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Week 0 Updates
OCCT's Hilary term card is filled with some truly excellent events! The Discussion Group is in rude health, and will again be structured as an experiment in comparative reading out of context. The Fiction and Other Minds seminar will explore the theme of “Affective Transformations”, focusing on the work of philosopher Giovanna Colombetti. OCCT is also hosting Journeys in Translation, a poetry reading and discussion. At the event 14 poems from the anthology Over Land, Over Sea: Poems for Those Seeking Refuge (Five Leaves Publications, 2015) will be read in English and in translation. For more info about our upcoming events (and there are more still to be confirmed!), go to our website.
OCCT Review’s latest piece, reviewed by Lyndsay Miller, is available here.
Events and CFPs
1.Multilingual Digital Authorship
Lancaster University, 8-9 March 2018
The inaugural symposium of The Creative Web of Languages (MEITS flexible funding project)
Call for Papers
The World Wide Web is commonly perceived as the ultimate tool of homogenizing culture through dominant platforms such as Google and Facebook and consequently as the major culprit in the loss of ground of local cultures. Digital cultures are in reality plural, however, in terms of both form and language, and they not only continue pre-digital traditions through new modes of expression and in a new space for creativity in specific languages, but also invite us to rethink the nature and role of cultural heritage, language, identity, and their relationships today. At the same time, the web remains a fluid and open space that allows for the mixing and cross-fertilization of cultures more than any other previous mode of interaction. Artists and authors who engage in digital creativity often live in and between different cultures and languages that feed into their works; they translate their own or others’ works; engage with audiences across cultures; and are critical of dominant platforms and discourses, which they often hijack. The digital has never been neutral, as Alexandra Saemmer notes, and creatively engaging with it entails questioning established modes of thinking and writing as well as the relationship between language, tradition, and identity. The work of multilingual authors and artists such as Gregory Chatonsky, Alexandra Saemmer, Serge Bouchardon, Canan Marasligil, Lou Sarabadzic, María Mencía, Guillaume Vissac, or Belén Gache, to mention only a few, well illustrate the centrality of these concerns to born digital literature across languages. The importance of the linguistic identity and hybridity of electronic literature is still largely unexplored, however.
This symposium will be the inaugural event of The Creative Web of Languages, a two-year project addressing these questions, funded by the ‘Multilingualism: Empowering Individuals, Transforming Societies’ AHRC Open World Research Initiative (www.meits.org). The project aims to bring together researchers and artists across languages and specialisms to enable a rich dialogue and a comparative approach. The symposium benefits from additional support from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the Department of Languages and Cultures of Lancaster University, and will happen in partnership with the Electronic Literature Organization (https://eliterature.org/).
Serge Bouchardon; Canan Marasligil; María Mencía; Alexandra Saemmer; Lou Sarabadzic; Claire Larsonneur (Paris 8); Emanuela Patti (Royal Holloway); Claire Taylor (Liverpool University)
200-word proposals for 20-minute papers are invited on digital authors and creative works with a focus on the role of language and languages. Contributions discussing ongoing or completed web-based projects, including blogs, vlogs, microblogs, or social media experiments are particularly welcome. Topics may include, but need not be limited to:
• The coexistence or mixing of languages and cultures in digital works and projects
• Linguistic and cultural identity in and through digital creativity
• Creative web-based communities across languages
• Linguistic border crossing in digital works and projects
• Translation and self-translation of digital works
• The creative web and the politics of language / language and the politics of the creative web
Postgraduate students and early career scholars are particularly encouraged to submit proposals. Two small bursaries for postgraduate speakers will be available to help with the travel and accommodation costs.
Please send your proposal by Friday the 2nd of February to the organizer, Erika Fülöp at email@example.com
2. Film Screening with Director: Jenny Lu’s The Receptionist (2017)
2018/Jan/19 Friday 7-9:30 PM Shulman Auditorium, Queen’s College, Oxford
Supported by: Oxford Chinese Studies Society, International Gender Studies Centre at Lady Margaret Hall, Queen’s College MCR
To offer Oxford students the warmest welcome back to Hilary Term, we have invited Director Jenny Lu盧謹明, to show her feature film The Receptionist 接線員 (2017) (bilingual subtitles).
This bilingual film is the first UK-Taiwanese film collaboration and tells the story of Tina, a literature graduate living in London, who takes up work as a receptionist in an illegal massage parlour. As she settles into the role, she gains a unique and challenging insight into the lives of the Asian women who work there.
This event will be of interest to those of you who work on contemporary Britain, Asian diaspora, Chinese and Taiwanese culture, film studies, gender studies, translation studies, and race and racism.
Book tickets at
Link to the Facebook event:
3. Open weekly seminar this Hilary Term, "Reading the Classical Past: Cavafy, Seferis and beyond", which addresses some current motions at the interface between Classical Reception Studies and Modern Greek Studies. We are hoping that participants of all levels, including undergraduate student, from Classics, Modern Languages, and adjacent disciplines, will find this of interest. There will be talks or short introductions by speakers, and hopefully a good amount of time each week will be taken up by discussion. Everyone is very welcome.
Reading the Classical Past: Cavafy, Seferis and beyond
Hilary Term 2018
Conveners: Dimitris Papanikolaou and Constanze Guthenke
Monday, Weeks 1-8
First Floor Lecture Room 2, 47, Wellington Square
Week 1: 15 January
The nation and its Classics: Reception Studies and Modern Greek Studies now (Constanze Guthenke and Dimitris Papanikolaou)
Week 2: 22 January
'Trojans': Cavafy and the archives of the present [with a screening of C.Giannaris’s Trojans (1989)] (Dimitris Papanikolaou)
Week 3: 29 January
Cavafoucault. Antiquity, sexuality and the account of the self (Dimitris Papanikolaou)
Week 4: 5 February
Seferis's Classicism (Constanze Guthenke)
Week 5: 12 February
The Parthenon in Poetry (Liana Giannakopoulou)
Week 6: 19 February
'I woke up with this marble head in my hands': Myth, Temporality, Politics (Alexis Radisoglou)
Week 7: 26 February
Rewriting tragedy on a prison island: Aris Alexandrou's Antigone (1951) (Gonda Van Steen)
Week 8: 5 March
(Classical) Greece and postmodernism (Eleftheria Ioannidou)
This lecture series supported by an Onassis Foundation special grant.
4. Posthuman Transcultural Memory in European Fiction and Visual Culture
Room 246, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
Thursday 1 February 2018, 14:30-16:30
Speakers: Hannah Kershaw (York); Matthew Mild; David Lomas (Manchester)
From the natural sciences to anthropology, from literary theory to medicine, the posthuman has been called upon to innovate disciplinary discourses by articulating what had been unthinkable, unsayable, and untheorisable: the possible obsolescence of the very subject who formulated them.
This seminar will discuss posthuman transcultural memory in British Muslim fiction, migrant German and Italian fiction, and French visual culture. The three panelists will draw on the 2017 Utrecht ACLA posthuman seminar in their overview on transcultural memory and posthuman studies. Because “humanity” is never neutral or abstract but always embodied within specifications of gender, sexuality, class, race, ability, an analysis of the posthuman can productively engage all of these categories. The posthuman opens a space for contamination and intersectionality. This can be fruitfully applied both to ways of conceiving, impersonating, and representing subjects and to ways of producing, organising, and disseminating remembrance
All are welcome to attend this free event. Space is limited so please book in advancehttps://modernlanguages.sas.ac.uk/events/event/12692