-day conference is to engage with selected manifestations of the sacred in the contemporary world. The focus will be on victimhood and sacrifice.

Visualising Posture in Dante's 'Comedy': History, Theory, Practice
12 September 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2

Posture is a key signifier of spiritual and psychological states in Dante’s Comedy. We aim to investigate the way in which these postures communicate by means of a range of interdisciplinary approaches.

Cold War Summitry: Transcending the Division of Europe, 1970-90
22 September 2014, History Faculty Board Room

The aim of this conference is to analyse the contribution of summitry to the peaceful ending of the Cold War, compared with other more structural factors such as military pressure, economic change and social transformations.

Partitionism, Minorities and Collective Identities in the Construction of a Europe of 'Small' Democracies, 1912-2012
25 September 2014, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, CB3 9DT - SG1&2

This conference addresses issues currently at the forefront of European politics and collective identities, namely the tendency of major states to fragment, a process which started at the beginning of the twentieth century and has acquired momentum in recent years.

2012-13 Conferences

Conference programme
Work Ethics: Rethinking Literary Labour in the Long Nineteenth Century
06 October 2012, Magdalene College, Cripps Court, 1-3 Chesterton Road, Cambridge, CB4 3AD
This symposium brings together researchers from across the humanities to address the enduringly troubled relationship between writing and ‘work’.
Philosophy and the Sciences – Old Visions, New Directions
30 November 2012, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The conference will explore changing conceptions of the relation between philosophy and the special sciences over the past century. We are interested in how, as philosophers of science in a European context, we got to where we are now; and in how we should be thinking about where we go next, in the evolving relationship between science and philosophy.
St Malo’s impetus for European Security and Defence: Much Ado about Nothing?!
07 December 2012, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
Comparing Ancient Worlds: Greece and China
24 January 2013,
Right across the spectrum of Greek and Chinese studies there is an increasing realisation of the benefits to be gained by adopting a comparative approach. Only by using such an approach can the distinctive features and commonalities between these two civilisations be identified.
Chains of Gold: rhetoric and performance in the verse anthem
01 March 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The conference will establish a four-way conversation between musicologists, historically-informed performers (including the professional viol consort Fretwork and singers from the many excellent College choirs that perform this repertoire regularly), literary scholars, and historians of the church, bringing together an entirely new group of people currently working on the same slice of English culture in the late 16th and early 17th centuries but from different perspectives. It will aim to explain why, as the Elizabethan composer Thomas Morley put it, the verse anthem was able "to draw the hearer, as it were, in chains of gold by the ears to the consideration of holy things".
The Location of Knowledge: A Mellon CDI Conference
08 March 2013, SG1, Alison Richard Building
A Mellon CDI Conference
Exploring modern South Asian history with visual research methods: theories and practices
15 March 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

This conference aims to investigate the ways in which visual research methods support the development of new perspectives on modern South Asian history.

Christianity in the second century: themes and developments
20 March 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
Our inter-disciplinary conference brings together Classicists, historians of ancient Judaism and of early Christianity in an attempt to take stock of this changing scholarly landscape, and with ancient Christianity as its principal focus, explore ways in which that movement both reflected, differed from and changed the cultural, social, religious and political background of the time.
Connecting the Dots: movement, space and the digital image
12 April 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The conference aims to investigate how we might understand and theorise space in relation to the digital image.
Post-democracies: interdisciplinary engagements after the democratic ideal
15 April 2013, Social Anthropology, Free School Lane, Cambridge CB3 9DT
In recent years, the promise of emancipatory democratic statehood has inspired uprisings, revolutions, and unilateral interventions into other nations' affairs. 'Democracy' appears to be a cherished value for the actors in such situations. Yet ethnographic research is making some intriguing discoveries in this regard. Growing numbers of former pro-democracy activists in emerging democracies such as Indonesia or Kenya have come to view the democratic ideal with suspicion or disdain, perceiving it to be inherently ineffective or morally flawed. In the established democracies of Europe and North America, apparent advocates of democratic principles now seem to be tacitly renouncing them in favour of technocratic managerialism, and ‘apathetic’ forms of citizenship. Why? Our conference aims to solve this puzzle.
Beyond the authority of the ‘text’: performance as paradigm, past and present
16 April 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
Performance as a paradigm repositions the intelligibility of works of art as a function of their mixed and multiple audiences: simultaneously implied and actual; individual and collective; past and present - audiences which precede, as well as follow, acts of creation. Performance as an angle of approach asks who an artwork is for, assuming a multiple and complex answer. It views all artworks as implicitly public forms of messaging, or rather, suggests a view of the work as time-specific gesture rather than object, however individually created or consumed. As Simon English said of his land art project ‘England’ on BBC Radio 4, ‘The artwork is us discussing it now.’
Latin American Utopian Visions: A Critical Look for the 21st Century
19 April 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

Latin America currently stands at a crossroads. The demise of neoliberalism as the hegemonic ideological force across much of the continent has led many inhabitants and observers of Latin America to publicly reopen fundamental questions as to the future and direction of the region and its nations. Democracy, citizen participation, participatory budgeting, human rights, resource nationalization, and pan-indigenous projects have all, at varying moments and in different ways, been invoked as fundamental principles for forging a new ideal future. At this critical juncture, a re-examination of the role of idealist visions in Latin America’s political programs and cultural production can reveal the multiple entanglements and implicit assumptions underlying these visions.

Remembering JB Trend: the quiet internationalist
22 April 2013, Clare College, Cambridge
This symposium celebrates the life and work of J B Trend, the first Professor of Spanish in Cambridge, and a central figure in the history of Hispanism.
Epidemic Crisis: The Dialectics of Event and Process
21 June 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

The conference seeks to bring anthropological, historical and public health perspectives on ‘event’ and ‘process’ as two aspects of infectious disease outbreaks in an interdisciplinary dialogue.

Applied Urban Modelling (AUM2013): Productive, liveable and sustainable city regions
26 June 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The aim of AUM2013 is to report and review new model applications in assessing policy options in an economically and financially uncertain world. We would like to focus on flexible and adaptable urban development that demands system-level thinking. The symposium welcomes all model types and styles, from conceptual experiments to practical policy appraisal. The scale of models may range from megalopolitan, metropolitan, city, urban district to neighbourhood. Because of its direct policy relevance, we welcome a broad academic, professional, policy-making and local community audience. We also aim to devote a third of the session slots to papers by young researchers and graduating PhD students – their papers will be placed in themed sessions along with those by leading scholars and practitioners.
Classifying Sex: Debating DSM-5
04 July 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
This conference brings together social scientists, gender scholars, sexologists, psychiatrists, historians of science, as well as mental health practitioners and sexual rights activists to critically explore the sexual classifications produced by the 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental Disorders (DSM), published in May 2013.
Knowledge, Exchange, Encounter: Europe and the Ottoman Empire, 1453-1718
08 July 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The aim of this conference is to further our understanding of the ways in which knowledge was exchanged between Europe and the Ottoman Empire during the period from the conquest of Constantinople to the Treaty of Passarowitz.
Infertility and Sacred Space: From Antiquity to the Early Modern
15 July 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
Relations between human reproduction, divinity and sacred space are at the centre of this interdisciplinary conference.
The Futures of Atlantic Intellectual History: Themes, Methods, Disciplines
19 July 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
The purpose of this conference is to explore the changing contours and future trajectory of intellectual history on both sides of the Atlantic.
Language Endangerment: Language Policy and Planning
26 July 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
Third Cambridge Conference on Language Endangerment
Making love, making gender, making babies in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s
06 September 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT
This conference will allow a comparison of the political and ethical debates over medical and cultural innovations in ‘sex’, ‘gender’ and ‘reproduction’ over the period 1950-1970.
Religion and Violence in Early Modern Naples
13 September 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2
This one-day workshop will explore the particular relationships between Naples, violence and religion in the early modern period and later historiography.
Ethics and Aesthetics of Epidemiological Photography
14 September 2013, CRASSH

This one day conference seeks to bring photographers with experience in covering infectious disease outbreaks together with medical historians, anthropologists and public health experts in order to engage in a dialogue regarding the past, present and future of epidemiological photography.

Extension and Embodiment in Cultural Evolution
19 September 2013, CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - S1

In this conference, our contributors look at the question of whether cognition itself occurs solely ‘in human brains’, or whether cognition should instead be properly thought of as occurring partly in embodied action, or partly in extra-bodily artefacts (Clark and Chalmers 1998).

Reimagining Modernism, Mapping the Contemporary: Critical Perspectives on Transnationality in Art
23 September 2013,

A major, two-day international conference reconceptualising modernist artistic practices from a transnational, interdisciplinary perspective.

2011-12 Conferences

Conference programme
Filming Transnational Interiors
27 September 2012, Arts Picturehouse Cinema and Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College, Cambridge
This conference seeks to explore the representation and conceptualization of interior space in cinema, in the context of the transnational relations and identities that inform both spaces and the films that project them. The conference will examine the idea that the intimate architectures of homes and dwelling places, whether of a transitory or more rooted nature, both shape and are shaped by the identities of those that inhabit them.