Alex Marlow-Mann as series editor

Dr Alex Marlow-Mann, Lecturer in Italian in the Department of Modern Languages, is to be co-editor of a new book series, Remapping World Cinema: Regional Tensions and Global Transformations,  alongside Professor Rob Stone (University of Birmingham), Professor Paul Cooke (University of Leeds) and Dr Stephanie Dennison (University of Leeds), to be launched on Thursday, 23 November 2017.

The series rewrites the territory of contemporary world cinema, revising outdated assumptions of national cinemas, challenging complacent views of hegemonic film cultures and questioning common ideas of production, distribution and reception. It will remap established territories such as American, European and Asian cinema and explore new territories that exist both within and beyond nation-states such as regional cinemas and online communities, while also demarcating important contexts for global cinema such as festival circuits and the discipline of film studies itself.

The launch event will comprise the presentation of the series’ flagship volume The Routledge Companion to World Cinema, together with Professor Sally Faulkner’s Middlebrow Cinema. All of the series editors will be present to present the Companion and the series alongside many of the contributors, and Professor Faulkner will deliver a special guest lecture. This will be followed by a wine reception and a screening of Pedro Almodóvar’s All About My Mother (1999).

The launch will be taking place at The Electric cinema, Birmingham between 5pm and 8.30pm.

To reserve a place, contact Professor Rob Stone at B:Film: The Birmingham Centre for Film Studies,

For further event details, please see The Electic’s webpage here:


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Alex Marlow-Mann on world cinema

Dr Alex Marlow-Mann, Lecturer in Italian in the Department of Modern Languages has co-edited a new collection entitled The Routledge Companion to World Cinema (Routledge, 2017), alongside Professor Rob Stone (University of Birmingham), Professor Paul Cooke (University of Leeds) and Dr Stephanie Dennison (Unversity of Leeds).

The collection explores and examines a global range of films and filmmakers, their movements and audiences, comparing their cultural, technological and political dynamics, identifying the impulses that constantly reshape the form and function of the cinemas of the world. Each of the forty chapters provides a survey of a topic, explaining why the issue or area is important, and critically discussing the leading views in the area. Designed as a dynamic forum for forty-three world-leading scholars, this companion contains significant expertise and insight and is dedicated to challenging complacent views of hegemonic film cultures and replacing outmoded ideas about production, distribution and reception. It offers both a survey and an investigation into the condition and activity of contemporary filmmaking worldwide, often challenging long-standing categories and weighted – often politically motivated – value judgements, thereby grounding and aligning the reader in ‘remapping’; an activity designed to prompt rethinking.

For more details, please see the publisher’s webpage here:

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Jeremy Carrette in The Guardian

Professor Jeremy Carrette, Professor of Philosophy, Religion and Culture and Kent’s Dean for Europe, featured in The Guardian newspaper last Friday, cover dated 10 November 2017.

The article, entitled ‘How To Do a Postgrad Course for Free in Europe’ examined the opportunities for postgraduate study on the continent in a post-Brexit era. As Dean for Europe, Jeremy has responsibility for the engagement strategies in Kent’s postgraduate centres in Paris, Rome, Athens and Brussels.

‘There are numerous benefits in terms of travel, experience, personal development, language skills and, more importantly, a focus on the integration of place and academic subject,’ explains Jeremy in the article. ‘For example, the Brussels School of International Studies has access to all the political agencies in Brussels for internships and experience visits, speakers visits and so on.’

To read the full article, please see The Guardian’s webpage here:

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Edward Kanterian on Radio 3

Dr Edward Kanterian, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy, featured on BBC Radio 3’s Sunday Feature on last Sunday, 12 November 2017, in an edition entitled ‘A Column for Infinity’.

The programme explores the work of Romanian sculptor Constanin Brancusi, in particular his powerful memorial to the First World War, the ‘Endless Column’. The piece is is no ordinary piece of commemorative art. It carries no specific reference to the dead of 1916 or of their heroic actions and their sacrifices. For in Romania, the first World War symbolises reunification, and some believe the sculpture represents Romania’s expansion and history.

‘Each time somebody from our street would die, a very long procession would be formed, and going all the way to the cemetery; and the endless column was there all the time in the background,’ reminisces Edward in the programme. ‘Under such a setting, death, in a way does not feel so bad any more, after all.’

Edward can be heard approximately at both 3 minutes and 13 minutes into the programme.

To listen to the full programme, please see the BBC webpage here:

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Workshop to explore West-East poetry links

The Centre for Modern European Literature, in conjunction with the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS, University of London), is hosting a workshop entitled ‘The West-Eastern Lyric: Modernist Poetry Between Asia and Europe’, to be held on Friday 17 November 2017 at SOAS.

In his book Enlightenment Orientalism (2011), Srinivas Aravamudan argued that ‘narratives of influence from “East” to “West” are often subject to special pleading, contingency, and “accidental sagacity,” whereas influences from the “West” to the “East” involve formulations deriving from scientific necessity, historical causality, and colonial power’. This workshop will consider the implications of Aravamudan’s insight for lyric poetry, exploring the many lives of ‘Eastern Poetry” and the ways in which its circulation across several languages challenges any understanding of modernism as occurring along a ‘single Greenwich meridian of world literature’.

Two members from the School of European Culture and Languages will present papers. Dr Xiaofan Amy Li, Lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature, will give a talk entitled ‘The Nature of the Lyric? Henri Michaux and Chinese Poetics’, in which she will explore the connections between Michaux’s poetry (commonly seen as ‘Chinese-inspired’ or ‘Oriental’) and Chinese poetics.

Ben Hutchinson, Professor of European Literature in the Department of Modern Languages, will give a lecture entitled ‘“After-poems”: Hans Bethge and Chinese Lieder’. The talk will situate Bethge’s reception of Chinese poetry – and in particular, that of Li-Tai-Po – within the context of European chinoiserie, notably by concentrating on his engagement with a recurring imagery of song and lyric.

The all-day workshop will be held at SOAS, 21/22 Russell Square, London, beginning at 9.30am. The full programme is available here:

To book, please use the Eventbrite page here:


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Laser scanning at the Petrie Museum

As part of an AHRC-funded project, ‘Roman and Late Antique Artefacts in Egypt’, led by Dr Ellen Swift FSA, Reader in Archaeology in the Department of Classical & Archaeological Studies, archaeology technician Lloyd Bosworth has been joining researchers at UCL’s Petrie Museum to undertake laser scanning using the department’s Romer laser scanner.

The laser scanning of a range of musical instruments from Roman Egypt is a key element of the project, as it allows the recreation of these objects through both 3D printing and the making of replicas using authentic materials and techniques. The instruments will then be played, giving us the chance to hear the music of Roman Egypt in the 21st century.

The scanned objects include reed panpipes, a bell in the shape of the head of Bes, the dwarf god of ancient Egypt who protected mothers and children, and a number of small bells attached to tiny bracelets which were worn by children as amulets.

Lloyd is currently creating 3D models of the instruments from the scanned data, before the 3D printing process can begin. The 3D printing will be done by craft technicians in the School of Music and Fine Art here at Kent, while a number of other replicas will be handmade by Canterbury jeweller Justin Richardson. These replicas will form an important part of the project’s public exhibition at the Petrie Museum opening in December 2018, and will showcase the project’s research alongside a range of artefacts from Roman Egypt.

You can follow the project blog to keep up-to-date with progress:

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Simon Elliott on the Council for British Archaeology

Alumnus Dr Simon Elliott, who completed his PhD in the Department of Classical & Archaeological Studies earlier in the year, has been elected as a trustee of the Council for British Archaeology.

The President of the Council of British Archaeology is television present Dan Snow, who hosts the podcast Dan Snow’s History Hit, which recently featured Simon on the 1 October edition.

Our congratulations to Simon.


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Simon Kirchin publishes on thick evaluation

Dr Simon Kirchin, Reader in the Department of Philosophy and Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, has just published a new book entitled Thick Evaluation (Oxford University Press, 2017).

We use evaluative terms and concepts every day. We call actions right and wrong, teachers wise and ignorant, and pictures elegant and grotesque. Philosophers place evaluative concepts into two camps. Thin concepts, such as goodness and badness, and rightness and wrongness have evaluative content, but they supposedly have no or hardly any nonevaluative, descriptive content: they supposedly give little or no specific idea about the character of the person or thing described. In contrast, thick concepts such as kindness, elegance and wisdom supposedly give a more specific idea of people or things. Yet, given typical linguistic conventions, thick concepts also convey evaluation. Kind people are often viewed positively, whilst ignorance has negative connotations.

The distinction between thin and thick concepts is frequently drawn in philosophy and is central to everyday life. However, very few articles or books discuss the distinction. In his new book, Simon discusses thin and thick concepts, highlighting key assumptions, questions and arguments, many of which have gone unnoticed. He focuses in on the debate between ‘separationists’ (those who think that thick concepts can be separated into component parts of evaluative, often very ‘thin’, content and nonevaluative content) and ‘nonseparationists’ (who deny this).

Thick Evaluation argues for a version of nonseparationism, and in doing so argues both that many concepts are evaluative, and also that evaluation is not exhausted by thin positive and negative stances.

For more details, please see the publisher’s page here:

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Lauren Ware podcast on fear

Dr Lauren Ware, Lecturer in Department of Philosophy, has been interviewed this week on The Owl, the postcast of the Brooklyn Public Philosophers forum, to discuss the philosophy of fear.

Brooklyn Public Philosophers is a forum for philosophers in the Brooklyn area of the US to discuss their work with a general audience, hosted by the Brooklyn Public Library.

The episode, posted on 31 October 2017,  explores the emotion of fear and how it shapes our understanding of risk and danger.

The interview examines fear as a rational emotional response, and goes on to explore the cultural history behind Halloween as a celebrated holiday event.  ‘Negative emotions, like fear, get in the way of accurate risk assessment,’ explains Lauren. ‘When we’re afraid, it makes fearsome events seem more likely to happen… fear makes us bad at imaginative tasks, [so] the ability to imagine possibilities is restricted.’

The full episode is available here:

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Call for participants for heritage workshop

The Centre for Heritage is organising a workshop to be held at Kent’s Brussels School of International Studies, entitled ‘World Heritage, Sustainable Development and Civil Society’ to be held on 29 March 2018.

In 2015, UNESCO ensured that the conservation and management of World Heritage properties became aligned with broader sustainable development objectives by introducing a policy on sustainable development and World Heritage. Despite numerous meetings and published reports on how to operationalise this policy, there has been little interaction with civil society, which lies at the heart of any successful sustainable development project.

This workshop aims to identify models and inclusive approaches which can help to implement this UNESCO policy, as well as finding innovative ways of involving civil society in the processes.

The workshop will be organised around thematic sessions on World Heritage and the pillars of Sustainable Development: Environmental Sustainability, Inclusive Social Development, Inclusive Economic Development and the Fostering of Peace and Security. For the further details, please download the PDF here.

This workshop is open to activists, members of civil society, academics and professionals with expertise in sustainable development or cultural and natural heritage, or people with expertise and interests in social, economic or environmental issues.

Interested participants: Please send a CV and a 200 word statement outlining why you are qualified to participate in this workshop to:

The deadline for submission of the statement and CV is 6 December 2017.

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