Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Rethinking the Crisis across Languages and Cultures

12-13 May 2023, University of Warwick - Oculus (room OC1.01) and online - Join the symposium online here!

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Professor Federico Federici (University College London, Translation Studies)Link opens in a new window

Professor Michele Aaron (University of Warwick, Film and Television Studies)Link opens in a new window

Professor Florian Mussgnug (University College London, Comparative Literature and Italian Studies)

In recent years, the idea of global crisis has become a common currency we have grown accustomed to. The contradictory nature of the crisis, however, has proven to be one of the biggest catalysts for change, simultaneously destabilising and shaping our societies. While Latour posits that ‘there is a moment when a never-ending crisis turns into a way of life,’ Agamben contends that ‘today, crisis has become an instrument of rule. It serves to legitimise political and economic decisions that in fact dispossess citizens and deprive them of any possibility of decision.’ Be they economical, ecological, psychological or moral, crises have shaped – and continue to shape – the very essence of our human existence.

This symposium will delve into the controversial aspects of the crisis, examining both its potential as a catalyst for positive change and creation and its use as a tool of control, dispossession, or simply a destructive force. It will provide the opportunity to explore crises as a source of artistic and intellectual creation and recreation. Engaging with scholars researching across a variety of disciplines, contexts and time periods, this conference will be a collaborative opportunity to propose a series of questions including but not limited to: How has the concept of crisis changed over time? How have economic, ethical and psychological crises shaped our society? How have they shaped our cultural values and generated new forms of aesthetics? How is the concept of crisis related to the apocalypse and extreme changes and what metaphorical values do they have?

Themes may include (but not limited to):

- Representations and aesthetics

- Migration and exile

- Queer and gender studies

- Historical and cultural crises

- Postcolonialism and Decolonisation

- Psychoanalysis and Trauma

- Development studies

- Feminist theory

- Marginalised communities

- Media and communication

- Linguistic crises

The Symposium welcomes abstracts for papers, project presentations and exchanges of ideas from all of the Warwick schools. It aims to attract the attention of academic staff, master’s and doctoral students and early-career researchers working within the University of Warwick and beyond. Undergraduate students are also very much encouraged to attend the event.

Everyone interested in presenting a paper should send a short abstract (max. 250 words) and a biographical note (max. 150 words) to the following email address by 10 March 2023:

Papers will be 20 minutes in length and should be given in English.

We aim to make this a hybrid event, with a preference for in-person attendance. Please specify in your email whether you wish to present your paper in-person or online.

Publication timeline:

Abstracts deadline: 10 March 2023

Notification of acceptance: 24 March 2023

Date of symposium: 12-13 May 2023