Calls for Papers - Part 9

posted by maximilian hartmuth on 2005/07/15 13:14

[ Calls for Papers ]

A call for papers has been sent out for a specialist session at the 8th International Conference on Urban History (Stockholm, 30 August - 2 September 2006) under the title "Mourning urban change: testimonies of disaster and urban catastrophe since 1945". Deadline for abstracts: 1 October 2005. ---

Call for papers

Mourning urban change: testimonies of disaster and urban catastrophe
since 1945

Specialist session at the 8th International Conference on Urban History
Stockholm, 30 August - 2 September 2006.
Deadline for proposal submissions: 1 October 2005.

Natural disasters - fire, flood and famine, earthquake and plague - have
been a
focus of many studies of individual towns and cities. Often these
studies have
focused on the physical effects of destruction. Dramatic events attract
hype. Vivid pictures are flashed around the world. For an instant, the
becomes the centre of attention, nationally and even internationally. Yet
disasters have an individual and family dimension too. And once world media
attention has subsided, local populations are left to get on with the
reconstruction of their lives, as well as with the rebuilding of the urban

There are also other circumstances that radically influence urban
change. Wars
usually result in urban catastrophe, there are also cases of deliberate
destruction of a city as when neighbourhoods are cleared, central planning
imposed or urban redevelopment implemented. These are circumstances
forced by
human agents that could be considered along with natural disasters as
that provoke mourning.

This session explores how people mourn change, how they adjust to
dramatic new
circumstances, how they get on with their lives in the chaos resulting from
dramatic events that transform the rhythms and patterns of their lives.
concerned principally with oral history, testimonies of mourning welcomed by
this session also include written sources, such as memoirs, diaries,
poetry, newspaper and media stories that reveal how people 'mourn' the
of an era, when their cognitive worlds are disrupted, for whatever reason.

This session aims at comparing different European and world cities that have
passed through radical urban change in the period of time elapsed since the
Second World War. We welcome case studies addressing one, or several, of the
following issues:

# The concept of "mourning": its origin as a psychoanalytical concept
du deuil) and its use for urban history (and the social sciences in
# Modernity and change: Is there something intrinsically disruptive in the
cultural phenomenon that we usually refer to as modernity? Did modernity
about significant new ways of coping with radical change at societal level?
# Oral histories as alternative versions of urban change to dominant
interchange of personal experiences, media stories and official history.
# Competing narratives - class, ethnic or gender construction of
narratives on
urban change.
# Everyday life and processes of human adjustment on radical urban change.
# Continuity and/or rupture, how people re-construct continuity - old
and new
social and cultural practices.
# Collective memory - Building collective narratives around disruptive
events -
new community identities and commemorations of urban catastrophe.

We invite historians, anthropologists, sociologists, art and literary
historians, architects and others whose work might shed light on the subject
proposed. Please submit an abstract of approximately 500 words and a
short CV by
October 1, 2005 to both of the session organisers.

For further details of the Conference organization and site, registration,
bursaries etc., see:

Session organisers:
Dr. Maria Raluca Popa
New Europe College, Institute for Advanced Studies, Bucharest, Romania
Rotterdamseweg 296, 2628 AT Delft, The Netherlands

Dr. Valentina Gulin Zrnic
Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research, Ul. kralja Zvonimira 17,
Zagreb 10 000, Croatia
phone: ++ 385 1 4553 632
fax: ++ 385 1 4553 649

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