In general, Museums have taken to social media with the ultimate goal to engage the public with their objects and collections. The purpose is foot-fall; the more people that walk through the doors of the museum the better. Social media helps to promote the organisation, open up a dialogue and discussion with the public, and enables curators to talk about the things that they do in an open, informal public environment. Continue reading →
This workshop will bring together researchers in aesthetics, philosophy of language and linguistics to consider a topic significant to all these domains: aesthetic adjectives, such as ‘beautiful’, ‘ugly’, ‘elegant’ and ‘unified’, and their role in disagreements about taste. Although theorists working on the semantics of adjectives have developed sophisticated theories about gradable adjectives generally and have explored the closely related class of adjectives known as predicates of ‘personal taste’ (e.g., ‘tasty’ and ‘fun’), they have tended to avoid studying aesthetic adjectives, which play a central role in the evaluation of art. At the same time, philosophical aestheticians have a longstanding interest in the nature and use of aesthetic adjectives: consider, for example, the traditional project of defining ‘beautiful’, ‘sublime’ and ‘ugly’. In the contemporary context, Frank Sibley’s influential argument to the effect that the applications of aesthetic terms are never solely determined by their non-aesthetic conditions has instigated a significant research programme devoted to exploring those terms and their use in ordinary and critical discourse (Sibley 1959; Kivy 1973). To take another example, Kendall Walton’s seminal work on the role played by categories in aesthetic judgments raised the question of whether gradable adjectives such as ‘tall’ or ‘small’ might serve as models for understanding aesthetic adjectives (Walton 1970). But despite the interest in aesthetic language in general and aesthetic adjectives in particular, philosophical aestheticians have been notably resistant to engaging with the current theories of the semantics of adjectives that are found in linguistics and philosophy of language. The aim of this workshop is to help remedy these lacunae by enhancing the dialogue between aesthetics on the one hand, and philosophy of language and linguistics on the other. Continue reading →
The image of London on screen is as old as film itself, with the city’s landmarks becoming increasingly familiar to audiences around the world. This conference explores the use of ‘real’ streets and buildings – which continues today and includes some London University premises – as well as faked and studio-built settings. It will reflect how digital and mobile media have given new impetus to the mapping of filmic locations, together with the longstanding topographic enthusiasm of amateur film historians, and perspectives drawn from the theory of visual and spatial representation. Continue reading →
A lot of my life over the last year or so has been taken up with festivals. That’s not to say that this year has been a hedonistic one (far from it), but rather that both my working life and my academic research has increasingly revolved around the planning, conceptualising, and programming of various forms of festivals—including the forthcoming national festival of the humanities Being Human (15th-23rd November 2014). It seems like a good time therefore to put down a few personal thoughts about festivals and why they can be a good thing for researchers and ‘the academy’ to interact with.
First, I should say that I have not historically been that much of a festival person. I have never been to Glastonbury, don’t like camping, and generally prefer a day in the library to a night traipsing round a festival site. That said, however, I have always been what you might call a festival sympathiser: interested in the conceptual and aesthetic apparatus of festivals without actually getting mud on my boots. This may be why the festivals that I have been involved with, and interested by, have been those that actively try to challenge and rethink the idea of what festivals should be. Continue reading →
A local history workshop organised by British Association for Local History (BALH) and the Institute of Commonwealth Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London.
We are connected to the First World War through our family and community histories, and through the war’s impact on British and other societies. The war provided opportunities to go to new places, engage in different activities and meet people not encountered in peacetime. What were people’s experiences of different places, living under different conditions, and how did they engage with different cultures?
This is an introduction to researching war experience and its legacy: individual, family and community perspectives through the prism of the local, national and international. Continue reading →