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MLAC EVENTS BULLETIN: 20th-26th November

Monday 20th November

 

IAS Fellow’s Seminar – Music and Violence

13:00-14:00, IAS Seminar Room, Palace Green, Professor William Thompson (Macquarie University, Australia)

Music with themes of extreme violence is growing in popularity, attracting millions of listeners worldwide. Cannibal Corpse became the all-time top selling death metal band in the United States with albums such as Kill (2006) and songs such as Meat Hook Sodomy, Necropedophile, and Hacksaw Decapitation. Extensive exposure to violent media, including video games with violent and anti-social content, is associated with aggression, substance abuse, various forms of bigotry, and suicide.

On the other hand, there could be benefits of listening to violent music. Some individuals use violent music to cope with difficult feelings, and some music therapists claim to have helped users derive important benefits from engaging with violent music. Whether such benefits outweigh the dysfunctional and bigoted attitudes that are reinforced by this music remains unclear.

In this seminar, Professor Thompson will review some of his recent research on the conscious and unconscious effects of listening to violent music, with the goal of stimulating discussions of the following questions: Should we be concerned about the extreme levels of violence represented in genres such as Death Metal and Rap, or is such violence a form of “gothic theatre” that is harmless? How should we interpret the growing empirical evidence that exposure to violent music reinforces aggressive, suicidal, misogynistic, and homophobic attitudes? Finally, in that censorship is a distasteful response to concerns about media violence, what strategies might be used to address the negative social consequences of violence in music and other media?

Places are limited at these lunchtime seminars and so any academic colleagues interested in attending, should contact the Institute in advance to reserve a place.

Contact enquiries.ias@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

IAS Fellow’s Public Lecture – Capitalism, class inequity, and education justice in the Nordic countries: The myth of the Nordic model

17:30-18:30, Josephine Butler College, Professor Dennis Beach (University of Gothenburg)

Based on a series of recent meta-ethnographic publications this presentation will address the concept of the Nordic educational model and claims from and about it concerning issues of education justice, class parity and equity. It will develop arguments about these systems as being far from just and equitous historically, and as worsening in these respects following a turn toward market politics in recent decades. Three main conclusions from the research will be discussed.

The first is that the political turn to market politics has added to inequalities and created possibilities for private actors and companies to profit from poverty and problems of inclusion rather than, as argued by the purveyors of the market alternative, providing welfare solutions for them. The argument here is that the market based approaches to education supply did not cause inequality and exclusion in the Nordic countries; or as far as we know elsewhere either for that matter. They rather exploited existing mediatised inequalities as a way to (a) help motivate reduced expenditure on state owned public services and (b) promote private alternatives from. In this sense the mediators of market politics should be understood as preying on and profiting from existing inequities, which they also subsequently then helped to make worse.

The second conclusion is different. It derives from the ethnographically described fact that despite betrayal by the governments that are meant to represent their best interests and safeguard their future, young people in education have shown involvement, commitment, effort, creativity and a massive learning potential that can be seized on by curriculum developers and political and institutional educational leaders.

The third conclusion is that this is not always happening and that it provides a problem of significant proportions that offers an important future challenge for education organisations and their leaders, politicians, curriculum developers and of course researchers as well.

This lecture is free and open to all.

 

MEMSA Seminar – Shining Light on the Past: Analysing Pigments in Medieval Manuscripts

17:40, World Heritage Site Visitor Centre, Louise Garner

Contact imrs.memsa@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Tuesday 21st November

 

IAS Molecules and Models Public Lecture: The structure, the body, the archive: DNA and history

18:00-19:30, Kenworthy Hall, St Mary’s College, Dr Jerome Groot (University of Manchester)

This Plenary Lecture is linked to the Molecules and Models: Seeing Structures workshops.

Jerome de Groot teaches at the University of Manchester. He is interested in popular history and the various ways that the past is accessed. He is the author of Consuming History (2008/ 2016) and Remaking History (2015).

How does knowledge of DNA change the way we think about the past? How does investigation of ancient DNA from archaeological sites shift our understanding of what it is to be ‘human’? How might our awareness of our genetic make-up change our sense of ourselves?

To address these questions this talk looks at various manifestations of DNA in historical investigation and thinks about how this relates to genealogy, humanness, public history, and the contemporary historical imagination. In particular Dr Groot investigates how the duality of DNA in the historical imagination – material yet unseen evidence that lives within us – allows a dynamic connection with the past. How does the material ‘model’ of DNA impact upon the imagined ‘thing’? To do this, he will think about what Jackie Pearson and others have termed the ‘genetic imaginary’. That is, popular understanding of the work of our DNA and, more particularly, how we might understand, represent, and visualise it. In particular Dr Groot is interested in how genetic science interacts with historical awareness. Therefore this talk investigates the intersection of genetics and popular narratives of the self and the past. How is this science represented and understood? How, particularly, is it visualised? What kinds of models are conceived of and circulated?

Many scholars have written about the new identity politics raised by genetic science. It is important to see these new identities within temporality. DNA brings genetics into a particularly historicised knowability. What was remote is now intimate; what was once ‘science’ is now ‘life’. Our genetic make up allows an enormous historical perspective to open up. The interplay between the imagined and the modelled and the mathematical is immensely rich and complicated. How is DNA conceptualised and rendered? How is it imagined as both past and current, veering between something reified as ancient and at the same time something almost excessively modern? The ‘narrative’ that is constructed depends on a diversity of analysis, probability, and modelling. The results are presented in a variety of formats and interpreted. The evidence is clear – it is us – but it is also unreadable and unknowable. The question of our individual relation to ‘humanness’ is provoked by DNA investigation. How does kinship, race, ethnicity, identity, function here? How does this change our understanding of ourselves in time?

Contact cvac@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Conference – IAS Molecules and Models – Seeing Structures

21st-22nd November, Day 1, 14:00-19h30, Kenworthy Hall, St Mary’s College, Professor Ludmilla Jordanova and other contributors

Organised by the Centre for Visual Arts and Culture (CVAC) as part of the Institute of Advanced Study Theme for 2017-18 Structure

Molecular models participate in attempts to understand the structure of matter; they are one of the most recognizable of scientific artifacts, featuring, for example, in Maggie Hambling’s celebrated portrait of Dorothy Hodgkin and in the much-reproduced photograph of Watson and Crick beside a model of DNA. There is now an extensive scholarly literature on models in general and on specific ones, such as DNA. The meeting will consider the specifically visual properties and impact of molecular models, for example, in advertising and popular culture.

Questions to be addressed include:

What roles have molecular models played in scientific practice?

How do they help us understand the nature of that practice?

What roles do they play in non-specialist representations of science?

How do they illuminate the theme of ‘structure’?

Might studies of molecular models and representations of them help us understand ‘visual thinking’?

For the full programme, click here.

Contact cvac@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Ushaw Lecture: The Survival, Alteration and Appreciation of English Medieval Embroideries

17:30-19:15, Ushaw College, Dr Glyn Davies (Musieum of London)

The international reputation of English embroideries was such that following the Reformation, although there was enormous loss and destruction, the conditions were there for a significant number of embroidered vestments to survive. The stories of how such embroideries have come down to us in the present day is often as fascinating as their medieval histories, and involves piety, profiteering, academic curiosity, and even international scandal. This lecture explores some of those stories, with special reference to a number of embroideries included in the 2016 exhibition Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery, which was held at the V&A.

This lecture is organised by the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies and the Centre for Catholic Studies (both at Durham University) as part of the Ushaw Lecture Series.

The lecture will start at 6pm and will be preceded by a drinks reception at 5.30pm. Transport between Durham City and Ushaw is available. The event is free of charge and all are welcome; registration is essential.

Contact ccs.admin@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Walpole, Burney, and the Tragedy of Incest

18:15-1915, ER141

Tercentenary Lectures: Horace Walpole and His Legacies
Find out how Horace Walpole’s ‘truly dreadful’ drama inspired the work of the later writer, Frances Burney, at this free public lecture in our Walpole and His Legacies series. Join the conversation via #WalpoleLegacies.

When Frances Burney spotted Walpole’s Mysterious Mother among the Queen’s books in November 1786, she was delighted to be allowed to borrow it: ‘I had long desired to read it, from so well knowing, & so much liking the Author’ (The Court Journals and Letters of Frances Burney, Vol. 1: 1786). Having read it aloud, with a group of fellow courtiers, she professed herself disgusted, however: ‘Dreadful was the whole! truly dreadful! a story of so much horror, from attrocious and voluntary guilt, never did I hear!’ (CJL, 270). Yet despite her protestations, incest casts its shadow over Burney’s own works, and is key in the plot of her own first tragedy, Edwy and Elgiva. This lecture will explore Walpole’s and Burney’s differing approaches to this recurrent theme in eighteenth-century drama, suggesting its importance for the period’s shifting understanding of the purpose and impact of tragedy as a genre.

Contact stina.maynard@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Wednesday 22nd November

 

Conference – IAS Molecules and Models – Seeing Structures

21st-22nd November, Day 2, 09:15-13:00, Kenworthy Hall, St Mary’s College, Professor Ludmilla Jordanova and other contributors

Organised by the Centre for Visual Arts and Culture (CVAC) as part of the Institute of Advanced Study Theme for 2017-18 Structure

Molecular models participate in attempts to understand the structure of matter; they are one of the most recognizable of scientific artifacts, featuring, for example, in Maggie Hambling’s celebrated portrait of Dorothy Hodgkin and in the much-reproduced photograph of Watson and Crick beside a model of DNA. There is now an extensive scholarly literature on models in general and on specific ones, such as DNA. The meeting will consider the specifically visual properties and impact of molecular models, for example, in advertising and popular culture.

Questions to be addressed include:

What roles have molecular models played in scientific practice?

How do they help us understand the nature of that practice?

What roles do they play in non-specialist representations of science?

How do they illuminate the theme of ‘structure’?

Might studies of molecular models and representations of them help us understand ‘visual thinking’?

For the full programme, click here.

Contact cvac@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Work in Progress Seminar: Dr Penelope Johnson and Dr Marcela Cazzoli – Trajectories of Language

12:00-13:00, ER153

Penelope Johnson: Language and Pilgrimage in the Middle Ages

Marcela Cazzoli: When the Vulnerable Language Acquires Prestige Abroad: Immigrant Welsh in Argentina

Contact penelope.johnson@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Lunchtime Concert: College Music

13:15-13:45, Concert Room, Music Department

The lunchtime concert this week features musicians from Hatfield College. Music will be provided by Will Harrison, Hannah Thompson, and the Hatfield Flute Choir.

The Lunchtime Concert Series provide an excellent opportunity for soloists and college music groups to perform. The concert runs from 1.15-1.45 and is free of charge.

Contact abigail.groocock@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

History Research Seminar – Rumour, ‘fake news’ and the uses of history: Britain, 1500-2000

16:00, Kenworthy Hall, St Mary’s College, Professor Jo Fox (Durham) and Dr David Coast (Bath Spa)

Paper to start at 4.00 (tea and coffee from 3.30)

They will be followed by wine and nibbles

ALL WELCOME

Contact history.reception@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

The Curious World of Hieronymus Bosch

17:45-20:00, ER201

Film screening
This film is from the ‘Exhibition on Screen’ series of documentaries from Seventh Art Productions. These focus on the work of individual artists based on major exhibitions of their work.

The artist Hieronymus Bosch (c. 1450 – 1516) has been hailed as the greatest master of fantasy who ever lived. In 2016, the largest ever retrospective of Bosch’s works was held in his home town of Den Bosch, bringing together 35 of his 44 surviving works. It was so popular that opening hours had to be extended to 1 a.m. to meet the demand. This film of the exhibition, with expert insights from curators and leading art experts, will allow viewers to appreciate the detail of Bosch’s extraordinary paintings as never before, offering closeup views of the curiosities hidden within his brimming canvases, from cannibalistic clergymen to three-headed birds.

This event has been organised by the local committee of the Art Fund, the national charity which raises funds for museums and galleries. All proceeds will be given to the Art Fund.

Contact johnfindlay11@gmail.com for more information about this event.

Visit the website to book online

 

War Poets

19:00-20:00, ER 141, Ushaw College, Professor Stephen Regan

At this poignant time of the year, Professor Stephen Regan and his friends read extracts from some of the most moving poetry ever written. Light supper included in the price.

Tickets cost £7 and can be purchased here.

Contact s.r.regan@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

The Future of the University Public Lecture Series – The University and the Role of Distance Learning – Tackling Sector Diversity

20:00-21:00, Great Hall, University College, Peter Horrocks CBE (Open University)

When picturing a University student, the first thing that comes to mind is an 18 year old, moving from full time secondary to full time higher education and often leaving home for the first time. But what about those students who don’t fit this picture; those studying part time, or remotely, or both? What about students whose age, caring responsibilities, health, or work commitments mean the “standard” HE experience just isn’t on the cards? These people form a sizeable yet endangered minority, particularly in England where the part time market has declined by 61% since 2009 . But their voices matter, and they’re getting louder.

In a post-Brexit society where the skills gap is acknowledged as a critical issue for the economy and where jobs as we know them are being increasingly threatened by AI, learning while working suddenly feels like much more than a buzz-phrase. And to make it happen; recognising, celebrating and supporting diversity in our HE sector is more important than ever.

In his remarks Peter Horrocks will explore the technical, social and political factors behind the need for greater diversity in the sector – and the innovation required to support it in the years ahead.

This lecture is free and open to all, and is on a first come, first served basis. The series will be held in the Great Hall at University College (Durham Castle). Doors will open at 7.45pm.For further information contact the IAS (enquiries.ias@durham.ac.uk).

 

Thursday 23rd November

 

Creative Writing Symposium: First Circle of Lectures

16:15-17:45, ER153

Presentations and Q&A on short stories, novels and drama

Dr. Allyson Stack (University of Edinburgh): “The art of the tale: Why short stories matter”
Dr. Catherine Dousteyssier-Khoze (Durham University): “Writing you first novel: joys and pitfalls”
Dr. Patrick Gray (Durham University): “Literature vs Propaganda: ambiguity and the catharsis of doubt”
Q&A + snack

 

Structuring Knowledges: Building the late antique Church: new perspectives of institutional analysis – Seminar

16:15-17:30, Seminar Room 2, History Department, David Natal Villazala (Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna)

This seminar is one in a series entitled “Restructuring Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages (AD c.300 – c.800)”, a research programme organised jointly between the Departments of History, Archaeology and Classics, supported by the Institute of Advanced Study. Students as well as staff are welcome, but places are limited. In conjunction with these seminars, the speakers will offer a series of workshops for postgraduates.

For more information and to register, contact Helen Foxhall Forbes (h.g.foxhallforbes@durham.ac.uk)

 

Saturday 25th November

 

Petitioning Parliament and People Power in Modern Britain Talk

14:00-16:00, Learning Education Centre, Palace Green Library

Join us for a free, short talk at 2pm, revealing the rise, fall, and resurgence of Britain’s petitioning tradition, or drop-in any time from 2-4pm to meet the team behind the research project and see some of the treasures of Palace Green Library’s Special Collections relating to popular politics and people’s pressure on Parliament. It is not necessary to book and light refreshments will be served throughout the afternoon.

Before the vote, there was the petition- the most popular and accessible form of political activity for the majority of the nineteenth century. Now a new project funded by the Leverhulme Trust is rediscovering the vast range of petitions sent to Parliament: from voting rights for working men and women and the abolition of slavery, to the keeping of the Sabbath and the prohibition of alcohol.

Join us for a free, short talk at 2pm, revealing the rise, fall, and resurgence of Britain’s petitioning tradition, or drop-in any time from 2-4pm to meet the team behind the research project and see some of the treasures of Palace Green Library’s Special Collections relating to popular politics and people’s pressure on Parliament. It is not necessary to book and light refreshments will be served throughout the afternoon.

This event is supported by the ESRC Impact Acceleration Account and Durham University. It is free and open to all.

Contact history.reception@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Being Human: a festival of humanities – Lost voices from the North-East

15:30-16:30, Concert Hall, Palace Green

Durham University is running two events as part of the Being Human, National Festival of Humanities, this November. The Festival takes place in the middle two weeks of November across the UK, involving hundreds of events showcasing humanities research in all its variety and richness.

The two events, supported by the Festival, Durham University’s Faculty of Arts and Humanities, the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, and the Institute of Advanced Study, take place on the 19th and 25th November. The IAS took a leading role in the early establishment of the Festival which is run from the School of Advanced Study in London.

For the full Festival programme see: https://beinghumanfestival.org

Lost voices from the North-East

Listen in to echoes from the past, when All Hallows’ Eve struck fear in people’s souls!

‘Lost voices’ retrieves and presents voices, melodies, and popular traditions in the North-East, from Anglo-Saxon to Victorian times. The show includes songs which inspired Stevie Smith, Walter Scott, and Dylan Thomas, haunting soul dirges, fire-and-brimstone preaching by Puritans, dances for the dead, worm ballads, and silent creatures of the night. With Hector Sequera, Barbara Ravelhofer, musicians, singers, a dragon, and a wild horse. Want to know more about music, theatre and performance traditions in Durham and beyond?

No booking required.

See: https://beinghumanfestival.org/event/lost-voices-from-the-north-east/ for further details and venue.

Contact Barbara.ravelhofer@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

Undisciplined photographs: interdisciplinary knowledge in the nineteenth century

17:00-19:15, Elizabeth Edwards (University of Leicester)

‘Undisciplined photographs: interdisciplinary knowledge in the nineteenth century’

This paper explores the flow of photographs across and within nineteenth century knowledge spaces. Drawing on examples from archaeology, painting and ethnography, it examines, in particular, the ways in which commercial producers of photographs intentionally positioned their images at the intersections of disciplinary markets. I shall argue more broadly that there is a paradox between the recodability of photographs and their ability to perform in interdisciplinary contexts while simultaneously being active as epistemic images within formation of disciplines themselves.

 

Free public event: guest lecture, panel and reception 

17.00 keynote / guest lecture

17.45-18.30 roundtable discussion

18.30-19.15 drinks reception

Please note there are only 30 spaces available so registration is on a first come first served basis.

Register at: https://www.dur.ac.uk/cncs/conferences/viarts/

Contact g.e.m.gasper@durham.ac.uk. for more information about this event.

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