CFP: Association for Medical Humanities Annual Conference, Keele

Location: Keele University

Date: 28th – 30th June

The overarching theme for this year’s AMH conference is that of Critical Stories in the context of both Humanities and Arts research and production. This three-day conference will include plenary addresses by Dr Ima Jackson from Glasgow Caledonian University, Dr Mike Shooter, President of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy CBE, and Professor Mark Jackson, Exeter University. The programme will feature a reception, dinner, tour and poetry reading at the renowned and historic Josiah Wedgwood Museum on the first night, and a reception and banquet at Keele Hall on the second night.

Artistic research, music, performance and collaboration lie at the heart of this year’s conference. One session will take place at the New Vic theatre, the first purpose-built theatre in the round in Europe where there will be an art exhibition by a local art group, Shires’ Artists. The venue is ideal for showcasing music and performances relating to the themes of the conference. The Emergency Poet will be available to all delegates on the final day in her repurposed ambulance outside Keele Hall and will conclude the conference with some of her own poetry inspired by the conference events and informal conversations with delegates.

The conference sessions will focus on stories about health, illness and disability across the age ranges and from different cultures with the aim of enhancing clinical practice and academic discourse. The conference will bring together people from different disciplines including academics from the humanities, social sciences, health and education as well as a range of healthcare practitioners and service-users. Differences and similarities in the culture and experiences of these disciplines will create challenges and opportunities for learning from one another not just in the formal sessions but, equally important, at the social events.

We are currently accepting submissions for individual paper and panel proposals and the conference will also host an array of exhibitions, poetry and performances. If you would like more information or to submit a proposal by 1st February 2017, please visit our website, where you will also find information about postgraduate prizes, programme details, and conference registration.

CFP: Medical Machines in Antiquity Conference, Glasgow

Location: University of Glasgow

Date: 19th-20th May 2017

The technological capabilities and mechanical achievements of the Greeks and Romans have been the subject of considerable scholarly interest in recent years. Consequently, multi and interdisciplinary collaborative research projects have not only investigated the archaeological remains of devices, such as the Antikythera Mechanism, but also utilised the instructions provided in treatises, such as Hero of Alexandria’s On Automata, to undertake experimental archaeological reconstructions of those for which the remains do not survive and develop working prototypes. The role of machines in ancient medicine, however, has been much less scrutinised. To date, the lion’s share of scholarly attention has focused on medical and surgical instruments rather than medical and surgical machinery. While some mechanical and pneumatic devices such as drills, dilators and syringes – examples of which survive in the archaeological record – have been carefully considered, other more complicated contraptions attested only in literature have been overlooked. In point of fact, the most recent extensive survey of ancient medical equipment, Lawrence Bliquez’s 2015 The Tools of Asclepius: Surgical Instruments in Greek and Roman Times, deliberately excluded them entirely (p. x). Yet medical treatises dating back to the fifth century BCE describe a variety of machinery including, but not limited to, benches, ladders, racks, and chests that assist with the treatment of dislocations and fractures. Despite renewed interest in ancient science and technology, the use of machines in medicine in ancient Greece and Rome remains an understudied area, and it is past time for a reassessment. This two-day workshop will offer an opportunity to reassess the evidence for the use of machines in medicine in ancient Greece and Rome.

Potential areas of investigation include but are not limited to:

  • Medical machines in ancient literature
  • Medical machines in the archaeological record
  • The technical aspects of design, production and usage of medical machines
  • The relationship between medical machines and medical instruments
  • The relationship between medical machines and other types of machine
  • Experimental archaeological reconstruction of medical machines
  • The reception of ancient medical machines in later historical periods

Confirmed speakers:

  • Dr Ian Ruffell (University of Glasgow)
  • Dr Laurence Totelin (Cardiff University)
  • Dr Georgia Petridou (University of Liverpool)

Papers should be of 40 minutes’ length, and should not have been previously published or delivered at a major conference. Please submit your abstract (200-300 words, either Word or PDF format) to Dr Jane Draycott ( by 31st January 2017. Please include your name, academic affiliation, and contact details in your email. Successful contributions may be considered for publication in a peer-reviewed conference volume.

CFP: First International Conference on Historical Medical Discourse, Milan

First International Conference on Historical Medical Discourse (CHIMED-1)

Location: University of Milan

Date: 14th-16th June 2017

It is a pleasure to announce that the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at the University of Milan will host the “First International Conference on Historical Medical Discourse” (CHIMED-1).

The general interest of the conference concerns medical discourse in historical perspective across disciplinary fields and research areas, such as: historical linguistics; historical lexicology and lexicography; medicine in/and literature; history of science, medicine and medical thought; history and social function of medical institutions; popularization of medical thought; translation of medical texts; medicine and cultural attitudes; medicine and society.

Contributions are expected to focus on the period 1650-1950.

Language of submission and discussion: English or Italian.

Deadline for abstract submission: 28th February 2017.

Notification of acceptance: 31st March 2017.

Call for proposals

We are looking forward to receiving proposals for 30-minute presentations (20 min. + 10 min. discussion). Abstracts of about 250-300 words (excluding references) should be sent as e-mail attachments (doc, docx or rtf files) to by 28 February 2017. Abstracts should include: the title of the contribution; up to 5 keywords; a brief description of the planned study; and contact information (surname, name, institutional affiliation and position, etc.).

Possible topics include:

  • Medical terminology: the creation of specialised vocabulary/lexicon, lexicological and lexicographic approach
  • Medical discourse in literary texts, historical texts (social history, history of the discipline, history of medical institutions, etc.), specialized texts, personal/communal correspondence, personal/ professional records, handbooks, etc.
  • Professional and scientific discourse in the history of medicine
  • The origin of specialised medical journals (their professional/social function, their role in defining the discipline, etc.)
  • Medical practices and innovative approaches in the history of medicine
  • Epistemological changes in medical approach and practical issues
  • The role of the practitioner/physician in society
  • Relationship patient-practitioner (communicative needs, social impact, etc.) in historical perspective

Scientific committee: Giuseppe Armocida (Insubria), Michael Brown (Roehampton), Antonio De Francesco (Milan), Giuliana Garzone (Milan), Giovanni Iamartino (Milan), Clark Lawlor (Northumbria), Elisabetta Lonati (Milan), Paolo Mazzarello (Pavia), Laura Pinnavaia (Milan), Irma Taavitsainen (Helsinki).

Organising committee: Giovanni Iamartino, Elisabetta Lonati, Lucia Berti

For any enquiries regarding the programme, please contact Elisabetta Lonati ( For all general enquiries, please contact Lucia Berti ( or

CFP: Comics & Medicine Conference, “Access Points”, Seattle

CFP: 2017 Comics & Medicine Conference: Access Points

Location: Seattle Public Library Central Branch

Date: 15th – 17th June 2017

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

  • Rupert Kinnard created the first LGBTQ-identified African American comic strip characters in his groundbreaking series Cathartic Comics. His comics work—including his much anticipated memoir-in-progress LifeCapsule Project—spans all facets of his personal identity, from race, gender, and sexuality to classism, ageism, and disability. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the World Arts Foundation in 2013.
  • Georgia Webber is a comics artist, craniosacral therapist, meditation facilitator, and radio producer living in the cities of Hamilton and Toronto, Ontario. Her most notable comics series, Dumb, chronicles her severe vocal injury and ongoing (sometimes silent) recovery.
  • Hillary Chute is the author of Graphic Women: Life Narrative and Contemporary Comics (Columbia UP, 2010), Outside the Box: Interviews with Contemporary Cartoonists (University of Chicago Press, 2014), and Disaster Drawn: Visual Witness, Comics, and Documentary Form (Harvard University Press, 2016). She has also co-edited two journal special issues: Mfs: Modern Fiction Studies on “Graphic Narrative” (2006) and Critical Inquiry on “Comics & Media” (2014), and she is Associate Editor of Art Spiegelman’s MetaMaus (Pantheon, 2011).

Call for Papers:

This year’s Comics & Medicine theme is Access Points. We invite participants to consider accessibility as a crucial aspect linking comics and health. Comics—a medium broadly characterized as “accessible” because of its ability to reach diverse audiences and to provide a platform for marginalized voices—can make visible and reflect upon the urgent subject of health access. Comics can explore the issue of accessibility in past and current practices of health care and can point to imaginative solutions for extending and expanding health care. We invite the submission of a wide variety of abstracts focusing on health, medicine, and comics in any form (e.g. graphic novels and memoir, comic strips, manga, web comics) that examine or showcase topics including, but not limited to:

  • Comics depictions of disability
  • Visual depictions of systemic and structural inequities in health care and social determinants of health
  • Use of comics to provide health education for or about under-served communities
  • Comics representations of physical or geographical spaces related to the delivery of medical care
  • Collaborative comics projects that create access points between patients, healthcare providers, community organizations, and/or institutional stakeholders
  • Use of comics to access new understandings of bodily/mental states
  • Therapeutic uses of comics and cartooning
  • Use of comics to encourage conversations about accessible spaces/events
  • Innovative uses of comics to access diverse health experiences
  • Use of comics to visualize ideological and/or political boundaries and access to medical therapies
  • Comics and environmental health
  • Ethical implications of creating comics for patients, physicians, or institutions
  • Trends in, histories of, or the use of comics in health care and public health

Presentation Formats:

Lightning talks: 5-minute presentations with up to 15 slides. This concise format is meant to encourage submission of short presentations to share your work (e.g. comics, new research projects, new ideas).

Oral presentations: 15- to 20-minute presentations.

Panel discussions: 90-minute interviews or presentations by a panel of speakers

Working Groups: 90-minute sessions to discuss short or long term collaborative projects in graphic medicine or to lead focused discussion of books and/or issues related to the conference theme. If accepted, the planning committee can work with the proposer to establish an audience. Suggested topics include:

  • community outreach and comics
  • sexual health/violence prevention and comics
  • health education and comics
  • teaching and learning with graphic medicine

Workshops: 90-minute sessions intended to be “hands-on” interactive, creative workshops for participants who wish to obtain particular skills with regard to comics. Suggested topics include:

  • drawing for health 101
  • accessing personal stories
  • comics and storytelling
  • mini-comic tutorial 

Submission Process:

Proposal abstracts should not exceed 300 words and may be submitted in Word or PDF formats. Please include the following information in this order:

  • author(s)
  • affiliation
  • email address
  • phone number
  • title of abstract
  • body of abstract
  • sample images or web links to work being discussed
  • presentation format preference (see options above)
  • equipment needed (e.g. AV projection, whiteboard, easel, etc.)

Proposals should be submitted by 30th January 2017 to:

Abstracts will be peer-reviewed by an interdisciplinary selection committee. Notification of acceptance or rejection will be completed by the week of March 1st, 2017. While we cannot guarantee that presenters will receive their first choice of presentation format, we will attempt to honor preferences, and we will acknowledge the receipt of all proposals.

Please note: Presenters are responsible for session expenses (e.g. handouts and supplies) and personal expenses (travel, hotel, and registration fees). All presenters must register for the conference. Discounted rates and some limited scholarships will be available for students, artists, and others in need.

SSHM Postgraduate Conference, “Health Histories: The Next Generation”, Shanghai

Society for the Social History of Medicine Postgraduate Conference 2017

Health Histories: The Next Generation

Location: Shanghai University, China

Date: 12th – 13th October 2017

In cooperation with the University of Strathclyde and Shanghai University. Funded by the Wellcome Trust.

The Society for the Social History of Medicine periodically hosts an international conference for postgraduate students. The 2017 conference committee welcomes papers on any topic within the discipline of the social history of medicine and particularly encourage proposals for papers and panels that critically examine or challenge some aspect of the history of medicine and health. We welcome a range of methodological approaches, geographical regions, and time periods.

Proposals should be based on new research from postgraduate students currently registered in a University programme. Paper submissions should include a 250-word abstract, including five key words and a short (1-page) CV. Panel submissions should feature three papers (each with a 250-word abstract, including five key words, and a short CV), a chair, and a 100-word panel abstract.

For postgraduate students not currently funded through an existing fellowship or grant, funding is available to cover the costs associated with visas, travel, and accommodation in Shanghai. Upon confirmation of an accepted abstract, each postgraduate student is required to apply for a visa to travel to China. For more information about visas, please see

All postgraduate delegates must register (or already be registered) as members of the Society for the Social History of Medicine. For more information about SSHM student membership, please see

To propose an abstract, please visit:

To propose a panel, please visit:

Submissions and queries should be sent to Mrs Caroline Marley:

Conference Organizers:
Dr Stephen Mawdsley, University of Strathclyde Professor Yong-an Zhang, Shanghai University

Abstract Deadline: 10 March 2017

Medical Humanities Discussion Group, Glasgow (Semester 2)

The Medical Humanities Research Centre at the University of Glasgow is delighted to announce the programme for our discussion group for semester two. Please see details of the sessions below. The meetings will all take place in Room 418 in the East Quadrangle (directions available on the discussion group webpages), between 1-2pm. Tea/coffee and biscuits will be provided. All are welcome!

Wednesday 18th January

Session 1 – ‘Prostheses in Ancient Greece and Rome’

Speaker: Dr Jane Draycott (University of Glasgow)

This session will discuss Jane’s work to date about prosthesis manufacture and use in Classical Antiquity. 

Wednesday 15th February

Session 2 – History in Action: Social Psychiatry in Contemporary, Political Perspective

Speaker: Dr Matthew Smith (University of Strathclyde)

In this ‘post-truth’ era, it is increasingly important for historians to be assertive about the insights their research can offer to contemporary debates and issues, but determining exactly what ‘lessons’ are relevant and developing the skills to articulate them to the wider world is not easy.  Using my current research on the history of social psychiatry as a case study, my paper will discuss my ongoing attempts to distil conclusions that matter from my research into the history of health and medicine and communicate them to the broader public.

Wednesday 22nd March

Session 3 – “I’ve just got to keep myself together …”: The psycho-social geographies of living and coping with Social Anxiety Disorder’” 

Speaker: Louise Boyle (University of Glasgow)

This talk examines the psycho-social dynamics of living and coping with Social Anxiety Disorder; a condition marked by an intense and persistent fear of social interactions, situations and anticipated others. Drawing on lived accounts of anxious experiences from online interviews, I uncover the ways in which various situations, spaces and temporalities may be or become beneficial or detrimental to experiences of illness, health and wellbeing. By paying attention to the relational and embodied practices of coping and self-care, and the inherent spatialities of such practices, I explore how social anxieties necessitate an on-going formation and maintenance of psychological, social and material boundaries. I examine how processes of self-care and mechanisms of coping enable individuals to (re)order and (re)gain control of their socio-spatial surroundings but also ask to what extent are people further isolated and/or restricted by their attempts to manage and control their anxious experiences.


Glasgow History of Medicine Seminars, RCPSG

The Centre for the History of Medicine (part of the Institute of Health and Wellbeing at Glasgow University) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow invite you to a series of free seminars on medical history.

Venue: Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, Library Reading Room, 232-242 St Vincent St, Glasgow, G2 5RJ

Time: Coffee and biscuits from 5pm. Talks begin at 5:30pm

Booking: email or call 0141 221 6072. This event is free but please contact us to book as places are limited.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Dr Kenneth Collins (University of Glasgow and Hebrew University of Jerusalem), ‘Poles and Jews in Wartime Scotland: the Experience of Edinburgh’s Polish School of Medicine’

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Dr Salim Al-Gailani (University of Cambridge), ‘Vitamins on Trial: Folic Acid as a Technology of Reproduction and Public Health’

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Dr Iain Hutchison (University of Glasgow), ‘Philanthropy, Patriotism and Paediatric Nursing: Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children through five objects’

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Dr Claas Kirchhelle (University of Oxford), ‘Regulation and Resistance – a history of non-human antibiotic use in the US and UK (1949-2013)’

CFP: The Neurological Turn and Contemporary Fiction, AMH Conference, Keele

Association of Medical Humanities Annual Conference, Keele University, 28-30 June 2017.

 Panel session Call for Papers: The Neurological Turn and Contemporary Fiction (Thursday 29 June).

Panel Chair: Dr Nick Bentley (Keele University)

Narrative fiction has traditionally been viewed as a literary space that lends itself to the exploration of the psychological motivations and behaviours of characters with respect to the societies they inhabit and others with whom they form relationships. The use of interior monologue; the treatment of time, history and memory; and the rendering of social and cultural environments have allowed novelists to examine the psychological relationships between people and their inhabited worlds.

A recent trend in literary fiction, however, has begun to examine the way in which the neurological has moved to the centre of considerations about where human consciousness lies: the mind or the brain. The ‘neuro-novel’, as it has been dubbed by writers such as Marco Roth and others, represents this response in fiction to the neurological turn in the clinical sciences. Novels such as Ian McEwan’s Saturday, Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime and Jonathon Lethem’s Motherless Brooklyn have all included characters who suffer from clinical conditions (Huntingdon’s Disease, autism, Tourette’s syndrome).

This panel seeks 15-20 minute papers that explore fictional representations of such conditions and disorders. Topics that might be considered are:

  • the accuracy of the representation of mental health conditions in narrative fiction;
  • the way in which authors use narrative techniques and structures in order to convey the experience of mental health conditions;
  • the examination of individual conditions such as schizophrenia, personality disorders, autism etc.;
  • the representation of psychiatric and other mental health services
  • the use of mental health conditions as metaphors for exploring wider socio-political concerns, for example, schizophrenia in Chuck Palahniuk’s Fight Club;
  • papers on individual novels and/or authors that speak to the theme of the panel.

Please email abstracts to the panel chair Dr Nick Bentley, by 1st February 2017.

More information can be found at the Conference website.

Postdoctoral Fellowships in Medical Humanities and Social Sciences, Leeds

The University of Leeds has been awarded a grant of £1.25m over 5 years from the Wellcome Trust ISSF to support biomedical and related research, which has been matched by an equal investment by the University. A major component of this funding will support early career researchers in order to enable them to realise their potential, and position themselves for competitive external Fellowship applications. We therefore seek applications from candidates at either the latter stages of their PhD work, or after one or two post-doctoral positions, dependent on the type of Fellowship envisioned. Previous rounds have supported researchers from Medical Humanities and Social Sciences, as well as the wider academic areas of Medicine and Health.

These awards will cover both salary costs and a contribution towards consumables, aligned to the needs of the proposed work. Applications are invited from any Faculty, but applicants should be working within the Wellcome Trust remit.

Applications will be considered on an annual basis. For the 2017 round, applicants should complete the appropriate proforma by 23rd January 2017. The ISSF Management Committee will then triage the applications and invite shortlisted candidates for interview during the week commencing 13 February 2017 (TBC). The interview will consist of a short (5 minute) presentation by the candidate, followed by questions from the panel, which will comprise a subset of the Management Committee representing the breadth of academic interests within the ISSF portfolio.

Each award will normally be up to £50K, and applicants should provide a detailed justification for the funds requested. It is expected that these awards will normally run for a maximum of 12 months. If awarded, an appropriate timescale will be agreed and any funds remaining unspent at the end will be withheld for re-allocation in subsequent funding rounds. Awards will be available immediately, or may be taken up at any time during the calendar year following the award, dependent on your current funding position. We invite applications from Leeds-based individuals who are planning to apply for external Fellowships to remain in Leeds, or external candidates intending to move to Leeds.

Medical Humanities applicants can make informal enquiries or request advice about their eligibility for the scheme by contacting Prof Stuart Murray. For any further information on how to apply, please visit the University of Leeds website.

CFP: ‘Spectacular Evidence: Theatres of the Observed Mind’, London

Location: The event will take place at ArtsAdmin in London.

Date: Friday 24th March 2017, starting at 11am.

Deadline for abstracts: 5pm, Tuesday 10th January 2017.

Spectacular Evidence: Theatres of the Observed Mind is a one-day symposium that draws upon histories of madness, its exhibition and how it has been staged as cultural performance. Spectacular Evidence will also explore the behaviours and ‘performances’ acted out in the relationship between patient and physician. Proposals with a connection to the subject area of the symposium are invited from professionals, staff, researchers and research students.

Convened by Zoë Mendelson, in partnership with Camberwell, Chelsea, Wimbledon Graduate School, this event includes performances, screenings and talks. It brings together representatives from visual arts, medicine and critical theory to produce contemporary psycho-cultural readings of performances integral to psychiatric space, practice and histories.

Zoë is an artist whose work straddles Fine Art and Medical Humanities, engaging with disorder as a culturally produced phenomenon, in parallel to its clinical counterpart. She is currently Course Leader for BA Fine Art Painting at Wimbledon College of Arts.

Confirmed contributors include:

  • Zoe Beloff – Artist. Her exhibition The Coney Island Amateur Psychoanalytic Society celebrated the centennial of Freud’s visit to Coney Island
  • Dr Anna Harpin – Author of Performance, Madness and Psychiatry: Isolated Acts (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014)
  • Dr Joanne Morra – Reader in Art History and Theory, Central Saint Martins. Founder and principal editor, Journal of Visual Culture. Morra’s recent book, Inside the Freud Museum (forthcoming IB Tauris)
  • Florence Peake – Artist. Her performance practice combines her extensive training in dance and background in painting
  • Dr Michelle Williams Gamaker – Artist, filmmaker and collaborator with Mieke Bal on the film A Long History of Madness (2011)

Proposals are welcome from across disciplines and should have a connection to the subject area covered by the symposium. They can be for traditional presentations, performative contributions or variations on the lecture form. Presentations should be no more than 20 minutes in duration.

The deadline for proposals is 17.00, Tuesday 10th January 2017. Please submit here.

For more information please contact Zoë Mendelson.