Nostalgias: Visualising Longing
A two-day conference in the Winter Gardens Margate, UK, on November 9 - 10, 2013
Deadline for abstracts 15 June 2013
This peer-reviewed conference explores the multiple concepts of nostalgia and how longing manifests itself within
contemporary culture. The conference aims to examine, analyse and interpret the complexities of nostalgia and
nostalgic sensibilities within art, media and material culture. We invite submissions that consider how nostalgia is
represented within the interdisciplinary range of art and media based practices (photography, moving image,
sound, new media, fashion, fine art and design). What is the visual vocabulary of nostalgic emotion?
How important are aesthetics to the nostalgic image? Do we long for more tangibility in this digital age?
Nostalgia is often viewed as a form of yearning for another place or time; it has been identified as a way of
managing loss, a marketing device and a tool of propaganda by making reference to the past as a means
to shape the future. Nostalgia has different functions, it is used to evoke, influence and activate a range of
emotional responses, affecting all areas of contemporary life. Yet, nostalgia is as much about fantasy as it is about
memory. Recently, the cultural function of nostalgia has been a subject of critical debate. How is nostalgia used,
experienced and referenced in relation to images in art and media? What role does nostalgia have in modern
society? How do contemporary attitudes encourage nostalgia?
Possible topics could include but are not limited to:
The multiple readings of nostalgias
The impact of nostalgia on culture
Vintage and commodification
Longing for home; travel and memory
Aesthetics of nostalgia
Political uses of longing
From sentimentality to nostalgia and melancholy
Touch, smell and sound evoking the past
Photographic history as nostalgia
Narrating nostalgia; fantasy and longing
The conference will take place at the Winter Gardens Margate, Kent, UK on 9 and 10 November 2013, with an
opening reception on 8 November. Selected papers will be presented at the conference and may be included
in a planned peer reviewed special issue of the journal Photography and Culture (Bloomsbury). The conference
weekend will have a programme of associated events and exhibitions.
Submission guidelines - Papers
This conference invites submissions that explore nostalgia in its interdisciplinary sense, embracing ideas and
visualisations of nostalgia and longing. We welcome submissions that assess contemporary attitudes and
experiences of nostalgia through material culture, art and media.
Deadline for abstracts: 15 June 2013
To submit a proposal for a paper please send an abstract (300-500 words), a 1- page CV, five key words and
a short biographical note (100 words)
Send to: firstname.lastname@example.org
From the submitted abstracts we will make a final selection (subject to peer review process) to be presented
at the conference. Successful applicants will be notified by 1 August and the full-length papers of 20
minutes will be required by 1 October 2013.