Representations of Home 2017


Conflict and/or (Be)longing: Thinking with Stories and Images
School of Arts and Humanities, University of Lisbon, 16-17 November 2017

People not only think about stories; far more consequentially, people think with stories.
Arthur W. Frank, Letting Stories Breathe: A Socio-Narratology, 2010: 47.

The idea of home was something they lived so completely that they would have been at a loss to define it. But they would have known to be inadequate phrases such as: ‘It’s where you’re from,’ ‘It’s the place you live,’ ‘It’s where your family are.’
Deirdre Madden, One by One in the Darkness, 1996: 75.

In a world deeply marked by conflicts, persecutions, and scarce and/or poorly distributed resources, where some are driven out of their homes by war and poverty, while others feel that their (national) homes and ways of living are under threat, it is important to reflect about the notions of home that underpin personal and communal behaviour.

This conference focuses on representations of home in literature and the visual arts as the site where dynamics of conflict and/or (be)longing are played out. Home, particularly the imagined home, is a quintessential space of refuge from an external, unknown and potentially threatening, but also enticing, world. In Classical as in religious texts, home is both a place of departure and of quest and arrival, and throughout history the longing for home has persisted in the midst of the recurring challenges of belonging. Conflict has also elicited concerted efforts to find viable frameworks for coexistence, as epitomized by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), in the wake of the Second World War, or the Paris Agreement on Climate Change (2016), in response to current concerns about our collective home.

If homes are often sites of tension and conflict, to what extent does the imagined home shape, and to what extent is it shaped by, our experience of homes?

Keynote speakers:

Rhian Atkin (Cardiff University, UK)
Simone Lazaroo (Murdoch University, Australia)
José Pedro Serra (University of Lisbon, Portugal)

The conference language is English.

Organising Committee:
Teresa Casal
Ana Raquel Fernandes
Jean Page
Margarida Pereira Martins
Maria Luísa Falcão
Mariana Pires
Marjike Boucherie
Mary Fowke
Paula Horta
Sara Henriques
Zuzanna Sanches

Scientific Committee:
Teresa Casal
Ana Cristina Mendes
Ana Raquel Fernandes
Angélica Varandas
Diana V. Almeida
Isabel Alves
Isabel Fernandes
José Duarte
Luísa Flora
José Pedro Serra
Margarida Pereira Martins
Margarida Vale de Gato
Maria de Jesus C. Relvas
Marjike Boucherie
Mick Greer
Paula Horta
Rita Queiroz de Barros
Susana Araújo
Teresa Alves
Teresa Cid
Zuzanna Sanches