Witchcraft & Emotions: Media and Cultural Meanings – Registration Open

Witchcraft & Emotions: Media and Cultural Meanings
University of Melbourne.
25-27 November, 2015

Convenors: Charles Zika, Laura Kounine, Sarah Ferber, Jacqueline Van Gent and Charlotte-Rose Millar

Information and Registration: http://www.historyofemotions.org.au/events/witchcraft-and-emotions

Witchcraft is an intensely emotional crime. The crime of witchcraft fundamentally concerns the impact of emotional states on physical ones. Anger, envy or hate of one person towards another could manifest itself in a variety of physical ailments and even death. In early modern Europe, women’s passions and lusts were sometimes said to make them more prone to witchcraft than their male counterparts. It was not just the witch who was intensely emotional: the Devil could also play the role of jealous lover or violent master. So too the families, relations, friends, and sometimes the community as a whole, would be drawn into the complex web of emotional claim and counter claim from which developed accusations and condemnations of witchcraft.

Yet despite the path-breaking work of Lyndal Roper and Diane Purkiss on the emotional self-representation and imagination of accused witches and their accusers, an emotional history of witchcraft remains relatively unexplored. This conference seeks to bring together scholars from a number of different fields, including history, art history and anthropology, to probe further into the relationship between witchcraft and emotions through an inter-disciplinary perspective.

Confirmed speakers include: Victoria Burbank (Anthropology, University of Western Australia), Johannes Dillinger (History, Oxford Brookes), Iris Gareis (Anthropology, Goethe University Frankfurt), Malcolm Gaskill (History, University of East Anglia), Eliza Kent (University of New England), Isak Niehaus (Anthropology, Brunel University), Abaigéal Warfield, (History, University of Adelaide), Jan Machielsen (History, University of Oxford), Patricia Simons (History of Art, University of Michigan), Julian Goodare (History, University of Edinburgh), John Taylor (Anthropology, La Trobe University), Deborah Van Heekeren (Anthropology, Macquarie University), Charlotte-Rose Millar (History, University of Melbourne), Laura Kounine (History, Max Planck Institute Berlin), Jacqueline van Gent (History, University of Western Australia), Charles Zika (History, University of Melbourne) and Sarah Ferber (History, University of Wollongong).

NB: There will be a free, public film screening of the 1922 film ‘Haxan: Witchcraft through the Ages’ at 7:30pm on Thursday 26 November in the Singapore Theatre, Melbourne School of Design (University of Melbourne), followed by a panel with Q&A.

This symposium is the first of two, the second of which will be held in Berlin in June 2016.