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Adaptation in the Humanities: Reimagining the Past, Present and Future

Conference held at The University of Western Australia and online


Image: Tatiana Shepeleva, Cyborg with human skull in his hand, shutterstock

15th annual Limina: The Journal of Historical and Cultural Studies and 39th annual Perth Medieval and Renaissance Group (PMRG) and Medieval and Early Modern Studies Conference.

Date: 9–10 September 2021
Venue: Learning Studio 1.10 and 1.11, EZONE Building, The University of Western Australia (and online)
Call For Papers Deadline: The Call For Papers is now closed.
Registration: Please register online by Friday 1 September: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/adaptation-in-the-humanities-reimagining-the-past-present-and-future-tickets-156041041957. 
Enquiries: adaptationconference2020@gmail.com 

Visit the conference website

Download the conference programme

 Download the conference timetable




Keynote Speaker

Professor Imelda Whelehan (The University of Western Australia)

'Discipline Wars: Adaptations in the Gap'

Adaptation studies navigated a perilous path between literary and cinema studies in the mid-20th century. Later, media and cultural studies marked out other areas of academic pursuit; in common with adaptation studies they were shaped by institutional departmental organisation, shifting canon formations and research funding successes, not to mention emerging theories and shifting critical trends in HASS areas.

Imelda Whelehan, an academic child of the ‘theory wars’, will present a short history of adaptation studies through a thirty-year career in the gap.

Date: Thursday 9 September 2021
Time: 6:00pm–7:00pm
Venue: UWA EZONE North Learning Studio 1.10.
Registration: Attendance for the keynote can be in-person and online. Register at: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/discipline-wars-adaptations-in-the-gap-registration-167703927963

This public lecture is the keynote address of the 2021 ‘Adaptations in the Humanities’ Conference. NB: if you are already registered for the conference then you are also registered for the keynote.

Download a copy of the keynote flyer


Call for Papers

Our knowledge of the world imagined, experienced, or learned is constantly in flux. As humans, we change, adapt, and mould the environments around us, the knowledge systems we use and the items we create. Adaptation can be forced through the presentation of an obstacle, or it can occur symbiotically within a group.

In 2021 Limina: The Journal of Historical and Cultural Studies, the Perth Medieval and Renaissance Group (PMRG) and Medieval and Early Modern Studies at The University of Western Australia are joining forces to provide a forum for the presentation of the myriad of ‘adaptations’ worlds, individuals, languages, ideas, and peoples, real or otherwise, experience.

The conference will be held both online and in-person at The University of Western Australia (EZONE Central Giumelli Learning Studios 2.09 and 2.10) in early September 2021.

The conference committee invites proposals for 20-minute papers or panels (of no more than three speakers) from the breadth of humanities research to explore the products of adaptations, and the processes that bring them into being.

Papers topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Literary and popular culture adaptations (e.g. text to screen; children’s literature and YA adaptations of texts, graphic novel and video-game recreations of literary classics);
  • Adaptations throughout history (e.g. Cultural adaptations, reception, neoclassicism, medievalism, early modernism, Neo-Victorianism, Gothic revival, science fiction, utopianism, etc.);
  • Adaptation of memory (e.g. emotion or event based i.e. historical re-enactments, responses to crises/trauma/adversity/oppressive systems);
  • Translation studies (e.g. translations of medieval manuscripts or ancient papyri);
  • Adaptation and electronic literature (e.g. going beyond re-mediation to interface and recreate the text)
  • Childhood studies (e.g. learning; education; “adapting to and through the world”);
  • Critical studies on visual adaptations (e.g. interpretive dance; interactive artworks);
  • Adaptations of the self (e.g. biographies; auto-biographies, con-artists, fakes, forgeries and scams);
  • Adaptation and embodiment (e.g disability, immaterial bodies, in/corporality, disability; cyborgs, AI);
  • Adaptations of reality (e.g. sci-fi; hallucinogens, VR);
  • Museum and Material Studies (e.g. displaying/reinterpreting/rehousing material artefacts to contemporary audiences, heritage studies and technology, 3D modeling/printing);
  • Environmental adaptations (e.g. permanently or temporarily adapting the environment to suit the needs of humans, artificial environments, biospheres/biodomes);
  • Adaptation of space and place (e.g. rehabilitation, renovation, renewal, gentrification, repatriation).

This conference will be presented in a hybrid of in-person and virtual presentations spread across two half-day sessions. 

Accepted presenters will be expected to submit either a recorded presentation or a paper by 20 August 2021 that will be pre-circulated to registered attendees of the conference. 

During the conference itself, presenters will present a 5-minute synopsis of their papers in each panel before breaking into a 30–40 minute Q & A session. 

Conference abstract submissions should consist of:

  • A title
  • An abstract (max. 200 words);
  • A short biography (max. 50 words).

Submit abstracts to: adaptationconference2020@gmail.com by 13 April 2021. The Call for Papers is now closed.

This conference is co-sponsored by the ARC Centre for Excellence for the History of Emotions.