Global Horror: Local Perspectives
An Inclusive Interdisciplinary Conference
Sunday 14th March 2021 - Monday 15th March 2021
Horror pervades human experience. It affects us both as individuals and as members of social communities, it is recurrent in pop culture and arguably present in all fields of human knowledge and realms of storytelling, from Cronus eating his own children, to Freddy Krueger’s sadistic murders in A Nightmare on Elm Street to media coverage of war. As a fundamentally paradoxical concept, horror simultaneously repels and fascinates us: we naturally dread it, yet we are drawn to it. We are taught to avoid that which is horrifying, but the appeal of horror, whether in the form of fiction or sensational news, is irresistible. Indeed, we simultaneously narrate, describe, imagine, consume, dread and crave horror in all of its dimensions, and with the most varied goals.
Horror taps into primal emotions of fear and disgust that are universal to the human condition, and finds expression across cultures and historical periods. Yet the texts that shape the ways in which horror is broadly understood historically reflect predominantly Anglo-European and American cultural, social, historical and geographical contexts.
Growing awareness and appreciation of the rich horror traditions of other countries around the world, including Japan, Korean, India, Brazil and Ecuador, has highlighted the importance of considering horror in a global context. Accordingly, the Global Horror: Local Perspectives Project provides a platform for exploring the ways in which horror motifs and themes are expressed through the ‘local perspectives’ that inform the creative practices and daily life of particular nations and cultures.
It is not the intent of the Project to exclude Anglo-European and American perspectives from the conversation of global horror but rather to centre other horror traditions which have frequently been de-centred or completely overlooked in the past. The scope of the Project therefore includes work that explores marginalised local perspectives within Anglo-European and American horror, and work that examines Anglo-European and American horror from a global perspective with a view to forming an innovative interdisciplinary publication to engender further research and collaboration.
Horror manifests itself in myriad ways, with ramifications that transcend the lines that demarcate disciplines, subjects and professions. It is only through interdisciplinary engagement that we can develop a more complete understanding of the mechanisms that nations and cultures around the world use to express, process, and cope with horror. The conference therefore offers a springboard for participants from diverse professions, practices and walks of life to engage in interdisciplinary dialogues on topics that include:
~ Case studies of un(der)-represented horror traditions in nations and cultures
~ How the history, religion, cultural norms of a nation/culture influence local perceptions and representations of horror in literature, film, television, music, art and videogames
~ Impact of digital technology on creating and disseminating local perspectives on horror
~ How globalisation as a cultural and economic force influences ‘local perspectives’ on horror
~ Creative practitioners whose work shapes local perspectives on horror
~ Dark humour and making fun of global horror
~ Connections between horror in everyday life and fictional horror
~ Impact of real or fictional global horrors on individuals (mental illness, trauma, nightmares, other physiological symptoms)
~ Horror in religious/spiritual systems (martyrdom, grotesque/monstrous deities, rituals, etc.)
~ Social practices associated to horror: cannibalism, (self-)mutilation, abusive rites of passage, suicide, heresies
~ Horror in nation-building (slavery, war, genocide, etc.)
~ Medical/clinical perspectives: interfaces of horror and medicine; dealing with patients struggling to cope with horrifying experiences
~ Educational perspectives: how the curriculum shapes perceptions of horror, its uses and its impacts; horror in children’s stories/horror as pedagogical tool, etc.
~ Commodifying horror: dark tourism, etc.
~ Technology as agent of horror (weapons, dissemination of fear, etc.)
~ How national and international law facilitate and mitigate horror
~ Activism as response to horror
~ Horror and the media: news coverage, sensationalism
~ Horror and space: streets, cities, towns, buildings, deserted areas
~ The design of horror: images, branding, advertisement, commercial campaigns involving horror
~ Urban legends and local horrors
~ Best practice for researching and studying global horror
~ Interdisciplinarity as a tool to overcome the indescribability of horror
What To Send
The aim of this inclusive interdisciplinary conference and collaborative networking event is to bring people together and encourage creative conversations in the context of a variety of formats: papers, seminars, workshops, storytelling, performances, poster presentations, panels, q&a’s, round-tables etc. Creative responses to the subject, such as poetry/prose, short film screenings/original drama, installations and alternative presentation styles that engage the audience and foster debate are particularly encouraged. Please feel free to put forward proposals that you think will get the message across, in whatever form.
At the end of the conference we will be exploring ways in which we can develop the discussions and dialogues in new and sustainable inclusive interdisciplinary directions, including research, workshops and publications which will help us make sense of the topics discussed during the meeting.
300 word proposals, presentations, abstracts and other forms of contribution and participation should be submitted by Friday 4th September 2020. Other forms of participation should be discussed in advance with the Organising Chairs.
All submissions will be at least double reviewed, under anonymous (blind) conditions, by a global panel drawn from members of the Project Team, The Development Team and the Advisory Board. In practice our procedures usually entail that by the time a proposal is accepted, it will have been triple and quadruple reviewed.
You will be notified of the panel’s decision by Friday 18th September 2020.
If your submission is accepted for the conference, a full draft of your contribution should be submitted by Friday 15th January 2021.
Abstracts and proposals may be in Word, RTF or Notepad formats with the following information and in this order:
a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in the programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) type of proposal e.g. paper presentation, workshop, panel, film, performance, etc, f) body of proposal, g) up to 10 keywords.
E-mails should be entitled: Global Horror Submission
Where To Send
Abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to the Organising Chair and the Project Administrator:
What’s so Special About a Progressive Connexions Event?
A fresh, friendly, dynamic format – at Progressive Connexions we are dedicated to breaking away from the stuffy, old-fashion conference formats, where endless presentations are read aloud off PowerPoints. We work to bring you an interactive format, where exchange of experience and information is alternated with captivating workshops, engaging debates and round tables, time set aside for getting to know each other and for discussing common future projects and initiatives, all in a warm, relaxed, egalitarian atmosphere.
A chance to network with international professionals – the beauty of our interdisciplinary events is that they bring together professionals from all over the world and from various fields of activity, all joined together by a shared passion. Not only will the exchange of experience, knowledge and stories be extremely valuable in itself, but we seek to create lasting, ever-growing communities around our projects, which will become a valuable resource for those belonging to them.
A chance to be part of constructing change – There is only one thing we love as much as promoting knowledge: promoting real, lasting social change by encouraging our participants to take collective action, under whichever form is most suited to their needs and expertise (policy proposals, measuring instruments, research projects, educational materials, etc.) We will support all such actions in the aftermath of the event as well, providing a platform for further discussions, advice from the experts on our Project Advisory Team and various other tools and intellectual resources, as needed.
An opportunity to discuss things that matter to you – Our events are not only about discussing how things work in the respective field, but also about how people work in that field – what are the struggles, problems and solutions professionals have found in their line of work, what are the areas where better communication among specialists is needed and how the interdisciplinary approach can help bridge those gaps and help provide answers to questions from specific areas of activity.
An unforgettable experience – When participating in a Progressive Connexions event, there is a good chance you will make some long-time friends. Our group sizes are intimate, our venues are comfortable and relaxing and our event locations are suited to the history and culture of the event.
Progressive Connexions 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 or proposal for presentation.
Please note: Progressive Connexions is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence, nor can we offer discounts off published rates and fees.
Sponsored by: Progressive Connexions