"History, Story, Narrative"
October 27-29, 2017 | Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Art & Art Center Kobe, Kobe, Japan
Historians are far from the only interested party in writing history. In a sense it is an interest we all share – whether we are talking politics, region, family birthright, or even personal experience. We are spectators to the process of history while being intimately situated within its impact and formations.
How, then, best to write it? Is it always the victor’s version? Have we not begun increasingly to write “history from below”, that lived by those who are not at the top of the power hierarchy? Are accounts of history always gender-inflected, hitherto, at least, towards men rather than women? Who gets to tell history if the issue is colonialism or class? How does geography, the power of place, intersect with history? What is the status of the personal story or narrative within the larger frame of events?
This conference addresses issues of writing history from literary and other discursive perspectives. That is to say: novels, plays, poems, autobiographies, memoirs, diaries, travel logs and a variety of styles of essay. One thinks of Shakespeare’s history plays, Tolstoy’s War and Peace, Shi Nai’an’s The Water Margin, Balzac’s La Comédie Humaine. It also addresses oral history, the spoken account or witness, the Hiroshima survivor to the modern Syrian migrant.
Which also connects to the nexus of media and history. The great “historical” films continue to hold us, be it Eisenstein’s October: Ten Days That Shook the World (1925) or Gone with the Wind (1940). We live in an age of documentaries, whether film or TV. There is a view that we also inhabit “instant” history, the download to laptop, the app, the all-purpose mobile. How has this technology changed our perception, our lived experience, of history? What is the role of commemoration, parade, holiday, festival or statuary in the writing of history?
The different modes by which we see and understand history, flow and counter-flow, nevertheless come back to certain basics.
One asks whether we deceive ourselves in always asking for some grand narrative. Can there only be one narrator or is history by necessity a colloquium, contested ground? Is national history a myth? And history-writing itself: is it actually a form of fiction, an artifice which flatters to deceive? What, exactly, is a historical fact?
MediAsia2017 Conference Photographs
Human interaction is at the root of all knowledge creation, and hence the great importance of the conference in introducing, testing and spreading ideas through challenging, rigorous and thought provoking discussion and debate. But beyond that, a conference is also a great chance to meet people from around the world, and to extend and grow ones’s professional network, and above all, to make friends.
It may be impossible to tell the story of the conference, or rather the many hundreds of interlocking stories that go to make up the conference, but the documentary photography in this slideshow aims to give a taster of the more serious academic side of the event, as well as the lighter side…
The Organising Committee of The Asian Conference on Media, Communication & Film (MediAsia) is composed of distinguished academics who are experts in their fields. Organising Committee members may also be members of IAFOR's International Academic Advisory Board. The Organising Committee is responsible for nominating and vetting Keynote and Featured Speakers; developing the conference programme, including special workshops, panels, targeted sessions, and so forth; event outreach and promotion; recommending and attracting future Organising Committee members; working with IAFOR to select PhD students and early career academics for IAFOR-funded grants and scholarships; and overseeing the reviewing of abstracts submitted to the conference.
- Dr Hannah Ho, University of Brunei Darussalam, Brunei Darussalam
- Dr Anna-Marie Jansen Van Vuuren, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
- Dr Alexander Klemm, Webster University of Thailand, Thailand
- Dr Chin-Pang Lei, University of Macau, Macau
- Professor Richard Letteri, Furman University, United States
- Dr Marcus Lima, State University of Southwest Bahia, Brazil
- Professor Xenia Negrea, University of Craiova, Romania
- Dr Jytte Holmqvist, Monash University, Australia
IAFOR's peer review process, which involves both reciprocal review and the use of Review Committees, is overseen by conference Organising Committee members under the guidance of the Academic Governing Board. Review Committee members are established academics who hold PhDs or other terminal degrees in their fields and who have previous peer review experience.
If you would like to apply to serve on the MediAsia Review Committee, please visit our application page.