Free download Ruth Leys in Histories of Emotions and the Senses series

Eminent historian of science Ruth Leys’ new book in the Elements in Histories of Emotions and the Senses series at Cambridge University Press, Newborn Imitation: The Stakes of a Controversy is free to download until 21 July.

The book touches on Silvan Tomkins, Paul Ekman, mirror neurons, and other key issues in the emotions field.

Call for Papers: Conflict and the Senses in the Global Cold War

International Workshop
“Conflict and the Senses in the Global Cold War: From Propaganda to Sensory Warfare”
Berlin Center for Cold War Studies at the Leibniz Institute for Contemporary History (IfZ)
in cooperation with Stiftung Luftbrückendank and Stiftung Ernst-Reuter-Archiv Berlin
15–16.10.2020 in Berlin

CfP Workshop Conflict and the Senses in Global Cold War BKKK 2020

Although a conflict in which military strategies and weapons of mass destruction were always on the “horizon of expectation”, the Cold War was to a large degree carried out by non-lethal methods. It was also a war of culture, politics, and (visual and sonic) propaganda. Therefore, it can be understood to a great extent as a war not only on the senses, but as a war through the senses. In recent times, sensory aspects of domestic and international conflicts have become a field of interest in both sensory studies and conflict studies, with their methods and questionnaires intertwining in fruitful cooperation. Historiographical approaches include the study of conflicts from the American Civil War to the Russian Revolution to both World Wars, and these examine how wars as the most extreme form of conflict were perceived—and how war changed contemporary perception. The central conflict of the second half of the 20th century, though, is still a blatantly unexplored area in terms of sensory approaches.

Steve Goodman has described how sound was used to carry out conflict—in propaganda, crowd control, and even in military practice and torture. Extending his term “sonic warfare” to “sensory warfare”, the workshop aims to discuss sensory aspects of the global Cold War—from sonic and visual propaganda to military forms of conflict in the “hot” wars of the Cold War in Korea or Vietnam.

What techniques were developed to attack the enemy with non-lethal and lethal weapons, ranging from irritation to the deadly use of chemicals aimed at the respiratory organs of the enemy? How were the senses trained to motivate the masses into a state of alert, for example, through sonic signals? What sensory methods were used to gain intelligence and information? What were the “micro politics” and affective measures used to influence people unconsciously, with the aim of dividing them into political communities of different perceptions, for example, in gustatory preferences? How did the Cold War not only use but also change perception as a result of division?

Papers may address (among other topics) aspects of:

– sonic and visual propaganda (e.g., at the borders of Germany, Korea, or Vietnam);
– cultural politics aimed at a Western/Eastern way of seeing, hearing, etc.;
– taste politics, as in “Americanized” vs. “Sovietized” and how this pertains to the global context concerning nutrition (e.g., airdrops of chocolate and chewing gum during the Berlin Airlift);
– spatial analysis of Cold War sense scapes;
– the “built view”, as in political architectures of transparency, centralism, or power;
– military measures aimed at perception organs (such as gas, and sonic and visual weapons);
– plans for “ecocide” or environmental weapons;
– sensory training and sensitization for both soldiers and civilians (altered states, e.g., by learning sonic signals);
– sensory methods of intelligence;
– the use of animal sensoria for warfare, border control and political policing;
– sensory warfare in domestic political conflicts of the Cold War (e.g., tear gas or olfactory forensics);
– sense aspects of human rights discourse, such as in detention and torture (e.g., pain, sensory deprivation);
– haptic aspects such as war toys or industrial design (from Sputnik to the red button);
– other everyday life aspects of the Cold War, such as how it affected music, gastronomy, perfumery;
– “new senses” like equilibrioception or pain control (e.g., in air force and other military training);
– transcontinental sensory aspects of the Cold War’s proxy wars (Africa, Asia, South America); or
– the Cold War and the senses in the museum.

By addressing these topics, the conference aims to apply perspectives from the internationally emerging field of sensory studies to Cold War history—and the other way around—with a clear focus on perception. We are seeking to gain general knowledge about how to apply sensory approaches to a concrete historical phenomenon and we seek to understand the sensory aspects of the Cold War in everyday life, as well as border areas of warfare in the 20th century.

Therefore, scholars from both sensory studies and history/conflict studies are encouraged to submit proposals. While understanding perception within its intersensorial dimensions, we do welcome both multisensorial resp. intersensory papers as well as such papers limited to a single sensory perception, especially to those senses that have been studied less.

Please tender submissions in the form of short and comprehensive proposals with an emphasis on the sensory aspect of your paper. The conference language is English and our intention is to subsequently publish the proceedings.

Each proposal should include:

– the author’s name and affiliation,
– email address,
– an abstract of no more than 350 words, and
– a short biography (no more than 150 words).

Please submit proposals to Dr. Bodo Mrozek: mrozek [at] ifz-muenchen.de by the deadline of 31 May 2020. The program will be announced by June 2020.

Call for Papers: Song Studies

The Amsterdam Centre for Cross-Disciplinary Emotion and Sensory Studies and THALIA, research group on the Interplay of Theatre, Literature & Media in Performance, present:

SONG STUDIES 2020

EXPLORING INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACHES TO SONGS AND PRACTICES OF SINGING (1200-TODAY)

Ghent University, 1-3 July 2020

Keynote speaker: Monique Scheer (Tübingen University)

Call for papers

The singing voice is a medium of expression that is found in all times and cultures. People have always been singing, not only to perform entertainingly, but also to express emotions or to embody identities. This has for example made collective singing (and listening) practices a primary way for people to articulate and embody the identities that are fundamental to the existence of social groups. The bodily and sensory experience of moving and sounding together in synchrony, enables individuals to experience feelings of togetherness with others.

Song is the versatile medium facilitating such processes. Songs can evoke and channel emotions, employing them for specific (or less specific) means. As a multimodal genre, song enables not only the articulation and embodiment of ideas; as an inherently oral and intangible medium, songs can move through space and time, transgressing any material form. Therefore, songs have proven an ideal tool for the distribution of news, contentious ideas, or mobilising messages.

This conference aims to bring together researchers from various disciplines investigating song (for example musicology, literary studies, history, sociology, performance studies, cognition studies, anthropology, etc.). The focus will be on the definition of possible approaches to the study of this medium (both in its material and performed existence), its performances (in any form) and reception (in any context). Research examples may cover songs written and sung in any culture and language, and any (historical) period. Common ground will be found through concepts, approaches and methodologies, encouraging an interdisciplinary and transhistorical dialogue, breaking ground for a new research field: song studies.

Possible research areas and questions to be explored are:
– how to study the multimodality of the genre, acknowledging both textual and musical characteristics, and its performative nature;
– the sensory/bodily and emotional/affective experience of listening and singing;
– cognitive and/or affective processes of singing (and collective singing practices);
– how to study the performative aspects of songs in historical contexts;
– the ‘power’/agency of song;
– the role of song and singing in social processes and historical developments; etc.

We invite proposals for 20-minute individual papers (max. 300 words) or alternative formats (pre-submission inquiry is encouraged). As the aim of this conference is to facilitate dialogue, there will be ample time for discussion and exchange. Please send your proposal, including your name, academic affiliation and a short biographical note, no later than 20 December 2019 to renee.vulto@ugent.be.

For more information, visit: https://www.songstudies.ugent.be/

De ballen van de koopman

Dorothee Sturkenboom

Mannelijkheid en Nederlandse identiteit in de tijd van de Republiek

Wordt verwacht in april 2019

Als buitenlanders aan Nederlanders denken, luidt de favoriete conclusie: het zijn koopmannen.
Dorothee Sturkenboom duikt diep de Gouden Eeuw in om de oorsprong van dat beeld te achterhalen én de bijbehorende ideeën over de mannelijkheid van deze kooplieden. Daarbij stuit ze op fascinerende tegenstellingen: Nederlanders worden neergezet als solide in de wereld van het geld maar weinig weerbaar wanneer het op oorlog voeren aankomt. Als superieur in het handeldrijven maar onder de plak van hun echtgenotes. Als tolerant en zachtmoedig met klanten maar onbuigzaam en hardvochtig in de omgang met volkeren overzee. De Nederlandse handelsidentiteit wordt gekenmerkt door een combinatie van zachtere en hardere stijlen van mannelijkheid.Met De ballen van de koopman levert Sturkenboom een verrassende en vernieuwende bijdrage aan de discussie in Nederland over identiteit.

Dorothee Sturkenboom is historicus. Na een twintigjarige loopbaan aan de universiteiten van Nijmegen, Los Angeles en Amsterdam werkt zij nu als onafhankelijk onderzoeker.COVERS3D.ballen

Conference: Imagineering Violence. Spectacle and Print in the Early Modern Period

poster ITEMP compressedHow can violence be represented and imagined? How can an artist document the violence of the times? What about the numerous ethical implications? When does a spectator become a voyeur? When does violence turn into spectacle? Can violence be aestheticized? Does an artist have a duty to document contemporary violence? These questions saturate modern art, from the horrors of War in Goya to the racial violence in Edward and Nancy Kienholz’s ‘Five Car Stud’. However, they are not new in themselves. The early modern period witnessed a true explosion of images on pain, suffering and violence across painting, print, theater, and public space. The public had plenty to choose from: sieges, executions, massacres: violence fascinated the early modern spectator, yet it simultaneously conjured up numerous questions, some of which are not unlike those posed today.

Together, historians and artists explore the early modern period, looking for new answers on the questions that concern us in the present by means of lectures, artistic presentations, and round table talks. Together, they will investigate how artists in the early modern period dealt with the violence of their time, and whether these age-old answers might shine a light on today’s ‘spectacle society’.

With artistic works by, amongst others,  Stef Lernous van Abattoir Fermé, Simon Pummell, Doina Kraal, Jan Rosseel, Enkidu Khaled, e.a. and lectures by internationally renowned cultural historians such as Jonathan Davies, Katie Hornstein and Benjamin Schmidt.

Find the short program here, and the poster here.

For the Huizinga Institute masterclass by Benjamin Schmidt (currently fully booked, with waiting list), see: https://www.huizingainstituut.nl/masterclass-by-benjamin-schmidt-violent-images-in-the-in-early-modern-period/