CFP: First Interdisciplinary Historical Fictions Research Network Conference

Deadline:  1 September 2015

Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, England

27-28 February 2016

Keynote Speaker: Professor Ansgar Nünning of Universitat Giessen
(Literature & American Studies).

Conference fee: £180; concession £140 (graduate students; or on proof of
income below £10k).
Accommodation: tbc

This is a key moment for the study of historical fictions: there is a
rising critical recognition of the texts and the convergence of lines of
theory in the philosophy of history, narratology, popular literature,
historical narratives of national and cultural identity, and
cross-disciplinary approaches to narrative constructions of the past.
Narrative constructions of the past constitute a powerful discursive
system for the production of cognitive and ideological representations
of identity, agency, and social function, and for the negotiation of
conceptual relationships and charged tensions between the complexity of
societies in time and the teleology of lived experience. The licences of
fiction, especially in mass culture, define a space of thought in which
the pursuit of narrative forms of meaning is permitted to slip the
chains of sanctioned historical truths to explore the deep desires and
dreams that lie beneath all constructions of the past. Historical
fictions measure the gap between the pasts we are permitted to know and
those we wish to know: the interaction of the meaning-making narrative
drive with the narrative-resistant nature of the past.
Historical fictions can be understood as an expanded mode of
historiography. Scholars in literary, visual, historical and
museum/re-creation studies have long been interested in the construction
of the fictive past, understanding it as a locus for ideological
We welcome paper proposals from Archeology, Literature, Media, Art
History, Musicology, Reception Studies, Museum Studies, Recreation and
others. We welcome paper proposals across historical periods, with
ambitious, high-quality, inter-disciplinary approaches and new
methodologies that will support research into larger trends and which
will lead to more theoretically informed understandings of the mode
across historical periods, cultures and languages.
We aim to create a disciplinary core, where researchers can engage in
issues of philosophy and methodology and generate a collective discourse
around historical fictions in a range of media and across period
Paper proposals consisting of a title and abstract of no more than 250
words should be submitted to:

Twitter: @HistoricalFic