First Event in new Scottish Health Humanities Seminar and Masterclass Series, Edinburgh

Dr James Kennaway, “Bad Vibrations: Music as a Cause of Hysteria, Sex, Madness and Death?”

Time: 6.00-7.30pm (doors open at 5.30pm). Tuesday 26 March 2013.

Location: Room 1.9 in Doorway 6, Medical School, Teviot Place, Edinburgh



For most people, music is an entirely positive part of their lives. However, there has long been an undercurrent of anxiety about music and its medical effect on body and mind. Music has been used as a cure for disease since as far back as David’s lyre, but the notion that it might be a serious cause of mental and physical illness was rare until the late eighteenth-century. At that time, physicians started to argue that excessive music, or the wrong kind of music, could over-stimulate a vulnerable nervous system, leading to illness, hysteria, hypnosis, infertility, nymphomania, madness, immorality and even death. Since then, there have been successive waves of moral panics about supposed epidemics of musical nervousness, caused by everything from Wagner to jazz and rock ’n’ roll. It was this medical and critical debate that provided the psychiatric rhetoric of “degenerate music” that was the rationale for the persecution of musicians in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. By the 1950s, the focus of medical anxiety about music shifted to the idea that “musical brainwashing” and “subliminal messages” could strain the nerves and lead to mind control, mental illness and suicide. More recently, the prevalence of sonic weapons and the use of music in torture in the so-called War on Terror have both made the subject of music that is bad for the health worryingly topical.


Dr Kennaway’s Masterclass for early career scholars and practitioners (including postgraduates) will be held in the University of Edinburgh, 2.30-4.30pm on Tuesday 26 March 2013 (in the afternoon before the seminar). This will be an opportunity for less experienced researchers and practitioners to learn from Dr Kennaway in an informal small group context.

CFP: Malady and Mortality Conference, Falmouth University, Cornwall

Malady and Mortality – Illness, Disease and Death in Literary and Visual Culture

Conference, Falmouth University, Cornwall
19-20th September 2013

Keynote Speakers:
Professor Tony Walter, Centre for Death, University of Bath
Professor Alan Bleakley, Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry

Papers are invited on the following topics:

  • Health, Well Being and Environment
  • History of Medicine
  • Public Health and Medicine
  • Disease and Subjectivity
  • Disability and Agency
  • The Body in Pain
  • Palliative Care
  • Illness and Digital Technologies
  • Narrative, e-Narratives and Memory
  • Medical Intervention and Patient Testimony
  • Communication and Patient Networks
  • Medical Identities and Medical Gatekeepers
  • Sustainability, Quality of Life and Euthanasia
  • State Intervention and Legal Decisions
  • Artes Moriendi and Privacy
  • Definitions of Death
  • Rights and Ownership
  • Grief and Mourning

Please send abstracts (200 words max) to Dr Helen Thomas, with subject header ‘Malady and Mortality Conference’ by 1st May 2013


CFP: Medical Portraiture Workshop, King’s College London, 12 July 2013

This one-day workshop, to be held at King’s College London on 12 July 2013, will offer an opportunity to explore diverse disciplinary perspectives on the relationship between portraiture and medicine in the widest sense. We invite 20-minute presentations on any topic related to medical portraiture across periods and national contexts, including, but not restricted to, issues such as

  • The category of medical portraiture;
  •  Medical self-portraits;
  • Portraits of marginal practitioners such as medical technicians and modellers;
  •  Portraiture, suffering and pain.

The workshop is organised by Keren Hammerschlag, Douglas James, Ludmilla Jordanova and Anna Maerker at King’s College London. Please send an abstract of no more than 400 words and a brief biographical note to Keren Hammerschlag by 8 March 2013. We will notify applicants by the end of March.

CFP: The Body in Popular Fiction and Visual Culture

Materiality & Corporeality: The Body in Popular Fiction and Visual Culture

Postgraduate Conference, University of Portsmouth
Thursday 6th June 2013


Keynote Speaker: Professor Julian Wolfreys, Loughborough University –

Of Bodies, Being, and Loss: Memory, Amateriality, and the Spectrality of Touch


A symbol of shared experience and a locus of inscribed meaning, the body can be a source of fascination and disgust, of perfection, manipulation, destruction, abuse, and reclamation.This interdisciplinary conference seeks to explore the ways in which the body functions as a site for the expression of cultural anxieties within a range of literary and visual sources. It aims to consider the significance of the body as a central motif in Western philosophical and critical tradition, as well as the intersections between the fields of literature, art and film which place the body at the centre of debates surrounding gender, sexuality, identity, politics, philosophy and economics. We welcome contributions from postgraduates working in the fields of literary theory, cultural studies and the visual arts, and will consider submissions from related research areas.
Possible areas of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • The body in literature, art or film
  • The damaged, grotesque or carnivalesque body/the body as spectacle
  • Pleasure, pain, power and knowledge
  • (Re)Writing the body
  • Sexuality, gender, science and medicine
  • Marketing or consuming bodies
  • Perfecting/redesigning the body

Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words for papers lasting 20 minutes, and a brief biographical note (100 words) to for the attention of Emily Scott, Alexandra Messem and Melanie Seddon. Deadline for submissions: 22nd April 2013.

Autscape: Trustees and Treasurer Needed

Autscape is a UK-based autistic-led charity which runs a unique annual conference for the autistic community. The Autscape conference is a retreat from the demands of mainstream society and an escape to autistic-friendly space for a few days. This conference performs many functions: as a retreat, an educational conference, a social gathering, and an opportunity for advocacy and networking.

Autscape currently have a number of vacancies for trustees and are seeking to make the wider autism community aware of these opportunities. They need a diverse group of trustees with a range of skills to help Autscape continue to play an important and extraordinary role in the autistic community. They are also looking to appoint a new treasurer. Both posts entail 4-6 hours of work a month, and interested parties are encouraged to apply via email to

Please see the attached advertisements for more details, or visit

Trustee ad (approved 02.13)

Treasurer ad (approved 02.13)



Well-Being and Chronic Illness (‘New Thinking on Living with Dying’, AHRC Network Event)

2nd public research workshop for the AHRC network ‘New Thinking on Living with Dying’
10th June 2013
Foresight Centre: Liverpool

Confirmed participants include: Arthur Frank (Professor of Sociology, University of Calgary), Claire Colebrook (Professor Of English, Pennsylvania State University) and performance artist Liz Bentley.

We invite submissions of papers or recommendations for panel sessions which would be accessible to an interdisciplinary, public audience. Questions to consider might include:

  • How can we talk about well-being and chronic illness?
  • How is the sense of ‘who I am’ unsettled during life-limiting illness?
  • What is the relationship between remorse, loss, guilt, shame, and fear to life-limiting or chronic illness?
  • How can we accommodate new identities, bodily shapes and somatic capacities at this time?
  • Does chronic illness fit with any current disability model?
  • Is chronic illness a relational or social condition?

There is no fee for this event. For more information or for informal inquiries please contact Laura Green or visit our web site.

Assistant Professor in Disability Studies, University of Toledo

Position Summary: Assistant Professor in Disability Studies. This tenure-track faculty member will develop and teach undergraduate and graduate courses in Disability Studies, maintain a record of significant scholarly achievement, and play a role in the growth of Disability Studies at the University of Toledo.

Qualifications/Knowledge, Skills & Abilities: A Ph.D. or terminal degree in Disability Studies or a closely related field is required (completed by August 2013). Given the intensely interdisciplinary nature of Disability Studies, applications are welcomed from a wide variety of fields, from the humanities to the social sciences, from human services to business, from education to health sciences. Candidates should demonstrate clear evidence of (1) a national and international reputation, or their potential to establish one through an active program of research and/or creative activity; and (2) their potential to teach a diverse population effectively. An existing track record is a definite plus.

Preferred Qualifications: We are particularly interested in candidates with expertise in one or more of the following: global perspectives; law and policy; employment and labor; Deaf studies; cultural studies; bioethics and healthcare; the judicial system and imprisonment.

Closing Date: Open until filled.  Review of applications expected to begin approximately March 11, 2013.

Required Applicant Documents:  Cover Letter, curriculum Vitae, at least three reference letters.

Special Instructions to Applicants: Applicants must apply at in order to be considered for the position.
Applications should include a cover letter (including teaching and research interests); current CV; a recent and representative publication or other work sample (e.g., a film maker might submit a film); and three reference letters. If you have questions, please submit them to Dr. Kim Nielsen <>.

EEO Statement: The University of Toledo is an equal access, equal opportunity, affirmative action employer and educator

Disability Studies Courses at the University of Toledo (list includes established courses and courses under review):

DST 2020: Disability in the US
DST 3020: Definitions of Disability
DST 2410: Introduction to Deaf Studies
DST 2980: Special Topics in DST
DST 3030: Issues in Disability Studies
DST 3060: US Disability History
DST 3250: Disability & Life Narrative
DST 3980: Special Topics in DST
DST 4200: Crip Art, Crip Culture
DST 4400: Gender and Disability
DST 4800: Autism and Culture
DST 4850  Disability, War, and the Veteran
DST 4890: Research and Methodologies in Disability Studies
DST 4940: Internship
DST 4980: Special Topics in DST
DST 4990: Capstone in Disability Studies.

Further courses will be forthcoming as DST faculty are added.

Professor Kim E Nielsen, Ph.D.
School of Disability Studies, MS 920
University of Toledo
2801 W. Bancroft St.
Toledo, Ohio 43606

CFP for a special issue of the Journal of Women, Gender and Families of Color on Race, Gender and Disability

Although there is much discussion on gender/sexuality and race/ethnicity or gender and disability, there is a dearth of studies about the intersection of race, gender and disability from a critical perspective. This special issue will focus on articles that critically analyze these intersections, from different disciplinary perspectives. We conceptualize these categories broadly to include interrogations into the lives of people of color but also white subjects from a critical whiteness perspective; focus on gender as it encompasses interrogations of femininity, masculinity, transgender or intersex subjectivity and any form of sexual expression and identity and their intersection; and disability to encompass not only impairment but also the socio-cultural aspects that accompany it. Articles can use a variety of methods such as theory based, qualitative, quantitative, ethnographic, humanities based and more. These works should highlight the experiences of people, or their representations, with respect to race/ethnicity/nationality and gender/sexuality as they relate to disability.

Topics include but are not limited to:

  • Family caregiving or parenting at the intersections of gender/race/disability
  • Lived experiences of disabled women/people of color
  • Representations of disability in families of color in films and literature
  • News and media representations of race, disability and gender/sexuality
  • Historical analysis that highlights these intersections (e.g., eugenics)
  • Policy, activism and interventions that empower disabled people of color
  • Articles connecting disability studies, queer theory and women’s studies to critical race theory and critical whiteness studies
  • Analysis of policies related to education, employment, immigration and incarceration that centers on the intersections of race, gender and ability

Abstracts must be submitted by June 1, 2013, and completed manuscripts by October 30, 2013 to the guest editors: Sandy Magana,; Liat Ben Moshe, If you would like to review for this issue or have additional inquiries, please contact the guest editors.

Women, Gender, and Families of Color, published bi-annually in the spring and fall, is available electronically and in hardcopy ( It is sponsored by the University of Kansas and published by the University of Illinois Press. Founded in 1918, the University of Illinois Press ranks as one of the country’s most distinguished university presses. It publishes works of high quality for scholars, students, and the citizens of the state and beyond.

Liat Ben-Moshe, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Department of Disability and Human Development
University of Illinois at Chicago
1640 W. Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL 60608

CFP: Time for Change? Child, Youth, Family and Disability Conference, MMU

Elizabeth Gaskell Campus, Manchester Metropolitan University, Hathersage Road, Manchester, UK, M13 0JA

10.30 – 4.00pm, 18th & 19th June, 2013

The aim of the conference is to provide a space for disabled children, young people, family members and allies (including practitioners) to share their ideas, knowledge and expertise and to celebrate disabled children and young people’s lives.  We would like to invite disabled children, young people, their parents and carers (we would like to include people with physical, sensory and cognitive impairments as well as those people with mental health issues), as well as activists and academics in the field of disability studies and childhood studies to present at and to attend the event.  This year’s conference theme is ‘Time for Change?’  We are inviting contributors to talk about changes in the lives of children, young people and their families and suggest that you might like to address some of the following questions:

  • what has changed?
  •  how have you been involved in changing lives?
  • what changes would you like to see?
  • what are the barriers to and opportunities for change?

Day One will include accessible presentations and discussion points as well as opportunities to take part in workshop activities (further details to follow).

Day Two will include more formal presentations but we will particularly welcome presentations or discussion papers that tell a story, share a skill, some information or research in ways that try to be as accessible and creative as possible – for example, that use a range of presentations styles and media including photography, video and artwork.


To book your place visit:

We ask that you please register, stating any access requirements, two weeks before the event.


Please send us a short description of the ideas for your presentation by 10th May, 2013.

Travel & Parking

Travel information available at:

Parking is not available at Gaskell (except for blue badge holders) but there are car parks nearby, or catch the 147 bus from Piccadilly Station, ask for the Hathersage Road stop.


PLEASE NOTE: as this is a FREE event, we will not be providing refreshments.  Please bring your own or it will be possible to purchase food at the campus refectory.


For more information please contact: or 0161 247 2906.

CFP: Discourses of Madness (articles)

Call for Papers: Discourses of Madness / Discours de la Folie (Special volume of Neohelicon [43, 2016])

Guest-Editor: R.-L. Etienne Barnett)

Contributions on any aspect of madness in (of, and) textuality are welcome for consideration. Possible areas of focus, among a plethora of other options: literary representations of the alienated mind; mad protagonists or mad writers; madness as a vehicle of exile, as a form of marginalization, of dissipation, of disintegration, of revelation or self-revelation; interpretations of madness as a manifestation of structure, style, rhetoric, narrative; madness as a reflection of cultural assumptions, values, prohibitions; madness, as prophetic or dionysiac, poetic, or other; the esthetics of madness; philosophical,  ethical, ontological, epistemological, hermeneutic and esthetic implications of the discourse/narrative of madness..

From an alternative vantage point, one might question: how does the deviant mind-set of authorial figures and/or fictional characters determine the organization of time, space and plot in the narrative? How does the representation of delusional worlds differ from the representation of other “non-mad” mental acts (dreams, fantasies, aspirations) and from other fictional worlds (magic, imaginings, phantoms) — if it does? Contributors are welcome to address these and other questions in a specific work, in a group of works, or in a more general/theoretical reflection, in and across any national tradition(s), literary movement(s) or œuvre(s).


Do not mistake for wisdom these fantasies /Of your sick mind. (W. Soyinka)

I could spend my whole life prying loose the secrets of the insane. (A. Breton)

When we remember that we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained. (M. Twain)

If we lose our sanity/We can but howl the lugubrious howl of idiots/The howl of the utterly lost/Howling their nowhere-ness. (D. H. Lawrence)

When life itself seems lunatic, who knows where madness lies? (Cervantes)

There is always some reason in madness. (Nietzsche)

No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness. (Aristotle)

Behind their dark glass, the mad own nothing. (F. Scott Fitzgerald)

The madman will no longer be the exiled one, the one relegated to the margins of our cities, but rather he who becomes a stranger to the self, impugned for being who he is. (M. Foucault)

So long as man is protected by madness, he functions and flourishes. (E. Cioran)

Culture is perishing, as are we … in an avalanche of words, in sheer madness. (M. Kundera)

The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes. (A. Gide)

Books have led some to learning and others to madness. (Petrarch) •
What is life? A madness. What is life? An illusion, a shadow, a story. And the greatest good is yet minimal; for all life is a dream, and dreams themselves are only dreams. (Calderón de la Barca)

Where am I, I don’t know, I’ll never know, in the silence you don’t know, you’ll never know, you must go on, I can’t go on, I’ll go on. (S. Beckett)

Demoniac frenzy, moping melancholy, and moon-struck madness. (J. Milton)

Theoretical or applied contributions focused upon “discourses of madness” in the literary “arena” are invited and will be accorded full and serious consideration. Manuscripts in English, French German or Italian — not to exceed twenty (25) double-spaced pages, including notes, bibliography and appendices, where applicable — are welcome. Contributions written in any but one’s first (or native) language must be scrupulously reviewed, edited and proofed by a “native” specialist prior to submission.

Format and submission requirements: Papers must prepared in strict accordance with APA (not MLA) guidelines and are to be accompanied by an abstract and 6-8 key words or expressions in English. (A second abstract and set of key words in the language of the article, if not in English, is strongly recommended.)

Submit via email in the form of a word document (attachment) to: R.-L. Etienne Barnett at (primary submission address) with a second copy to (secondary submission address).

For further details on Neohelicon, refer to:

Submission deadline: 1st October 2015