Call for Presentations

11th Global Conference

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Saturday 1st November – Monday 3rd November 2014
Prague, Czech Republic


Call for Presentations

This inter- and multi-disciplinary conference explores dying and death and the ways culture impacts care for the dying, the overall experience of dying, and how the dead are remembered. Over the past four decades, scholarship in thanatology has increased dramatically. This particular conference seeks a broad array of perspectives that explore, analyse, and/or interpret the myriad interrelations and interactions that exist between death and culture. Culture not only presents and portrays ideas about “a good death” and norms that seek to achieve it, culture also operates as both a vehicle and medium through which meaning about death is communicated and understood. Sadly, too, culture sometimes facilitates death through violence.

Today, many people around the world maintain an increasingly passive role in caring for the dying, and supporting those who grieve a loss. Given that death, serving the dying, and caring for the bereaved has always been such an essential and unavoidable feature of life in traditional societies, a key emphasis in this year’s conference will involve an exploration of the connections between contemporary technologies, social media hubs, and modern health care delivery systems and the ways they impact current end-of-life issues and decisions, including the experience of bereavement and grief. This conference welcomes submissions that specifically assess how these factors are altering our contemporary attitudes toward death, and how patients, staff, and survivors intersect amidst newly emerging care settings and sites of memorialization.

Furthermore, this conference welcomes submissions discussing changes in policy, protocol, and/or legislation regarding aid-in-dying, active/passive euthanasia, and assisted suicide. Given the many recent alterations of law involving these topics in several European countries, submissions exploring such issues will be embraced especially.

We also welcome submissions that produce conversations engaging historical, ethnographic, normative, literary, anthropological, philosophical, artistic, political or other terms that elaborate a relationship between death and culture.

Proposals in the form of presentations, performances, workshops and pre-formed panels are invited on any of the following additional core conference themes listed below:

1: Health Care Systems: Patients, Staff, and Institutions

  • Modern Health Care Delivery Systems and Care for the Dying
  • Palliative Care
  • Hospice
  • Elder Care/Ageing in Place Models
  • Trauma and Emergency Care
  • Nursing Homes/Skilled Facilities/Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFEs)/Assisted Living
  • Clinical Competencies in Pain Management and Symptom Control
  • Measurements, Incentives, Regulatory Statutes, and Recommendations
  • Continuity of Care Across Treatment Settings
  • Interdisciplinary Care

2: The Caregiver-Patient Relationship

  • Caregiver’s (Physician’s?) Obligations and Virtues
  • Medical Paternalism and Respect for the Patient, Autonomy
  • Truth-Telling
  • Informed Consent
  • Medicine in the West for a Multicultural Society
  • Contested Therapies Within the Physician-Patient Relationship
  • Conflicts of Interest; Problems of Conscience
  • Caregiver Stress/Caregiver Burnout/Compassion Fatigue
  • Being With Someone Who Is Dying
  • Assessment Challenges/Barriers

3: End-of-Life Issues and Decisions

  • Defining Death
  • Organ Transplantation and Organ Donation
  • The Interplay of Ethical Meta-Principles at the End of Life
  • Nonmaleficence
  • Beneficence
  • Autonomy
  • Death Anxiety
  • Choosing Death
  • Advance Directives/Advance Planning/Physician Order for Life-Sustaining Treatments (POLST)/Do Not Resuscitate
  • Considering End-of-Life Issues and Decisions and Legislation

4: Relationships Between Death and Culture:

  • internet/social media
  • music
  • literature
  • film
  • broadcast media
  • religious broadcasting
  • journalism
  • athletics
  • comic books
  • novels / poetry / short story
  • television
  • radio
  • print media
  • technology
  • popular art / architecture
  • sacred vs. profane space
  • advertising
  • consumerism

Proposals, presentations and performances will be considered on any related theme.

In order to support and encourage inter-disciplinarity engagement, it is our intention to create the possibility of starting dialogues between the parallel events running during this conference. Delegates are welcome to attend up to two sessions in each of the concurrent conferences. We also propose to produce cross-over sessions between these groups – and we welcome proposals which deal with the relationship between Making Sense of: Dying and Death, Strangers, Aliens and Foreigners and Making Sense of: Play.

What to Send:
300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 27th June 2014. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 19th September 2014. Abstracts should be submitted to the Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word or RTF formats, following this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) body of proposal, f) up to 10 keywords.
E-mails should be entitled: DD11 Abstract Submission

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using 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:
Nate Hinerman: nphinerman@usfca.edu
Rob Fisher: dd11@inter-disciplinary.net

The conference is part of the Making Sense Of: series of research projects, which in turn belong to the Probing the Boundaries programmes of Inter-Disciplinary.Net. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore discussions which are innovative and challenging. All papers accepted for and presented at this conference are eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers may be invited to go forward for development into a themed ISBN hard copy volume.

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.

Details on the conferences running alongside this project in 2014 can be found here: Strangers, Aliens and Foreigners and Making Sense of: Play

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.