Call for Presentations

16th Global Conference

pehwlogo

Wednesday 18th March – Friday 20th March 2015
Lisbon, Portugal


Call for Presentations

Does evil exist? Should ‘evil’ exist in the 21st Century? The newspapers use it when talking about children who have been abused or parents who murder their babies. Political language splits into tensions of good versus evil, the forces of light versus the forces of dark, particularly in relation to situations of war or terrorism. Films attract huge audiences at the cinema who are looking to be frightened or scared by supernatural demons, possessions, witches and the malignant power of evil and evil beings. And when confronted by people and events which we cannot fathom or understand, all of us seem to revert to the language of evil to point to ‘something more’ than it being just ‘wrong’ or ‘bad’. But what is this ‘something more’? Is it real? Just an illusion? A convenience? A cop out? Or does evil still have a role to play today?

Everyone – academics and artists, NGOs and performers, practitioners, clergy, journalists, therapists, nurses, doctors, social workers – has something to say about anything that might be considered “evil” through any one of a hundred-plus prisms. This inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary conference seeks to examine and explore issues surrounding evil and human wickedness. In wrestling with evil(s) we are confronted with a multi-layered phenomenon which invites people from all disciplines, professions and vocations to come together in dialogue and wrestle with questions that cross the boundaries of the intellectual, the emotional and the personal. Underlying these efforts there is the sense that in grappling with evil we are in fact grappling with questions and issues of our own humanity. We want YOU to join this discussion!

Two themes which emerged at the 2014 meeting were financial and political acts which can be considered evil, especially acts of genocide and monetary policy decisions that impact wide segments of the world population. We can both build on these discussions and reach out in new directions and follow new leads, exploring new tangents of EVIL in any way, shape, or form.

The complex nature of evil is reflected in this call for presentations: in recognising that no one approach or perspective can adequately do justice to what we mean by evil, so there is an equal recognition that no one form of presentation ought to take priority over others.

We solicit contributions which may be
~ papers, panels, workshops, reports
~ case studies
~ performance pieces; dramatic readings; poetic renditions; short stories; creative writings
~ works of art; works of music

We will also consider other forms of contribution. Successful proposals will normally be given a 20 minute presentation space. Perspectives are sought from all academic disciplines along with, for example, those working in the caring professions, journalism, the media, the military, prison services, politics, psychiatry and other work-related, ngo and vocational areas. Presentations that build on these themes or branch out into new areas are equally welcome.
Key themes for reflection may include, but are not limited to:

  • what is evil?
  • is there ‘new’ evil, or are evil acts/events pretty much the same across time with only our interpretive lenses changing as cultures shift?
  • the nature and sources of evil and human wickedness
  • evil animals? Wicked creatures?
  • the places and spaces of evil
  • crimes, criminals and justice
  • psychopathic behaviour – mad or bad?
  • villains, wicked characters and heroes
  • vice and virtue
  • choice, responsibility, and diminished responsibility
  • social and cultural reactions to evil and human wickedness
  • political evils; evil, power and the state
  • evil and gender; evil and the feminine
  • evil children
  • hell, hells, damnation: evil and the afterlife
  • the portrayal of evil and human wickedness in the media and popular culture
  • suffering in literature and film
  • individual acts of evil, group violence, holocaust and genocide; obligations of bystanders
  • terrorism, war, ethnic cleansing
  • fear, terror, horror
  • the search for meaning and sense in evil and human wickedness
  • the nature and tasks of theodicy
  • religious understandings of evil and human wickedness
  • postmodern approaches to evil and human wickedness
  • ecocriticism, evil and suffering
  • evil and the use/abuse of technology; evil in cyberspace

The Steering Group also welcomes the submission of pre-formed panel proposals.

What to Send
300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 31st October 2014. All submissions are at least double blind peer reviewed. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 23rd January 2015. Abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to the Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word or RTF formats with the following information and in this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract f) up to 10 key words
E-mails should be entitled: Evil16 Abstract Submission.

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs

Stephen Morris: smmorris58@nullyahoo.com
Rob Fisher: evil16@nullinter-disciplinary.net

The conference is part of the At the Interface programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting. All papers accepted for and presented at the conference must be in English and will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook.  Selected papers may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s). All publications from the conference will require editors, to be chosen from interested delegates from the conference.

Inter-Disciplinary.Net believes it is a mark of personal courtesy and professional respect to your colleagues that all delegates should attend for the full duration of the meeting. If you are unable to make this commitment, please do not submit an abstract for presentation.

Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.