The future of the past: Shining the light of history on the challenges facing principled humanitarian action

Prof Andrew Thompson, Cross-posted from Humanitarian Practice Network

Even as Red Cross and Red Crescent societies around the world mark the 50th anniversary of the adoption of the movement’s Fundamental Principles, there is a palpable sense that they are at risk. Threatened not only by the resurgence of state sovereignty and proliferation of non-state armed groups, the very universality of the principles may be in question. As the twenty-first century draws on, are the principles of ‘impartiality’, ‘neutrality’ and ‘independence’ still fit for purpose as Western influence wanes and the nature of conflict itself rapidly evolves?

ICRC blog post ThompsonThe Red Cross’ principles have marinated in a century and a half of humanitarian history. That history matters. The past helps us to understand how different types of threat to humanitarian principles have emerged from different types of conflict and geopolitical environments. History also sheds light on how, despite such obstacles, the principles came to acquire the public prominence and moral authority they currently possess. Continue reading

Call for all postgraduate students of slavery and antislavery

Call for all postgraduate students of slavery and antislavery

The Antislavery Usable Past Postgraduate Research Network
This new network will bring together postgraduate students of historic or contemporary slavery and antislavery studies from across the humanities and social sciences. An annual workshop will create research and learning networks; provide opportunities to debate current topics in the field; and provide a supportive environment where postgraduates can establish valuable contacts for the future. Continue reading

Call for Papers: “From memories to the future”

The Italian Sociological Association (A.I.S.), the European Sociological Association (ESA) and the Department of Political Sciences, University of Naples Federico II, propose an international conference on the following topic:

From memories to the future
Collective memories and horizons of expectations
in contemporary Europe
Napoli – June 4/5, 2015

With the participation of:

    • Labex “Le passés dans le présent”, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre
    • Art & Humanities Research Council “Care for the Future”, University of Exeter
    • Department of Social Sciences, University “Federico II”, Naples
    • Department of Economics and Statistics, University “Federico II”, Naples
    • Department of Human and Social Sciences, University L’Orientale, Naples
    • Department of Political and Social Sciences, University of Calabria, Rende

Continue reading

Report on AHRC/LABEX Franco-British Research Workshop 1

Northcott 1Fondation Royaumont, Val d’Oise, France 16-17 January 2015

By Michael Northcott, m.northcott@ed.ac.uk

A Franco-British Research Workshop of grant holders from the AHRC’s Care for the Future grant call and LABEX’s (Laboratory of Excellence) grant call ‘Les passes dans le present: histoire, patrimoine, memoire’ was held at the former Cistercian Abbey of Royaumont 20 miles north of Paris in January 2015. The Abbey was built in the thirteenth century and patronised by Louis XIV. It is situated in a large walled enclosure of gardens, water features and stone buildings. Over the centuries the monks instituted some remarkable hydrological features. Continue reading

Collaboration with Cluster of Excellence (labex) Pasts in the Present programme

AHRC Care for the Future: Thinking Forward through the Past and Labex Pasts in the Present: History, Heritage, Memory are holding a series of three joint workshops in 2015. The workshops seek to bring together researchers, ECRs and practitioners/professionals from project teams across the two programmes for two days of ideas exchange and discussion on shared themes.

The first workshop took place at the Royaumont Foundation near Paris on 16th and 17th January 2015. Please see the programme here.

AHRC logo                     labex-passes-present-logo

Call for Papers

Call for Papers

AHRC Care for the Future: Thinking Forward through the Past and Labex Pasts in the Present: History, Heritage, Memory are pleased to announce the second in a series of three joint workshops. The workshops seek to bring together researchers, ECRs and practicioners/professionals from project teams across the two programmes for two days of ideas exchange and discussion on shared themes.

Applications are now being accepted for the 2nd workshop, to take place at the Royal Society  on 22nd and 23rd April 2015. Please see the Care for the Future and Pasts in the Present Joint Workshop 2 – Call for Papers for more information and the short application form. The deadline for applications in 15th March 2015.

AHRC logo                     labex-passes-present-logo

Between cultural and natural heritage

marianna-dudleyby Dr Marianna Dudley, University of Bristol. Cross-posted from The Power and the Water: Connecting Pasts with Futures blog

Between cultural and natural heritage

Dudley 1 chateau

“Fairytale castle”, chateau Chenonceau. Photo: Marianna Dudley.

Chenonceau is a chateau worthy of a fairytale princess. It has turrets and gardens and galleries – and a river running through it. Built between 1514 and 1522 on the site of an old mill, it became the home of Diane de Poitiers, mistress of King Henry II. Diane loved the chateau, and built the bridge over the river. On Henry’s death in 1559, his widow Catherine de Medici demanded that Diane exchange Chenonceau for her chateau Charmont. Catherine built the galleries upon Diane’s bridge, and ruled France as regent from the building. Renaissance intrigues, not fairytales, brought this building to life.

Continue reading

ENTANGLED PASTS: 7 things you should know about the recent pasts of France and Britain, in the wake of the attack on CHARLIE HEBDO.

Prof Charles Forsdick (Leadership Fellow, AHRC Translating Cultures) and Prof Andrew Thompson (Leadership Fellow, AHRC Care for the Future)

CharlesForsdickWEBandrethompson

1. Charlie Hebdo is part of a long tradition of dissent in France. Its genealogy can be traced back to the satirical press at the time of the French Revolution. In February 2006, Charlie Hebdo shot to global prominence with its depictions of the prophet Mohammed. But since its launch, the anti-establishment magazine has had plenty of other targets in its sights.  Continue reading

Future Pasts? Sustainabilities in West Namibia

Professor Sian Sullivan, Bath Spa UniversitySian Sullivan
PI of Future Pasts
With Mike Hannis (BSU), Angela Impey (SOAS), Chris Low (BSU) and Rick Rohde (Edinburgh)

Perhaps inappropriately for a blog on ‘Debating Time’, I am late in submitting a post to introduce Future Pasts. My excuse is that the invitation to contribute a post was sent when I was living in west Namibia, some distance from internet access – at the settlement in this photo.

Sullivan 1

Please click on photos to enlarge

This is a place called !Nao-dais in Damara/≠Nū Khoen gowab (language), and Otjerate in oshiHerero. The family of Suro, the Damara woman with whom I have worked on and off for twenty years, have herded livestock at !Nao-dais for decades. Currently they are joined by a Himba pastoralist family from Kaokoveld to the north of this area, who inhabit the cluster of huts to the left of this image. Continue reading