Conference Date: February 13-15, 2006
Location: Humanities Research Centre, ANU, Canberra, Australia
The conference web address is provided below.
This conference solicits new work in the field of testimony studies that reflects trans-national and cross-cultural concerns relating to the production, reception and performance of personal and collective testimonies arising from historically specific injustice throughout the 20th century. We are interested in testimonies produced in the context of, for example, World War I and II, the USSR, the Holocaust and forced migrations, genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, and Bosnia, war rape, and resulting projects of prosecution (eg. International Criminal Tribunals) and national confrontation (eg. South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the Bringing Them Home Inquiry in Australia), and in the sites (eg. legal, digital, artistic, textual) of testimony production. The conveners seek papers that attend to the local conditions of the production and reception of testimony, as well as papers that explore the wider national and trans-national circuits of their distribution and consumption.
CALL FOR PROPOSALS:
We seek 250 word proposals for 25-minute papers that address the following issues. Papers on other topics will also be considered.
What social, political, historical and material conditions have given rise to new forms of life-writing and testimony production?
How does narrative dissonance in the production of video-testimony, for example, complicate the idea of 'authorship' and subjectivity?
What challenges does testimony pose to historical interpretation of traumatic events?
What role do factors such as gender, race and ethnicity play in the production and reception of testimony, and in the shaping of cultural memory?
What strategies do new forms of testimony and life-writing use to negotiate issues of power, subjectivity and address?
What are the ethical demands posed by listening, writing, and reading testimonies as ‘text’?
How do various methodological approaches result in different ‘readings’ of testimony as text?
To what extent do testimonies ‘undo’ national histories and myths? To what extent do they create new myths?
Does the framing of testimony invite or encourage some kinds of readings at the expense of other kinds of readings?
What role does aesthetic or textual form play in shaping how audiences respond to testimonies of trauma?
In addition to panels on specific topics, we anticipate organising a roundtable on approaches to reading testimonies. We invite proposals for 8-10 page papers that demonstrate, through a textual analysis of a testimony, a particular methodological approach.
Proposals of 250 words should be emailed to both conference conveners at the address below by March 18th, 2005.
Rosanne Kennedy, School of Humanities, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, 0200
Tel: +61-2-6125-5090; Fax: +61-2-6125-4490
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