Upcoming Event: ‘Framing the Face: history, emotion, transplantation’- The AboutFace Project Launch, York, 25 October 2019

Date: 2.00pm-6.00pm, 25 October 2019

Location: The Hospitium, Museum Gardens, York YO1 7FR

You are warmly invited to the attend the AboutFace project launch on Friday 25 October, which will be held at the Hospitium in York’s Museum Gardens (further details are below).

Framing the face: history, emotion, transplantation
The AboutFace launch
The Hospitium, Museum Gardens, York YO1 7FR

25 October 2019
2.00pm – 6.00pm

● How do you feel about your face?
● Who would you be, without it?
● Would you donate your face, or that of your loved one?
● If not, why not?

Face transplants are complex and medically challenging with no guarantee of success. There have been fewer than 50 globally since 2005, though their cultural impact is profound.

Face transplants are ethically fraught: they transform the part of our body most associated with emotions, identity and social interaction. Media and public debate around face transplants raise questions about how society views ‘disfigurement’ and surgical intervention – especially in the age of the ‘selfie’.

Yet most discussions of face transplants focus on surgical issues, from new techniques to immunosuppressants. And their emotional meaning and effects, on individuals and their families, donor families, medical teams and society as a whole, have been neglected.

So how should we frame face transplants as surgical and social events? How do we evaluate their emotional impact, or assess their ‘risk’? And how far do social beliefs about beauty and disfigurement influence social and surgical perceptions?

Join us for a discussion of these themes, followed by a drinks-reception at the launch of AboutFace, a new interdisciplinary project funded by a UKRI Future Leaders project based in History at the University of York.

Cultural historian Fay Bound Alberti will be joined by Consultant head, neck and facial surgeon Daniel Saleh, clinical psychologist Sue Brown, writer Louisa Young, artists Lucy Burscough and Clare Whistler and James Partridge, founder of Face Equality.         

You can register for the event by emailing aboutface-project@york.ac.uk or via EventBrite