8—10 February 2016, Geological Society, London (can also be viewed at http://tinyurl.com/HandsOn16)
Confirmed keynote speakers:
* Prof. Susan J. Douglas (Professor of Communication Studies, University
* Dr. Gerard Alberts (Associate Professor of the History of Mathematics
and Computing, University of Amsterdam)
“Media Scholars and Amateurs of All Countries and Disciplines, Hands-on!”
Recent years have witnessed a growing turn to experimental historical
research in the history of media technologies. In addition to archival
investigation and oral history interviews, historians and enthusiasts
are increasingly uncovering histories of technology through hands-on
exercises in simulation and re-enactment. Equipment lovingly restored by
amateurs, or preserved by national heritage collections, is being placed
in the hands of the people who once operated it, provoking a new and
rich flood of memories.
The turn to experimental research raises profound methodological
questions. The unreliability of narrative memory is well proven, but
what do we know about the limits of haptic and tactile memory? To what
extent is it possible to elicit useful memories of technological arrays
when parts of those arrays are missing or non-functional? How do the
owners of old equipment shape the historical narratives which are
stimulated by their collections?
Hands-On History is a colloquium designed to facilitate discussion of
these issues between historians, users, curators and archivists (amateur
and professional) who are making use of and taking part in these
historical enquiries. In addition to a series of keynote presentations
by leading scholars in the field, the event will also include
stimulating workshops on specific focus areas. While the focus of the
event will be on media technologies, broadly defined, we invite
contributions from other areas of technology and from other academic
This colloquium aims to make a decisive intervention in this emerging
area of academic interest. It is part of the ADAPT project, a European
Research Council funded project investigating the history of television
production technologies through hands-on simulations. Research conducted
by ADAPT will form a key case study for the colloquium.
In order to facilitate productive discussion, numbers will be limited.
It is expected that papers presented will form the basis of an edited
collection focused on hands-on historical research.
We invite proposals for research presentations, panel discussions, and
historical equipment demonstrations. Presentations may take whatever
format is most appropriate, and we welcome approaches which deviate from
the traditional 20 minute lecture.
Please send a brief proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org by 28 August 2015.
* Andreas Fickers and Annie van den Oever, “Experimental Media
Archaeology: A Plea for New Directions” 2013
See full cal for papers: http://www.adapttvhistory.org.uk/