CFP: ‘Cognitive Futures in the Arts and Humanities 2018’, Kent

Date: 1st – 4th July 2018

Location: University of Kent

Organisers: Melissa Trimingham and Nicola Shaughnessy, in association with the Centre for Cognition, Kinaesthetics and Performance.

Building on the conferences associated with the network Cognitive Futures in the Humanities in Bangor (2013), Durham (2014) and Oxford (2015), Helsinki (2016) and Stony Brook (2017) the 2018 conference aims once again to bring together a wide array of papers from the cognitive sciences, philosophy, literary studies, linguistics, cultural studies, critical theory, film, performance, theatre and dance studies, the visual and sonic arts, musicology and beyond. In accordance with the original purpose of the network, the aims of the conference are:

  • to evolve new knowledge and practices for the analysis of culture and cultural objects, through engagement with the cognitive sciences;
  • to assess how concepts from the cognitive sciences can in turn be approached using the analytical tools of humanities enquiry (historical, theoretical, contextual);
  • to contest the nature/culture opposition whose legacy can be identified with the traditional and ongoing segregation of scientific and aesthetic knowledge.

Topics relevant to the conference include (but are not limited to):

  • Cognitive neuroscience and the arts
  • Interdisciplinary methodologies
  • Cognitive poetics
  • Theory of mind
  • Conceptual blending
  • Cognition and narrative
  • Spectatorship and participation
  • Empirical aesthetics
  • The 4 Es
  • The science of creativity
  •  The social mind
  • Material culture

Submission details:

Please send 250-word proposals to by 30 November 2017. As well as 20-minute papers, we welcome contributions in a variety of formats, for example workshops, performance presentations, and posters. Abstracts should be included as Word file attachments. Please indicate clearly in your email whether your abstract is to be considered for a paper or as part of a panel, including the name of presenter(s), institutional affiliation(s) and email address(es). Proposers can expect to hear if their abstract has been accepted by 5 January 2018, and registration will open soon afterward.

Keynote Speakers:

  • Maaike Bleeker, Utrecht University
  • Margrethe Bruun Vaage, University of Kent
  • Eric Clarke, Oxford University
  • Amy Cook, Stony Brook University

Organising committee: Shaun May, Nicola Shaughnessy, Melissa Trimingham, Freya Vass-Rhee

Cognitive Futures in the Arts and Humanities Steering Group:

  • Amy Cook (Stony Brook University)
  • Karin Kukkonen (University of Oslo)
  • Peter Garratt (Durham University)
  • John Lutterbie (Stony Brook University)
  • Ben Morgan (University of Oxford)
  • Sowon Park (University of California, Santa Barbara)
  • Merja Polvinen (University of Helsinki)
  • Nicola Shaughnessy (University of Kent)

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