Time to Remember: Anniversaries, Celebration and Commemoration
Skepsi’s Tenth Annual Interdisciplinary Conference — Call for Papers
26th May 2017 — University of Kent, Canterbury
School of European Culture and Languages
We shall be celebrating Skepsi’s tenth anniversary with an interdisciplinary conference that has as its focus memory or more particularly the phenomenon of the anniversary with its dual attributes of celebration and commemoration, depending on the nature of the event which is being remembered. In either case, it sometimes seems that the manner in which the occasion is marked has become a ritual, an opportunity to contemplate how things have changed in the intervening years, how we travel and come to terms with and reflect on past events. At the same time, however, we also wonder why and for how long we need to remember.
Remembering past events and marking their anniversary is not a simple process: one person’s celebration is another’s commemoration, as the present division between Greek and Turkish Cypriots bear witness, arguably a legacy of violent historical events in the past visited on one side by the other. During attempts to resolve the problem, the need to mark such events in any way has been questioned; some suggest that a more effective way to re-join the divided communities would be for such memories to fade.
Why do we feel compelled to remember once a year events from the past, not only those from our own lives but those which we may never have personally experienced? What are we remembering? Does the act of remembering gradually metamorphose into a ritual the significance of which become hazy) These and other questions can be debated at our interdisciplinary conference. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to, the following and their interrelations:
- National and Personal Identities
- Voluntary Memory (conscious commemorating) and/or Involuntary Memory (the traumatic aspect of remembering) which links to the idea of (un)consciousness
- Individuality and Collectivity
- Gender and Identity/ History
- Time and Recollection (the need for remembrance/ effacement; the relation between time and space)
- Remembering and The Psychological Impact (trauma)
- Belonging and/or Unbelonging (affinity and/or estrangement to a place)
- Historical Commemoration (e.g. the Holocaust memorial)
- The Literary Representation of History
Papers should last for 20 minutes and will be followed by a 10-minute discussion. Abstracts of approx. 300 words should be sent as word documents to the conference organising committee at: firstname.lastname@example.org by 17th March 2017. The e-mail should also include the name of the author, institutional affiliation and brief autobiographical details. Please, also indicate any audio-visual requirements that you may have. The conference is organised by Skepsi, a peer reviewed postgraduate journal based in the School of European Culture and Languages at the University of Kent and funded by the University of Kent (http://blogs.kent.ac.uk/skepsi/).