Posts by David Cunningham

Lorna Piatti-Farnell on ‘Evil, Reborn: Remaking Disney Villains and the Gothic Intertext’, Weds 11th December 2019

9 December 2019

Wednesday 11th December, 5.00-7.00 pm
Room 152-153 (Cayley Room), University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Evil, Reborn: Remaking Disney Villains and the Gothic Intertext
Lorna Piatti-Farnell (Auckland University of Technology) 

In an age when the film industry has given us a prolific stream of remakes, sequels, prequels and other creative off-shoots, it is not surprising to see Disney jump enthusiastically on the retelling bandwagon. Disney has recently developed their own distinctive form of ‘re-make’: the live-action re-make. Within this, Disney villains have often taken central stage. Aesthetically, the roots of Disney’s villains can be traced through fairy tales, Gothic literature and horror. The twenty-first century, however, has added a layer of complication. Narratives of redemption are constantly associated with well-known villains, often changing or reshuffling both physical and perceived moral characteristics that were once seen to be untouchable. In the contemporary era, animated Disney villains cannot be considered as singular entities, but must be perceived as intertextual figures that are continuously remade and reborn across narrative and media spectrums.

Lorna Piatti-Farnell is Director of the Popular Culture Research Centre at AUT. Her many books include Consuming Gothic: Food and Horror in Film (Palgrave 2017) and The Vampire in Contemporary Popular Literature (Routledge 2014).

All welcome, but guests from outside Westminster should RSVP Frankie Hines: frankie.hines@my.westminster.ac.uk OR Baptiste Danel: baptiste.danel@my.westminster.ac.uk

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CANCELLED: Fabien Jobard, “Liberal, Authoritarian, or Police State? Defining the French State According to its Police” seminar, Weds 4th December 2019

3 December 2019

Due to a major strike in France, including on the French railways, we are sorry to have to cancel tonight’s event with Fabien Jobard. We will try to reschedule this session of the seminar series “French Politics: A Neighbour’s History of the Present” next year. Apologies for any inconvenience. 

Wednesday 4 December 2019, 6.00 – 7.30 pm
The Boardroom, first floor, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Liberal, Authoritarian, or Police State? Defining the French State According to its Police
Fabien Jobard (CNRS / Centre for Sociological Research on Law and Penal Institutions)

Fabien Jobard specialises in matters concerning the police in France and Germany. He is a research director at the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and at the Centre for Sociological Research on Law and Penal Institutions (CESDIP). He also is a visiting professor at Louvain Global College of Law. He recently published “Transformation of State’s Use of Force in Europe” in Desmond King & Patrick Le Galès (ed.), Reconfiguring European States in Crisis (Oxford University Press, 2017) and, with Daniel Schönpflug, Politische Gewalt im urbanen Raum (De Gruyter, 2019). Fabien Jobard is also the co-author, with Dave Waddington and Mike King, of the book Rioting in the UK and France (Willan, 2009).

Part of the series French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’, co-organised by the IMCC in collaboration with our friends in the Centre for the Study of Democracy, and with the support of the French Embassy and the Political Studies Association.

Free to attend, but booking via eventbrite is essential.

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Processing Memory: Plantation Pasts and Petrochemical Futures on America’s Gulf Coast seminar, Weds 27th November 2019

25 November 2019

Wednesday 27th November, 5.00-7.00 pm
Room 152-153 (Cayley Room), University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Processing Memory: Plantation Pasts and Petrochemical Futures on America’s Gulf Coast
Lucy Bond (IMCC, Westminster) and Jessica Rapson (King’s College London)

Historically America’s premier region for the production of sugar and cotton, the Gulf of Mexico is now dominated by the oil industry. Many of the African-American communities in this region are descendants of workers who were enslaved on plantations and exploited as sharecroppers during the Jim Crow era. Today, structural racism continues to dominate life and, frequently, determine premature death in this area, as petrochemical manufacturers displace communities, pollute air and water, and destroy the wetlands that protect the coastline from hurricanes and flooding. Drawing on our recent fieldwork and interviews with environmental activists, heritage entrepreneurs and legal practitioners, this paper interrogates the historical imaginaries that have framed Louisiana’s transition from plantation to petrochemical economy. The paper explores the oil industry’s impact on heritage and tourist narratives in a cross-section of Louisiana, which stretches from Morgan City to Garyville, highlighting practices that challenge the petrochemical industry’s toxic and violent domination of the Gulf Coast.

All welcome, but guests from outside Westminster should RSVP Frankie Hines: frankie.hines@my.westminster.ac.uk OR Baptiste Danel: baptiste.danel@my.westminster.ac.uk

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Ninon Grangé, The State and the Exception: Existence, Fiction, and Reality, November 14 2019

7 November 2019

Thursday 14 October 2019, 5.30 – 7.00 pm
Room UG05, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

The State and the Exception: Existence, Fiction, and Reality
Ninon Grangé (University Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis/LLCP)

The recent evolution of the state of emergency in France and the confusion between war on terrorism and social repression have required that we define the state of exception anew. The structure of the so-called “as if” (“as if we were at war”) seems to have pervaded our representations and our laws. Thus, the traditional challenges faced by the state (État), i.e. its preservation and the risk to collapse, have to be made more complex. The reality of the state should not be mistaken with its existence: it relies on a dialectical relation between power and powerlessness, on the one hand, and on belief and imagination, on the other hand. Through the study of contemporary French politics, the issue of political fictionalism will therefore be tackled.

Ninon Grangé teaches political philosophy at the University Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis and at the New College of Political Studies (NCEP). Her research focuses on war, political fictions, political identity, and political temporalities. Her publications include Emergency and Terror: The State of Exception, War, and Political Temporalities [French title: L’urgence et l’effroi. L’état d’exception, la guerre et les temps politiques, 2018], Forgetting Civil War? Stasis: Chronicle of a Disappearance [Oublier la guerre civile ? Stasis : chronique d’une disparition, 2015]; Carl Schmitt: Nomos, Law, and Conflict in International Relations [Carl Schmitt: nomos, droit et conflit dans les relations internationale, 2013]; and Of Civil War [De la guerre civile, 2009].

Part of the series French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’, co-organised by the IMCC in collaboration with our friends in the Centre for the Study of Democracy, and with the support of the French Embassy and the Political Studies Association.

Free to attend, but booking via eventbrite is essential.

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A New ‘Form’ of Feminism seminar, Weds 13 November 2019

7 November 2019

Wednesday 13th November, 5.00-7.00 pm
Room 152-153 (Cayley Room), University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

A New ‘Form’ of Feminism: Mary Hays’ Female Biography (1803)
Susan Civale (Canterbury)

The Dissenter and feminist writer, Mary Hays, who is most famous for her scandalous autobiographical fiction The Memoirs of Emma Courtney (1796), has received comparatively less attention for her Female Biography, an epic biographical dictionary that she published in 1803. In her preface to Female Biography, Hays states her aims: ‘My pen has been taken up in the cause, and for the benefit of my own sex. For their improvement, and to their entertainment, my labours have been devoted’. In the six volumes that follow, Hays details the lives of over 300 women from various countries, periods and social backgrounds. She champions women’s achievements and holds up her subjects as complex, flawed women. Recently, critics like Gina Luria Walker, Mary Spongberg and Miriam Wallace have argued for the importance of this text as a contribution to Romantic life writing, historiography and/or feminism. However, one aspect of Female Biography has still received little attention: its form. Though organised alphabetically, the entries seem chaotic, repetitive and uneven. This paper will explore how the encylopaedic form of the book produces several important effects, including alphabetical juxtapositions that reveal previously, intersecting cross-references that ask readers to make connections between entries, and recurring themes that render female experience as circular rather than linear. It will also examine how Hays uses certain entries to speak by proxy. By demonstrating how these formal features operate, the paper will argue that the form of Female Biography links directly to Hays’ feminist project, by cultivating a reinterpretation of women’s roles and representations in history, encouraging active reading practices for her female audience.

Susan Civale is Senior Lecturer at Canterbury Christchurch University. She recently published a monograph titled Romantic Women’s Life Writing: Reputation and Afterlife (Manchester University Press, 2019). This book considers how the publication of women’s ‘private’ lives, through diaries, auto/biographies, letters, and memoirs, influenced their literary afterlives.

All welcome, but guests from outside Westminster should RSVP Frankie Hines: frankie.hines@my.westminster.ac.uk OR Baptiste Danel: baptiste.danel@my.westminster.ac.uk

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Unpacking Dickens’ Pictures from Italy seminar, October 30th 2019

28 October 2019

Wednesday 30th October, 5.00-7.00 pm
Room 152-153 (Cayley Room), University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

A Thousand Words: Unpacking Dickens’ Pictures From Italy
Peter Orford (Buckingham)

In July 1844 Charles Dickens travelled with his family to Italy, basing himself in Genoa for a year. His adventures abroad were captured in his letters home, subsequently transformed into a newspaper series ‘Travelling Letters’ in 1846, and ultimately collected and bound into Pictures From Italy later that year. The final travel narrative, as it now exists, is therefore removed several times from Dickens’ initial experience up to two years earlier. In exploring the legitimacy of Pictures and its earlier incarnations to determine what constitutes the ‘true’ version of this text, the seminar will pose wider questions about authorial intention, editorial intervention and the elusiveness of creating a definitive edition.

Dr Peter Orford is Course Director for the MA by Research in Charles Dickens Studies at the University of Buckingham. He is the author of The Mystery of Edwin Drood: Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel and our endless attempts to end it (2018) and has been commissioned by Oxford University Press to prepare a new edition of Pictures From Italy.

All welcome, but guests from outside Westminster should RSVP Frankie Hines: frankie.hines@my.westminster.ac.uk OR Baptiste Danel: baptiste.danel@my.westminster.ac.uk

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Matt Charles on Coleridge’s Bulls, Weds 16th October 2019

14 October 2019

Wednesday 16th October, 5.00-7.00 pm
Room 201, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Examining Coleridge’s Bulls: Humour, Fancy and the Political Imagination
Matthew Charles (IMCC / University of Westminster)

‘He’ll regret it till his dying day, if ever he lives that long’. The English Romantic Samuel Taylor Coleridge defined the bull, a type of humorous utterance, as ‘a mental juxtaposition of incongruous ideas with the sensation, but without the sense, of connection’. Coleridge repeatedly returns to this linguistic form in his notebooks and published writings between 1801 and 1817, with the bull coming to acquire a profound, albeit ambiguous, place within the aesthetics, philosophy and psychology of Coleridge’s attempts to define Romanticism, specifically in relation to his distinction between fantasy/imagination and allegory/symbol. Drawing on later modernist criticism of the false distinction between allegory and symbol, this talk proposes a comparable reconsideration of the devaluation of fancy in Coleridge’s broader ‘politics of the imagination’ and so a re-evaluation of the bull’s humour.

Matthew Charles is Senior Lecturer in the School of Humanities at the University of Westminster, and author of the forthcoming Modernism Between Benjamin and Goethe (Bloomsbury 2019).

All welcome, but guests from outside Westminster should RSVP Frankie Hines: frankie.hines@my.westminster.ac.uk OR Baptiste Danel: baptiste.danel@my.westminster.ac.uk

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Opening evening for Techne doctoral applicants, Weds 6th November

9 October 2019

Wednesday 6th November 2019, 5.30 – 8.00 pm
University of Westminster, 115 New Cavendish Street, London W1W 6UW

Techne: AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership
Open Evening for Applicants for 2020 entry

Looking to do a PhD in 2020? Come and meet with academics, including those affiliated with the IMCC, to find out about the AHRC-funded techne doctoral studentships and programme of development, training and networking opportunities. Academic staff from all techne universities will be available to discuss your research proposal. We can’t guarantee an expert in your specific subject area, but all will be experienced in guiding doctoral applications. Administrators will also be on hand to advise on the application process.

For further details on the techne scheme see: http://www.techne.ac.uk/

Book a place at the open evening via this eventbrite link. Please register for one of the 3 sessions at 5:30pm, 6:15pm and 7pm. There will be refreshments available throughout the evening.

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Sophie Wahnich on the Yellow Vests, French Politics Today, Thursday 10th October, 5.30

9 October 2019

Thursday 10 October 2019, 5.30 – 7.00 pm
Room UG05, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Democracy Taken in Vice: Understanding the ‘Yellow Vests’ Event
Sophie Wahnich (CNRS/EHESS)

Sophie Wahnich is a Director of Research in History and Political Science at the French Institute of Scientific Research (CNRS) and the Director of the Interdisciplinary Institute of Anthropology of the Contemporary at the EHESS. She is a regular columnist for the daily newspaper Libération. Her work as an academic and public intellectual approaches contemporary issues facing Western democracies (terror, nationalism, globalisation, refugees, war, trauma, religion, collective memory), which she studies alongside the historical achievements and universal ideals of the French Revolution. Her book In Defence of the Terror was translated into English and published by Verso in 2012, with an introduction by Slavoj Zizek.

Part of the series French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’, co-organised by the IMCC in collaboration with our friends in the Centre for the Study of Democracy, and with the support of the French Embassy and the Political Studies Association.

Free to attend, but booking via eventbrite is essential.

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English Literature and Culture research seminar series, Oct – Dec 2019

9 October 2019

The latest series of English Literature and Culture research seminars for Autumn 2019 have now been announced, starting with a paper by the IMCC’s own Matthew Charles.

Wednesday 16th October, 5.00 – 7.00 pm
Room 201, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

Examining Coleridge’s Bulls: Humour, Fancy and the Political Imagination
Matthew Charles (IMCC/University of Westminster)

Wednesday 30th October, 5.00 – 7.00 pm
Room 152, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

A Thousand Words: Unpicking Dickens’ Pictures from Italy
Peter Orford (University of Buckingham)

Wednesday 13th November, 5.00 – 7.00 pm
Room 152, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

A New ‘Form’ of Feminism: Mary Hays’ Female Biography (1803)
Susan Civale (Canterbury)

Wednesday 27th November, 5.00 – 7.00 pm
Room 152, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

Processing Memory: Heritage, Industry and Environmental Racism in the American Gulf States
Lucy Bond (IMCC/University of Westminster) & Jessica Rapson (KCL)

Wednesday 11th December, 5.00 – 7.00 pm
Room 152, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

Evil, Reborn: Remaking Disney and the Villain Intertext in Film and Popular Culture
Lorna Piatti-Farnell (Aukland University of Technology)

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Pop and Politics at PCL, ‘Digging Deeper’ at the Soho Poly, November 22nd 2019

9 October 2019

Friday 22 November, 2.00 – 4.00 pm
Meeting point: University of Westminster reception, 4–12 Little Titchfield Street, London W1W 7BY

Pop and Politics at PCL

‘Pop and Politics at PCL’ is a specially curated event celebrating the relationship between Pop and Politics at the Polytechnic of Central London (PCL). PCL was the name between 1970 and 1992 of what is now the University of Westminster. The event includes a talk, musical performance and a small exhibition, and takes place on the anniversary of the day that Pete Shelley (Buzzcocks) turned up unannounced to play an acoustic set for students who had occupied the Poly’s Regent Street site.

The event is free, but booking is essential via this Eventbrite link.

This event is part of ‘Digging Deeper: Art, Music and Memory at the Soho Poly’, which is, in turn, part of the nationwide Being Human festival. Adding to this celebration, the University of Westminster is also hosting two other events:

On Monday 18 November, join award winning poet Dr Hannah Copley for a lunchtime exploration of music and memory in a zine workshop in the venue’s revived ‘Arts Workshop’.

In honour of its early incarnation as a folk club, come and disrupt your day on Thursday 21 November with a lunchtime gig by Martin Stephenson, one of the UK’s most perceptive and best-loved songwriters . This will be the first live concert in the iconic basement space since the last ‘Polyfolk’ performance in 1970.

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London Indie Press Book Fair, University of Westminster, Saturday 19 October

23 September 2019

Saturday 19 October 2019, 12.00 – 18.00
Fyvie Hall, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B

London Indie Book Fair

Organised and hosted by the Contemporary Small Press project. It’s free, but it would be great if people could register here.

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Contested Identities in Costa Rica: Book launch and screening of “We the Stones”, October 5th

12 September 2019

Saturday 5th October, 1.00 – 4.00 pm
Birkbeck Cinema, 43 Gordon Square, London

Contested Identities in Costa Rica: Book launch and screening

Our colleague Liz Harvey-Kattou will be in conversation at Birkbeck, University of London, about her new book Contested Identities in Costa Rica: Constructions of the ‘tico’ in Literature and Film (Liverpool University Press, 2019), followed by a screening of Alvaro Torres Crespo’s recent film Nosotros las piedras / We the Stones (2018), shown for the first time in the UK.

Contested Identities in Costa Rica: Constructions of the Tico in Literature and Film explores the small Central American nation, famed for its ecological credentials and its reputation as “the happiest country in the world”. A rare and urgent inquiry into Costa Rican literature and film, this book looks at protest literature from the 1970s by Quince Duncan, Carmen Naranjo, and Alfonso Chase, who defied the normative discourse from their Afro-Costa Rican, feminist, and queer perspectives, and at the contemporary cinema that is redrawing the map of filmmaking in the region, including films by Esteban Ramírez, Paz Fábrega, Jurgen Ureña, and Patricia Velásquez. The author will be in conversation with Fernando Chaves Espinach, from the MA Film Programming and Curating at Birkbeck, University of London.

We the Stones / Nosotros las Piedras (2018, 74’, digital) follows a group of gold panners who live deep in Costa Rica’s jungle, in a protected area from which the government has repeatedly tried to expel them. Several years in the making, this piercing, tender portrait of men in the margins of society questions how nature and its conservation are discussed in one of the key sites for climate change and environmental protection. Intimate and with rich cinematography by Caleb B. Kuntz, the film admiringly contemplates how masculinity and political identities are shaped in the shadow of one of the densest jungles in Central America.

Booking via eventbrite here.

The programme is curated by Fernando Chaves Espinach from the MA Film Programming and Curating at Birkbeck, presented by the Embassy of Costa Rica in the UK and the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image (BIMI) with support from the Centre for Iberian and Latin American Studies (CILAVS).

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One Hundred Years of Night and Day conference, Saturday 26th October

12 September 2019

Saturday 26 October, 9.30 – 5.30
School of Humanities, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

One Hundred Years of Night and Day

In her diary in 1920, Virginia Woolf wrote: ‘I don’t suppose I’ve ever enjoyed any writing so much as I did the last half of N. & D.’ Her happiness with the novel was characteristically short-lived. In 1932 she wrote that ‘N. & D. is dead.’ Likewise with critics, the novel has moved in and out of favour. Coming as it did after the often surreal subversion of the Bildungsroman that is The Voyage Out, it has been sometimes read by Woolf’s contemporaries and more recent critics alike as a step back towards realist fiction. Famously described by Katherine Mansfield in 1920 as ‘Jane Austen up to date,’ and by critic Randy Malamud in 1989 as ‘a stillborn modernist artefact,’ the question of where this novel exists on the spectrum between realist and modern is one that persists in Woolf criticism, right up to present day. But as well as considerations of its position in the broad narrative of Woolf’s relationship to realism and modernism, Night and Day has provided fertile ground for critics to explore a wide range of ideas presented by its content. Its engagement with Shakespeare, with women’s suffrage, with mathematics, with class; its portrait of London; its silence on the First World War – all have led critics to new and exciting enquiries.

One hundred years after its initial publication, this one-day symposium in the heart of London seeks to encourage work that considers Night and Day and its innovations, breaking away from readings of the text as a mis-step to consider the rich, unusual, and sometimes difficult ideas that the novel offers.

Keynote address by Dr. Suzana Zink, Université de Neuchâtel.

Full programme and booking via eventbrite here.

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Eric Fassin on French Politics, Thursday 26 September

9 September 2019

Thursday 26 September 2019, 5.30 – 7.00 pm
Fyvie Hall, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’
Éric Fassin (University Paris 8 Vincennes – Saint-Denis/LEGS)

Éric Fassin is Professor of Sociology at the University of Paris 8 St-Denis. His research focuses on contemporary sexual and racial politics in France and the United States and their intersections (in particular, concerning immigration issues) and on the politics of populism. He is author of L’inversion de la question homosexuelle (2005), Droit conjugal et unions de même sexe: mariage, partenariat et concubinage dans neuf pays européens (with Kees Waaldijk, 2008) and Le sexe politique. Genre et sexualité au miroir transatlantique (2009). His recent interview in the journal Radical Philosophy can be read here.

Chaired by David Cunningham (IMCC)

Part of the series French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’, co-organised by the IMCC in collaboration with our friends in the Centre for the Study of Democracy, and with the support of the French Embassy and the Political Studies Association.

Free to attend, but booking via eventbrite is essential.

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Bond Girls: Body, Fashion and Gender book launch, Sunday 27 October

9 September 2019

Sunday 27 October 2019
Regent Street Cinema

Bond Girls: Body, Fashion and Gender book launch

We are delighted to announce the launch of our colleague Monica Germana’s forthcoming new book: Bond Girls: Body, Fashion and Gender (Bloomsbury). The event includes a special screening of Goldfinger (3-5), followed by a Q&A (5-6), and the book launch itself (6pm) in the cinema bar.

Please reserve tickets via the Regent Street Cinema site:
https://www.regentstreetcinema.com/programme/goldfinger-book-launch/

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Call for Papers: Remapping the cultural and linguistic landscape of the Chinese in Britain

9 September 2019

Saturday 15 February 2020, University of Westminster

Call for Papers: Remapping the Cultural and Linguistic landscape of the Chinese in Britain

Confirmed keynote speaker: Professor Caroline Knowles (Goldsmiths, University of London)

 The Chinese in Britain is a small but one of the fastest growing communities. According to Office for National Statistics, the number of Chinese in Britain has increased from 247,000 in 1991 to 400,000 in 2011, and it is estimated the total number of Chinese has reached 500,000 by 2015. Approximately two-thirds of Chinese in Britain were born outside UK, with the majority coming from Hong Kong, China and Southeast Asia. The past two decades has witnessed a steady rise in the number of people from mainland China, including professionals, skilled workers, investors and young people who come to study in UK’s schools and universities. The existing literature on the Chinese in Britain has predominately focused on the Cantonese-speaking communities from Hong Kong and to a lesser extent Southeast Asian countries. There is an urgent need to document and conceptualize this important demographic and cultural shift, not only for a better understanding of the new development of Chinese communities in the UK but also for the benefit of Britain whose future is increasingly built upon its understanding of and relations with the rest of the world including China.

This conference is aimed at addressing this gap by bringing together researchers, Chinese language teachers, community leaders and policy makers to identify and examine the changing linguistic and cultural landscape of the Chinese in Britain. It seeks to (1) unveil the ways in which the Chinese in Britain have changed into an unprecedentedly diverse and dynamic society in the dual contexts of China’s global rise and multicultural Britain; (2) explore new features and dis/continuity in the transformation of the British Chinese communities, mediated by (sub) ethnicity, linguistic identity, class, gender and generation; (3) discuss the extent to which this demographic and cultural change is shaped by and shaping the relationship between global China and post-Brexit Britain.

We welcome papers that engage with these three interrelated areas of discussion from diverse disciplinary backgrounds. Suggested themes include:

Language and languaging
New mobilities and transnational connections
Everyday negotiation of borders, identities and belongings
Diasporic heritage and heritagisation
Representation, articulation and integration
Community building

Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words and a brief bio to Dr. Cangbai Wang (c.wang6@westminster.ac.uk) by 30 September 2019. Authors of selected abstracts will be notified before the end of October 2019. Draft papers will be expected by mid-January 2020. Selected articles will be published as an edited volume or a Special Issue on peer-reviewed journal.

This conference is organised by HOMELandS in collaboration with the Contemporary China Centre of University of Westminster and funded by Language Acts and World Making Small Grant Scheme, AHRC Open World Research Initiative (OWRI).

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French Politics: A Neighbour’s ‘History of the Present’ seminar series 2019-20

4 September 2019

The IMCC is delighted to announce a series of public lectures to be held at the University of Westminster in collaboration with our friends in the Centre for the Study of Democracy, and with the support of the French Embassy and the Political Studies Association.

Lectures will take place monthly, normally on a Thursday evening from 5.30 – 7.00 pm, and are free to attend, but booking is essential.

Thursday 26th September – Fyvie Hall, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street
Eric Fassin (University Paris 8 Vincennes – Saint-Denis/LEGS): Introduction

Thursday 10th October – Room UG05, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street
Sophie Wahnich (CNRS/TRAM): “Democracy Taken in Vice: Understanding the ‘Yellow Vests’ Event”

Thursday 14th November – Room UG05
Ninon Grangé (University Paris 8/LLCP): on the state of exception

Wednesday 4th December – Room UG05
Fabien Jobard (CNRS/CESDIP): “Liberal, Authoritarian, or Police State? Defining the French State According to its Police”

Thursday 30th January – Fyvie Hall
Syliane Larcher (CNRS/IRIS): on Afrofeminism and French universalism

Thursday 13th February – Fyvie Hall
Sébastien Chauvin (University of Lausanne/CEG): on LGBTQI struggles and French universalism

March 2020 (TBC)
Norman Ajari (University Toulouse 2 Jean Jaurès/ERRAPHIS): on the racialised man produced as a threat in France

April 2020 (TBC)
Elsa Dorlin (University Paris 8): on violence entailed by the denial of France as postcolonial

Thursday 11th June
Nacira Guénif-Souilamas (University Paris 8/CEFEG): on subjectivities who already live as postcolonial

The events are free and open to all, but please do not forget to book on Eventbrite.

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Deaths at Sea: Migration and Art symposium, Weds 10th July 2019

10 July 2019

Wednesday 10th July 2019, 6-9 pm
P21 Gallery, 21-27 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD

Death at Sea: Migration and Art

Accompanying the exhibition Sink Without Trace, co-curated by our colleague Federica Mazzara and the artists Maya Ramsay.

Speakers include:

Iain Chambers, Oriental University, Naples
Almir Koldzic, Co-Director, Counterpoints Arts
Federica Mazzara, Co-Curator of Sink Without Trace
Maya Ramsay, Co-Curator of Sink Without Trace
Valentina Zagaria, London School of Economics
Artists from the Sink Without Trace exhibition

Book a place here.

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One Hundred Years of Virginia Woolf’s Night and Day, October 26 2019

13 May 2019

Saturday 26 October
School of Humanities, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

One Hundred Years of Night and Day

In her diary in 1920, Virginia Woolf wrote: ‘I don’t suppose I’ve ever enjoyed any writing so much as I did the last half of N. & D.’ Her happiness with the novel was characteristically short-lived. In 1932 she wrote that ‘N. & D. is dead.’ Likewise with critics, the novel has moved in and out of favour. Coming as it did after the often surreal subversion of the Bildungsroman that is The Voyage Out, it has been sometimes read by Woolf’s contemporaries and more recent critics alike as a step back towards realist fiction. Famously described by Katherine Mansfield in 1920 as ‘Jane Austen up to date,’ and by critic Randy Malamud in 1989 as ‘a stillborn modernist artefact,’ the question of where this novel exists on the spectrum between realist and modern is one that persists in Woolf criticism, right up to present day. But as well as considerations of its position in the broad narrative of Woolf’s relationship to realism and modernism, Night and Day has provided fertile ground for critics to explore a wide range of ideas presented by its content. Its engagement with Shakespeare, with women’s suffrage, with mathematics, with class; its portrait of London; its silence on the First World War – all have led critics to new and exciting enquiries.

One hundred years after its initial publication, this one-day symposium in the heart of London seeks to encourage work that considers Night and Day and its innovations, breaking away from readings of the text as a mis-step to consider the rich, unusual, and sometimes difficult ideas that the novel offers.

Funding is available to contribute towards speaker travel costs. Lunch will be provided.

Please send abstracts of 150-250 words for 20 minute papers to rosie.reynolds@my.westminster.ac.uk by 31stJuly 2019.

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