Institute of Advanced Studies



IAS Book Launch: Short Films from a Small Nation - Danish Informational Film 1935-1965

Start: Mar 28, 2018 6:00:00 PM
End: Mar 28, 2018 8:00:00 PM

For three decades, state-sponsored short filmmaking educated Danish citizens, promoted Denmark to the world, and shaped the careers of renowned directors like Carl Th. Dreyer. This book, written by Dr C. Claire Thomson and published by Edinburgh University Press in January 2018, traces how Danish shorts on topics including social welfare, industry, art and architecture were commissioned, funded, produced and reviewed from the inter-war period to the 1960s. Examining the life cycle of a representative selection of films, and discussing their preservation and mediation in the digital age, this book presents a detailed case study of how informational cinema is shaped by, and indeed shapes, its cultural, political and technological contexts.

'Jews and Ukrainians: A Millennium of Co-Existence' - Book launch and talk by Paul Robert Magocsi, University of Toronto

Start: Apr 16, 2018 7:00:00 PM
End: Apr 16, 2018 9:00:00 PM

There is much that ordinary Ukrainians do not know about Jews, and much that ordinary Jews do not know about Ukrainians. As a result, those Jews and Ukrainians who may care about their respective ancestral heritages usually view each other through distorted stereotypes, misperceptions, and biases. This book sheds new light on controversial moments of Ukrainian-Jewish relations and argues that the historical experience in Ukraine not only divided ethnic Ukrainians and Jews, but also brought them together.

Revisiting Sovereignty in Europe? The Catalan Crisis in Context

Start: Apr 17, 2018 11:00:00 AM
End: Apr 17, 2018 5:00:00 PM

The ongoing crisis in Catalonia is the product of a very particular legal, political and indeed party-political context. The latest vote on independence called by Catalan authorities on 1 October 2017 – declared illegal by Spain’s constitutional court and leading both to a unilateral declaration of independence and a subsequent suspension of regional autonomy – has brought it to international attention. Yet the complex nature of the case, which is crucial to any discussion of its political future and to understanding the lessons it offers to similar causes in Europe, is often downplayed.

The Science of Naples: Making Knowledge in Italy’s Pre-eminent City, 1500-1700

Start: Apr 20, 2018 9:00:00 AM
End: Apr 20, 2018 6:00:00 PM

In the early modern period, Naples was one of the most important capitals in Europe. As an international centre of learning, Naples encouraged debates on natural philosophy and science which promoted intellectual networking and the transfer of knowledge. Operating within the university, academies, hospitals, monasteries and private spaces, local scientists researched a variety of topics that included medicine, surgery, anatomy (both human and animal), the art of barbers, and pharmacology.

Baltic Symposium 2018: The Baltic States in a Changing Europe

Start: Apr 20, 2018 9:00:00 AM
End: Apr 20, 2018 7:00:00 PM

The IAS is delighted to share details of 'Baltic Symposium 2018: The Baltic States in a Changing Europe', which is co-hosted by our colleagues in the UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES).  It is the 9th Baltic Symposium organised by the Baltic Council in Great Britain and the Embassies of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in London.

UCL Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition 2018

Start: Apr 24, 2018 3:00:00 PM
End: Apr 24, 2018 5:30:00 PM

Calling all PhD students in A&H, SHS and SSEES to present their research projects at the 3MT competition – other faculties can find more information here.

Performance, Trauma and Victimhood

Start: Apr 26, 2018 9:00:00 AM
End: Apr 26, 2018 8:00:00 PM

This interdisciplinary conference explores the role of performance and performativity in the mediation of traumatic effects. With a view to interrogating traditional conceptions of traumatic unrepresentability, it invites papers that explore the potential of performance for altering perceptions of space, time and causality, particularly through the materiality of the audience-artwork encounter. In addition, the conference will ask how victim identities are actively constructed, and ways in which enactments of suffering and victimhood might unsettle or incite unsustainable identifications of the reader/viewer. It also invites participants to address how personal histories and traumatic memory are performed in the medical encounter, and in public narratives surrounding medicine and psychiatry.

Art + Activism: Queer & Feminist Visibilities

Start: Apr 27, 2018 12:00:00 AM
End: Apr 27, 2018 12:00:00 AM

There is a long tradition of employing images and performance as a mode of activism. Feminist and queer art practices aimed at reclaiming public space for bodies and discourses otherwise excluded from mainstream politics and culture have played a crucial role in defining art as a mode of activism. 

IAS Lies: Medieval Fiction and Its Contraries

Start: May 18, 2018 4:00:00 PM
End: May 18, 2018 6:00:00 PM

The IAS is delighted to welcome Dr Julie Orlemanski, Assistant Professor in the Department of English at the University of Chicago, who will be giving this seminar as part of the Lies research theme.

IAS Book Launch: The Painter's Touch - Boucher, Chardin, Fragonard by Ewa Lajer-Burcharth

Start: May 18, 2018 6:00:00 PM
End: May 18, 2018 8:00:00 PM

What can be gained from considering a painting not only as an image but also a material object? How does the painter’s own experience of the process of making matter for our understanding of both the painting and its maker? The Painter’s Touch addresses these questions to offer a radical reinterpretation of three paradigmatic French painters of the eighteenth century. 

Parenting Culture, Childhood, and Adult-child Relations in the Contemporary Age

Start: May 23, 2018 9:15:00 AM
End: May 23, 2018 4:30:00 PM

Whilst 'Parenting Culture' and 'Childhood' are now well-established fields of multi-disciplinary social science scholarship, so far, the tensions and resonances between these two bodies of work have not been significantly explored, particularly in global contexts. Taking ‘adult-child relations’ as the locus of this comparison, this symposium, organised by Charlotte Faircloth and Rachel Rosen (based in the Department of Social Science, University College London) brings together novel contributions from scholars working in both of these fields, and who are interested in creating connections between them.

UCL IAS Lies: 'Trust Me' - A Symposium on the Language of Medical Expertise and Imposture in English, 1400-1900

Start: May 25, 2018 9:00:00 AM
End: May 25, 2018 7:00:00 PM

‘Trust Me’ is an interdisciplinary symposium on the long history of medical publicity. How did medical practitioners craft a language to cultivate confidence in their knowledge and abilities in English? Our conversation will trace how the assurances (and overassurances) of expertise—expressed in mountebanks’ medicine shows, print medical advertising, bedside manner, and training literature—adapted to new paradigms of knowledge, media technologies, and regulatory regimes to win the trust of patients and authorities. We will explore the history of that language, as well as the forms of its dissemination in literary and public culture: how did this language circulate as a dramatic genre, a political problem, or style of speech? In this, we will follow this set of professional medical practices as it was translated into social life and the popular imagination, and how these practices shaped broader cultural attitudes about medical expertise and the people who claimed it.

IAS Book Launch: Derek Jarman’s Medieval Modern - Bob Mills in conversation with Mark Turner

Start: May 25, 2018 6:00:00 PM
End: May 25, 2018 8:00:00 PM

Derek Jarman had a lifelong appreciation of medieval culture. This is the first book to explore those interests. Taking in Jarman’s major features, as well as unrealised screenplays and short experimental films, the book considers Jarman's engagement with medieval poetry; with saints and mystics from Joan of Arc to Julian of Norwich; and with numerous paintings, buildings and objects from this so-called ‘middle’ time. Organised around several key themes — periodisation, anachronism, ruins and wandering — the book also asks what happens when (with Jarman, but also more broadly) we think the categories ‘medieval’ and ‘modern’ together.  Read more about it here.

Chinese Astronomical Systems In The South Pacific?: Conforming Earth to Heaven through the reaches of the Austronesian Expansion

Start: Jun 4, 2018 10:00:00 AM
End: Jun 4, 2018 12:30:00 PM

We are pleased to share an invitation to this UCL Centre for Critical Heritage Studies (CCHS) event.  This presentation is a progress report on a comparison between a representative South Pacific social system which Professor Fred Damon (University of Virginia) has been studying since 1973 and a synthetic view of China.

IAS Book Launch: Bruno Munari - The Lightness of Art

Start: Jun 12, 2018 6:00:00 PM
End: Jun 12, 2018 8:00:00 PM

Dubbed a ‘Leonardo Da Vinci and Peter Pan’ of the modern world, Bruno Munari played a key role in practices as wide ranging as concrete abstraction, kinetic art, multiples and xerograph art. He also gained international recognition in industrial and graphic design, through signature objects such as his Falkland lamp (1964) and Abitacolo (1971), advertising material for firms including Campari, and editorial work for Domus and publishing houses such as Einaudi and Bompiani. He left an indelible mark as a design theorist (among his many volumes, Design as Art appeared in English with Penguin in 1971) and as a children’s author and educator, through the artistic laboratories he toured globally from the mid-1970s.

Octagon Friday Forum: Noise

Start: Jun 15, 2018 9:00:00 AM
End: Jun 15, 2018 5:00:00 PM

In Image Matters: Archive, Photography, and the African Diaspora in Europe (2012), Tina M. Campt analyses family archives through the conceptual frameworks of sound and music. In a critique of the notion of ‘transparency’, Campt argues that photographs should be ‘listened to’, instead of simply being looked at, in order to understand their broader cultural meanings, translations and articulations. Incorporating sound and music within her visual analysis, Campt not only succeeds in shortcutting the ‘self-evident’ dimension of photography, but also highlights continuity and breaks within lens-based practices, as well as within a broader socio-historical ‘harmony’.

IAS Book Launch: On the Couch - A Repressed History of the Analytic Couch from Plato to Freud

Start: Jun 22, 2018 6:00:00 PM
End: Jun 22, 2018 8:00:00 PM

The peculiar arrangement of the psychoanalyst’s office for an analytic session seems inexplicable. The analyst sits in a chair out of sight while the patient lies on a couch facing away. It has been this way since Freud, although, as Nathan Kravis points out in On the Couch, this practice is grounded more in the cultural history of reclining posture than in empirical research.