Pasts without History


Pasts without History: Politics and the Practical Past

21-22 June 2016

Centre for the Philosophy of History

and the Public History MA Programme

St Mary’s University

The symposium will explore how past narratives are used outside of a strictly academic context: in museums, community archives, on Facebook, by artists, novelists and activists. The aim is to decenter elite or sedimented forms of historicisation, to consider alternative narrations of our pasts and how these can and are used to interrogate our presents and imagine better futures. What is at stake is not just a matter of sharing authority over the past, but in some circumstances wresting it back from dominant interests who exclude voices, perspectives and narratives from the field of historical knowledge. Our aim is to show that non-institutional, vernacular ways of producing ‘truths’ about the past can be a good starting point for discussions of what to do in the present – and one that is based on more inclusive understandings of whose voices count in the debate.

There will be a variety of presentations by artists, activists, archivists and novelists including short films, an art installation, photographs, discussions, introductions to alternative archives etc.

For abstracts see here

Participants include: Paul Antick, Helen Bendon, Martin Davies, Jean Debney, Gisele lecker de Almeida, Joe Iosbaker, Jelena Juresa, Pete Kyle, Bernard Regan, David Saville Рfor short bios see here.

Everyone is welcome

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Check back soon for further details