CFP: Paris, Boston, Washington D.C.

CFP: Medical Humanities, Health and Disease in Culture, Washington DC

Popular Culture and American Culture Associations, National Conference

Washington DC, 27th-30th March 2013

Deadline: 30th November 2012

The “Medical Humanities: Health and Disease in Culture” area for the 2013 Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association meeting in Washington, DC invites presentation proposals related to the portrayal of health, illness and health care in the discourses of popular and American culture.  Proposals representing perspectives in the humanities and the arts (e.g., film, history, literature, visual arts), social sciences (e.g., anthropology, cultural studies, sociology) and mass media (e.g., print or electronic journalism) in historical or contemporary contexts are welcome.

Individual and full panel proposals are considered. For full panel proposals (generally four persons) please include titles and abstracts for all participants.

Subject areas might include but are not limited to:

  • stories of illness from patient and health practitioner perspectives in novels, short stories, poetry, memoirs, graphic comics, etc., discussed in sociocultural, historical or political contexts
  • historical and contemporary narratives of chronic illness as represented in films, television, advertising, news media, and social media
  • historical and contemporary representations of illness (including stigmatization) in popular culture genres, the education of health professionals, and health care practice literature
  • disability narratives in literature, history, and popular culture
  • representations of health institutions or health practitioners in historical and contemporary perspectives
  • health care reform discourse  (e.g.,  public debate over national health insurance in electoral politics, disability rights,  “patient-centered” health care, medical homes, health care access, health disparities, electronic medical records)
  • pharmaceuticals and the pharmaceutical industry  (e.g., drug/prescription/OTC use and misuse; popular perceptions; promotion and marketing; drug development or regulation; clinical trials)
  • historical and contemporary perspectives on public health “threats,” e.g.,   obesity, smoking, addictions, antibiotic resistance, radiation
  • historical and contemporary representations of health promotion through diet, exercise, personal or domestic hygiene, positive psychology
  • historical and contemporary narratives of epidemics, pandemics, emerging and re-emerging diseases (e.g., cholera, polio, malaria, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDs, flu) in literature, television, and film
  • global public health infrastructure issues (e.g., access to water and safety; famine and food safety; vaccine access; control of environmental factors that contribute to illness; civil unrest)
  • representations of the globalization of disease (e.g.,  medical and dental tourism; national/international governmental public health organizations or non-governmental organizations (NGOs); global disease surveillance; public health “preparedness” efforts; “natural” or “man-made” disasters)
  • panels on medical humanities teaching strategies or the reading/performance of creative works

Proposals of 200-250 words must be submitted online at the PCAACA website:

Area Co-Chairs:

David E. Tanner, david.tanner(@)

Carol-Ann Farkas carol-ann.farkas(@)



CFP: Health, Mental Health, and Literature, Boston College

Boston College, Boston, MA, 9th March 2013

Deadline: 15th January 2013.

The Boston College English Graduate Conference seeks abstracts for papers that consider the intersection between health, mental health, and literature.

Considering recent interdisciplinary developments in the field of Medical Humanities, we are interested in exploring the ways in which literature and other creative arts have attempted to represent or otherwise understand health, which is so often analyzed from a clinical or scientific perspective. We seek papers that work to synthesize clinical approaches and literary approaches to the mind and body. What can be gained by merging literary and scientific analyses?

Possible topics might include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • Representations of mental illness in literature, pop culture, or historical texts
  • The role of rhetoric, language, and creativity in medical writing
  • Representations of the healthy or sick body in literature
  • The ethics of “diagnosing” literary or historical figures
  • Literature’s role in normalizing, otherizing, or popularizing mental or physical ailments
  • Literary analyses of psychological writing or scientific writing

Joshua Wolf Shenk, author of the critically acclaimed book Lincoln’s Melancholy, will deliver our keynote address.

Our conference will be held on Saturday 9th March 2013 at Boston College. Boston College is located in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts and is easily accessible to downtown Boston. See for additional campus information.

For questions and submissions, please contact Katie Daily-Bruckner at dailym(@) Abstracts are due by 15th January 2013.



Psychiatric patients and treatments on screen: militantism, care and processes of subjectivation

Paris, 5th-6th Dec 2012 

Psychiatric patients and treatments on screen is an International conference organized by Nausica Zaballos (EHESS Paris), Jean-François Coffin (Paris V Descartes, Centre Alexandre Koyré), Alessandro Manna (IRIS).

The aim of the conference is to provide the opportunity for scholars from different fields of research to study how the cinematic representation of psychiatric patients and treatments evolved over the last half of the twentieth century. A special emphasis will be put on tracing back the emergence of new types of subjectivity and intimate narratives that advocate for the defence of specific therapeutic practices and that illustrate the appropriation of cinematographic tools by militant groups and activists.

The full programme is available here.

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