Victims, Perpetrators, Bystanders and Collaborators as historical concepts: Redundant labels, useful categorisations or somewhere in between?
19th June 2018, Grimond Building, University of Kent, Canterbury
There’s a big fashion for categorising bystanders, perpetrators and so on, why? Everyone collaborated!
– Interview with a Holocaust survivor, January 2018
The twentieth century saw the concepts ‘victims’, ‘perpetrators’, ‘bystanders’ and ‘collaborators’ entering not only historical study but public discourse surrounding instances of war, atrocity and genocide. However, these terms also have a broader application outside of the twentieth century, in contexts of earlier imperialism, religious iconography and revolution. Despite this near universal application, there has been surprisingly little critical evaluation of the conceptual utility of the aforementioned terms amongst scholars. Problems associated with the dearth of engagement in our understanding and usage of these words include reductionist tendencies that can obscure nuance and disregard the experiences of individuals whose stories are not so easily classified. This conference aims to provide a forum for postgraduate students and early career researchers to begin to facilitate vital discussion as to the future of these often problematic concepts.
Applications are sought from postgraduates and early career scholars, focusing on the following themes relating to the application of these terms within different historical contexts, including, but certainly not limited to:
Public memory, commemoration and the mass media
Imagery and visual culture
Occupations during wartime
Law, courts and society
Revolutionary mentalities and culture
Submissions with an interdisciplinary approach are particularly encouraged.
Please send a 250 word abstract for a 20-30 minute paper and a brief biographical statement to Kate Docking and Ellis Spicer via firstname.lastname@example.org by 16th March 2018.
The Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies is delighted to announce TWO FULLY FUNDED AHRC PhD STUDENTSHIPS to work on the topic of relations between sixteenth century England and Scotland. The successful students will be jointly supervised between Kent and the British Library, and have the contribution to contribute to a major British Library exhibition on relations between Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots. Links to details of these studentships (one on early and one on late sixteenth-century Anglo-Scots relations) and how to apply are below:
The Festival aims bring together colleagues and students from the School of History to have informal conversations about the collective experiences of ‘doing history’ through a variety of panel debates.
1 – 2pm Challenging source materials and methods (chair: Dr Claire Jones)
Dr Emily Mantelow; Dr Jasmine Kilburn-Toppin; Dr Juliette Pattinson; Professor Ulf Schmidt
2 – 3pm Collaborative Working (chair: Dr Emma Purce)
Dr Rebekah Higgitt; Dr Jan Loop; Professor Kenneth Fincham
3pm – Tea and coffee
3 – 4pm Interdisciplinary Perspectives (chair: Dr Aske Brock)
Dr Ben Marsh; Dr Karen Jones; Dr Emma Hanna; Dr Phil Slavin
4 – 5pm Writing and Publishing (chair: Professor Gaynor Johnson)
Dr Barbara Bombi; Professor Charlotte Sleigh; Professor Grayson Ditchfield
Thanks to everyone that entered our essay competition following our recent History at Kent Day. Entrants were required to write 200 words on ‘Who do you think is the most influential figure in history?’, and we received some fantastic entries!
We very much enjoyed reading all the essays, and found it very difficult to select our winners, who are listed below:
1st prize, £100 Amazon vouchers
Andrew Phipps who wrote about Edward Jenner
2nd prize, £50 Amazon vouchers
Ben Warwick who wrote about Robert J. Oppenheimer
3rd prize, £25 Amazon vouchers
Sam Pruszewicz who wrote about Lt Col Stanislav Petrov
To everyone that entered – you will all receive a small gift in the post to say thank you for entering!
On Friday 22nd September, Rob Brown, our Student Experience Manager and Eloise Bates, Student Support Officer took some of our new undergraduate students to the Historic Dockyard, Chatham. The students got the opportunity to visit the Bridge of HMS Cavalier, and they also enjoyed a Submarine tour on HMS Ocelot.
This year, our research seminars will take place on alternating Wednesdays (weeks 1,3,5,7,9, & 11) in term time at 4PM in Eliot Lecture Theatre 2 (ELT2). We also have an excellent line-up of post-graduate seminars that will take place at 5:15PM in Rutherford Seminar Room 7 (RS7) on the other Wednesdays (weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, & 12). Please see the attached schedule for a full list of speakers.
In week 1 (at 4PM on Wednesday 27 September), we are delighted to welcome Dr Suzanna Ivanič, a new lecturer in Early Modern History here at the University of Kent.
The title of her paper is Locating Religion in the Homes of Seventeenth-Century Prague Burghers.
A recent focus on religion in the home has provided fertile new evidence about lived religion – the beliefs, practices and identities of the faithful in an everyday context – but, what if we interrogate the relationship between the home and religion more thoroughly? How does religion change as it crosses the threshold? Is ‘domestic devotion’ really more unorthodox and individualistic? What do we mean by ‘domesticating’ religion? It is now well-established that not only Protestants, but also Catholics, practised religion in their homes in early modern Europe. By analysing inventories and objects from the multiconfessional setting of Prague across the seventeenth century, this paper explores the differences in domestic religious practice between confessions, how domestic space enabled unique aspects of devotion (‘private’ forms or particular rituals focusing on doors and beds, for example), and how objects that came into the home could either subvert or reinforce orthodoxy and orthopraxy within this extra-ecclesiastical space.
As ever, a drinks reception will follow this seminar. Please see the attached poster for more information.