British Academy Conferences
British Academy Conferences bring together leading and emerging scholars from around the world to present and discuss new research in the humanities and social sciences. Held at the British Academy and universities across the UK, these landmark events offer students, scholars and specialists a chance to expand their networks and learn about the latest developments in their field.
19 Mar 2020
The social intellectual: experience and thought in the Middle Ages
This international conference explores the organic relationship between lived experience and academic/religious thought, beginning from the position that intellectual activity and social experience were closely intertwined in the medieval period.
6 - 7 Apr
Ancient plaster: casting light on a forgotten sculptural material
This conference explores plaster as a material in its own right and addresses the contentious question of its use in life-casting.
2 - 3 Jul
‘…In or about 1970…’: artists, writers, and feminist thought
Fifty years later we consider how the arts shaped the Anglophone 1970s women’s movement and how the legacy of that relationship resonates today
7 - 8 Jul
Roberto Gerhard (1896–1970): reappraising a musical visionary
This conference marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Roberto Gerhard in 1970.
21 Jul 2020
Terror from the right: forms, function and future
As far-right violence grows in both volume and visibility globally, this timely symposium takes a close look at its core aspects.
22 - 23 Jul
Quentin Skinner's 'Meaning and Understanding' after 50 years: interdisciplinary perspectives
Quentin Skinner's 1969 essay 'Meaning and Understanding in the History of Ideas' was a groundbreaking challenge to textual interpreters. This conference will critically examine the essay and it's legacy.
10 - 11 Sep
Cut-Ups@60: an anniversary of unlimited potentials
Cut-Ups@60 explores a landmark in cultural history: the 60th anniversary of the cut-up methods launched in Paris and developed in London by Brion Gysin and William Burroughs.
6 - 7 Oct
Menstruation: representing experiences from the Global South and North
The conference brings together a range of experts from the Global South and North, focusing on the representation of menstruation and menstrual stigma across a range of disciplines, geographic areas, and menstruators’ experiences.
24/01/19 - 27/01/19
Mieczysław Weinberg: east and west
This conference and associated concerts brings together scholars and practitioners from east and west to reconsider the composer Mieczysław Weinberg's multiple identities.
20/03/19 - 21/03/19
Song beyond the nation: translation, transnationalism, and performance
This conference takes four major poets – the Persian Hafiz, the German Heine, the American Whitman, and the French Verlaine – and examines how their verse has been set by composers, not just within their own national traditions, but, most crucially, by musicians from other cultures.
29/04/19 - 30/04/19
Sovereignty: a global perspective
What does sovereignty mean in a global world? Taking a long-term historical and global view, this conference will consider both theoretical and applied perspectives on one of the most controversial political concepts of our time.
16/05/19 - 17/05/19
Child marriage in forced migration: social processes in-flux
During this conference, migration theorists, anthropologists, human geographers, development specialists and others will examine the impact of forced migration on child marriage.
4/07/19 - 5/07/19
The alphabet of universal grammar
Laws of nature are written in nature’s alphabets. Linguistics faces the fundamental problem that syntax is better understood than the alphabet that underpins it.
18/07/19 - 19/07/19
This conference will examine the ‘textuality’ of homelessness across a range of areas, bringing together activists, journalists, artists, academics, and people who have personal experience of homelessness.
1/08/19 - 2/08/19
New lives, new landscapes: rural modernism in 20th century Britain
This conference will consider how twentieth-century rural landscapes became modern or modernist, what this meant for how the countryside and rural life was understood and experienced,
5/09/19 - 6/09/19
Carol Ann Duffy: the legacy of the Laureateship
2019 sees the close of the first UK Poet Laureateship held by a woman, the contemporary British poet, Carol Ann Duffy. This conference evaluates the significance of her life and career in terms of their literary and political legacies, and their importance for gendered and sexual identities. It will debate …
12/09/19 - 13/09/19
Narratives of old age and gender
By addressing representations of both ageing masculinity and femininity, we ask how gendered cultural narratives can be crucial for gerontological debates and how studies of gender are enriched by attending to old age.
9 Mar 2018
Challenges to Judicial Independence in Times of Crisis
Judicial independence is increasingly under threat. Judges are being portrayed as the ‘enemies of the people’ and governmental interference is becoming routine. This international, interdisciplinary conference will identify threats to judicial independence, and investigate how they can be protected against.
31/05/18 - 1/06/18
Burckhardt at 200: The Civilization of the Italian Renaissance reconsidered
This conference will task an interdisciplinary team of scholars of Renaissance studies, as well as of Jacob Burckhardt (1818-1897) himself, to interrogate both the Swiss historian’s own agenda as well as the contemporary validity and hermeneutic helpfulness of the label ‘Italian Renaissance’.
7/06/18 - 8/06/18
Global Neoliberalisms: Lost and Found in Translation
This conference addresses questions about neoliberalism’s intellectual (and other) origins, and why it came to play such a powerful role across the globe. It will develop and extend new work which seeks to understand the rise of multiple neoliberalisms as ideology and practice.
13/09/18 - 14/09/18
Alcohol and Humans: A Long and Social Affair
Humans have a long association with alcohol in both social and ritual contexts that invariably gets overlooked in discussions of the medical effects of overconsumption. This conference offers a broad multidisciplinary exploration of the rich history of alcohol use by humans and our closest relatives.
11/10/18 - 12/10/18
Biblical Traditions in the Qur’an
Understanding the Qur’an’s intimate engagement with Biblical and Biblically based traditions has re-emerged as a pivotal scholarly challenge. The conference will gather an interdisciplinary group of specialists in order to create a comprehensive image of the current state of our understanding of the Qur'an's intimate engagement with Biblical and Biblically …
29/11/18 - 30/11/18
How Maoism was Made: Analysing Chinese Communism beyond the Totalitarian Lens, 1949-1965
This conference will bring together historians of the People’s Republic of China and the USSR to examine new perspectives on the Chinese revolution, life under socialism, and the establishment of a new political order after 1949.
9/02/17 - 10/02/17
Vulnerability and the Politics of Care: Cross-Disciplinary Dialogues
The words ‘vulnerability’ and ‘care’ are increasingly used to describe everything from economies to ecosystems, health to human rights. Vulnerability is a fundamental aspect of the human condition, giving rise to the need for care.
27/04/17 - 28/04/17
New Light on Tony Harrison
This landmark conference will illuminate previously neglected aspects of the work of Britain’s greatest living poet. An international and transdisciplinary team will analyse Harrison’s more recent creativity,
15/06/17 - 16/06/17
The Anglosphere and its Others: The ‘English-speaking Peoples’ in a Changing World Order
This conference will explain and interrogate the Anglosphere concept in the light of Brexit. It will examine the utility of the Anglosphere for policy-makers by analysing its historic origins and contemporary manifestations.
21/09/17 - 22/09/17
Defending the Faith: Religious and Secularist Apologetics in Twentieth-Century Politics
9/11/17 - 10/11/17
Faces of the Infinite: Neoplatonism and Poetics at the Confluence of Africa, Asia and Europe
The conference is intended to generate the first comparative overview of the extent to which Neoplatonist philosophy has permeated poetic forms, styles, themes and figurative language as well as poetic theory in seven principal languages of the greater Mediterranean region, from late antiquity to the modern period.
7/12/17 - 8/12/17
Tracing the Relationship between Inequality, Crime and Punishment: Space, Time and Politics
Inequality is receiving increasing attention from social scientists and policy-makers alike. Whilst criminal justice scholars have long recognised that levels of inequality correlate with rates of crime and punishment, the causal mechanisms underlying these correlations are less well understood.
7/03/16 - 8/03/16
Empathy neuroscience: translational relevance for conflict resolution
This conference brings together empathy neuroscience research to tackle a key translational challenge: its relevance for conflict resolution.
28/04/16 - 29/04/16
Ariosto, the Orlando Furioso and English culture, 1516-2016
April 2016 marks the fifth centenary of the publication of the first edition of Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso. To celebrate this landmark centenary a team of international scholars will discuss Ariosto’s poem through a consideration of editions and translations; critical reception; rewritings and adaptations in different media, in particular opera.
24/05/16 - 26/05/16
Civil Rights documentary cinema and the 1960s: transatlantic conversations on history, race and rights
This conference - held in memory of American social activist, politician and leader in the civil rights movement Julian Bond (1940-2015) - brings together documentary filmmakers, activists, and film, history and media scholars.
28/06/16 - 29/06/16
Distant and neglected voices: women in the history of linguistics
This conference will consider the contribution of women as linguists in different linguistic and cultural contexts, both European and non-European.
17/10/16 - 18/10/16
Using Behavioural Science to Target Prolific Criminals
Detecting prolific criminals has the potential to pay dividends in terms of cutting crime rates and reducing future victimisation. While forensic science can be used to apprehend these individuals, physical forensic evidence is left at only the minority of crime scenes, and, in some countries, the processing of such evidence …
26/03/15 - 27/03/15
Aliens, foreigners and strangers in Medieval England, c. AD 500-1500
This conference takes a multidisciplinary approach to the presence and treatment of foreigners in England across the medieval millennium.
21/05/15 - 22/05/15
Splendid innovations: the development, reception and preservation of screen translation
This conference brings together translation scholars, film historians and archivists to piece together the untold history of screen translation from the silent period to the early talkies.
18/06/15 - 19/06/15
How terrorist groups ‘learn’: innovation and adaptation in political violence
This conference explores how terrorist groups have learnt from each other and/or from history by mimicking tactics or actively pursuing inter-organisational co-operation.
9/07/15 - 10/07/15
The Race Relations Act @ 50
This conference reflects on the Race Relations Act, introduced 50 years ago in 1965.
8/09/15 - 9/09/15
African multilingualism: motivations, modalities, movement and meaning
With multilingualism as a major research theme for linguistics and social sciences, this conference places Africa at the centre of cross-disciplinary research.
27/03/14 - 28/03/14
Slaveries old and new: the meaning of freedom
This conference provides a multidisciplinary overview of slaveries old and new and explores the contested meanings of freedom and slavery in a variety of contexts including migration, debt, marriage, imprisonment.
9/04/14 - 10/04/14
Transforming information: record keeping in the Early Modern world
Between 1500 and 1800, documentary records proliferated on an unprecedented scale. Bringing together historians, literary scholars and archivists, this interdisciplinary conference explores the incentives behind this surge in record-keeping in a range of global contexts.
13/05/14 - 14/05/14
Parliaments and minorities: ethnicities, nations and religions in Europe, 1848-1948
This conference explores the rise and impact of nationalism on parliaments and political organisation.
10/07/14 - 11/07/14
War: an emotional history
This two-day conference seeks to explore the degree to which war impacted upon the emotional world of those who lived through times of conflict.
10/09/14 - 11/09/14
After 2015: development and its alternatives
The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) will expire in 2015, with mixed results. This conference takes a social and political perspective on why development fails, and how local knowledge might inform a post-MDG environment more sensitive to those structurally disadvantaged by the global economy.
14/02/13 - 15/02/13
The production and circulation of printed books in the Occident and Orient, from the accession of the Tang Dynasty (c.618) to the first Industrial Revolution
This conference aims to open the conversation between economic historians and historians of the book and stimulate publications and research in a truly global history of knowledge formation from the Tang Dynasty to the Industrial Revolution.
26/03/13 - 28/03/13
Sensory substitution and augmentation
This conference brings together the neuroscientists and psychologists who are developing sensory substitution and augmentation devices and studying the brains and behaviour of subjects who use them.
23/04/13 - 24/04/13
Tracing networks: communicating knowledge in antiquity and the digital age
In this conference, archaeologists and computer scientists present new approaches to understanding knowledge networks in the ancient world and present day.
11/06/13 - 12/06/13
Uses of the past in past societies: a global perspective
This conference convenes an international group of experts to ask how societies have debated, engaged with and refashioned their pasts.
9/07/13 - 10/07/13
When the party's over: the politics of fiscal squeeze in perspective
This conference explores how the politics of fiscal squeeze has played out in different times and places, looking in depth at nine cases of fiscal squeeze at different times and places, exploring what conclusions we can draw for current debates about fiscal squeeze from earlier cases in other democracies.
26/09/13 - 27/09/13
The cognitive revolution 60 years on
Sixty years ago, the young Noam Chomsky put forward a new theory of language which radically altered our understanding of language and cognition.This conference assesses the situation in modern linguistics and cognitive science six decades on.