[Annonce] PhD workshop « The Body in Cultural History »

The Body in Cultural History

 PhD workshop in Oslo, Norway, November 4.- 6. 2015

What is a human body? Biology, obviously, but also a contested site of subjectivities, identities and theories. The ways bodies are experienced, lived, conceptualized, interpreted and theorized are products of their cultural contexts as well of historically specific conditions and claims.

Carolyn Carlson, “Poems for unknowns, Designs, Dreams to realize”, Carnets et cahiers de notes. III. 5. Poèmes et dessins, 2005-2008. Gouache noire. BnF.


The workshop on the Body in Cultural History invites PhD students who work on issues and aspects concerning the human body in cultural and historical contexts. Within the overall perspectives of cultural history the key concepts will be normal / pathological; discipline; body hierarchies; stigma; nutrition; biopolitics; body images; health; gender; age.

 The invited key note lecturers are:

  • Anu Korhonen is a university lecturer in European Area and Cultural Studies at the University of Helsinki in Finland, and a cultural historian working on early modern English topics.
  • Christina Lutter is a professor at the History Department, University of Vienna and PI of the project Social and Cultural Communities across Medieval Monastic, Urban, and Courtly Cultures.
  • Dag Album is a professor at the Department of Sociology and Human Geography and heads a research project on disease prestige hierarchies in medical culture.

Teachers and respondents in the discussion of texts from the PhD students will also be : professor in cultural history Anne Eriksen, professor in medical epistemology Eivind Engebretsen, professor in sociology Marit Haldar and postdoctor in linguistics / sociology Jan Grue.

The PhD students who are accepted to the workshop will be invited to present a text (for instance one chapter) related to their theses and get it discussed by the invited resource persons as well as by the entire group. They are also expected to be respondents to the work of one other participant. A reading list of approximately 600 pages will be distributed before the course. The workshop offers possibilities to meet and work across disciplinary borders, as it invites participants from social and human sciences as well as from medicine and health care.

The workshop will take place at the University of Oslo, Blindern Campus from 4th to 6th November 2015. There is no fee, but participants will be expected to pay their own travel. A grant for the stay in Oslo is offered, as well as free meals during the workshop. The workshop will welcome up to ten PhD students. Applicants are requested to send a short abstract (max 300 words) presenting their work and the issues they particularly want to discuss at the workshop. Deadline for applications is 1 July 2015. Participation at the workshop equals 5 ECTS.

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