27th Annual Visiting Scholar Conference
Center for Archaeological Investigations
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Making Senses of the Past:
Toward a Sensory Archaeology
CALL FOR PAPERS
This is the first and final call for papers for the 2010 CAI Visiting Scholar Conference at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Abstract submission is open to all who are interested, and early career scholars are encouraged to apply.
(Download poster here: US printer-compatible or European printer-compatible.)
The 2010 VS Conference, “Making Senses of the Past: Toward a Sensory Archaeology” will provide a unique opportunity to explore sensory modes of approaching the past. Human interaction with the surrounding world is mediated through our senses. Yet archaeological interpretation has traditionally been dominated by visual descriptions, thus effectively marginalizing the senses of smell, taste, hearing, and touch as unmeasurable ways of engaging with the world. This has led to a silent, odorless, disembodied, and sense-less past. Recent work, however, has explored alternative ways to make sense of past societies, investigating soundscapes, olfactory and haptic analyses, and somatic memory, as well as other less tangible visual qualities such as shimmer and color. Click here to read more about sensory archaeology.
The conference seeks researchers who share an interest in sensory modes of approaching the past, and it will cross boundaries between chronological periods, geographical regions, and material specializations.
Potential themes for papers include, but are not limited to:
• the presentation of new results of sensory archaeological projects •
• multisensory and synesthetic aspects of the production and consumption of material culture •
• the recognition of sensory hierarchies in past societies •
• embodied practices, including memory •
• the dissemination of sensuous pasts in the present •
A key aim of this conference is to provide a forum for discussing and evaluating the contribution of these new methodologies to archaeology. A related issue is to explore if/how the disparate fields within such sensory studies could be united into a more holistic approach to the past. The presentation and dissemination of the results of such work will be considered also – how appropriate is the written word for presenting the results of sensory research, and what alternatives are there?
The conference will take place on 26 – 27 March 2010 at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois. An informal welcome reception is planned for the evening of Thursday the 25th, and the conference reception will take place on Friday the 26th, following the first day of papers. Conference attendance is open to all who are interested and registration details will be available on this Web site in the near future.
Please note that it is currently expected that presentations will be limited to 25-30 minutes.* Participants will also be asked to submit detailed summaries of their papers prior to the conference, to allow the session discussants time to prepare their responses. Further details concerning these summaries will be forthcoming upon acceptance of abstracts.
Abstract submissions are due on 1st December 2009 and should be submitted via e-mail to the current CAI Visiting Scholar, Dr. Jo Day, at firstname.lastname@example.org. PDF files are the preferred format, but Microsoft Word is also acceptable. Length of abstract must be limited to 300 words (excluding titles, authors, or funding information). Please do not include illustrations. Submissions that do not follow these criteria will not be reviewed. See the Abstract Guidelines for further information on preparing your submission.
Abstracts will be selected for inclusion by the CAI selection committee, and applicants will be informed of the decision in mid-December. All papers presented at this conference are eligible for inclusion in the peer-reviewed conference volume, which will be published by the Center for Archaeological Investigations as part of their Occasional Papers series.
We very much look forward to your submissions, and hope that you will take the opportunity to join us in Carbondale for this exciting event.
* Presentation lengths will be finalized once all abstracts have been reviewed and participants notified.