CfP: Written and Visual Representations of the World of Work „in and by the Working Class“ (Event: 09/2019, Amsterdam): DL: 05.09.2018

Third Conference of the European Labour History Network (ELHN) (Web), Coordinators: Timothy Ashplant, Nathalie Ponsard, Mike Sanders, and Luisa Veloso

Venue: International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam
Time: 19-21 September 2019
Proposals by: September 5th, 2018

The workshop intends to continue its reflection on the representations of the world of work „in and by the working class“, begun at the first two ELHN conferences (Torino, 2015; Paris, 2017). For the forthcoming third conference (Amsterdam, 2019) its focus will be on both written and visual representations, which constitutes an original approach insofar as these two fields of research are often separated. More particularly, this third phase of reflection will focus on the process of creation, or in other words the creative capacity of the workers: the capacity to write as much as the capacity to make workers‘ language visible through film, or to capture moments of work and/or life through photography or pictorial work – in the context of a transnational European history.

On the one hand, the workshop aims to deepen understanding of the conditions and spaces of individual and collective creative works, to decipher the modalities of co-construction at work with activists from other social milieux and with other models of writing, photography, film.

On the other hand, it aims to explore the reception of these creative works in the workers‘ world and in the dominant and „legitimate“ cultural fields.

Finally, through the analysis of the representations carried by these creative works, we will pose questions about their uses and their meanings. We will study their role in the memorial construction of this or that working-class community, as well as the representations and reinterpretations of social events. We will raise the question of their possible critical significance.

Beyond these three axes, the workshop also aims to conduct a methodological reflection on the most appropriate tools to interpret these creative works, and to study the ways in which they are collected and preserved.

The aim is therefore to continue the reflection based on a range of case studies from different cultural forms and European countries.

How to apply
Please send an abstract (max. 400 words) and a short academic CV (max. 400 words) to the coordinators. The proposal should include name, surname, current affiliation (if any) and contact details of the proponent.

Deadline for abstracts submissions
Please send an abstract (max. 400 words) by September 5th, 2018. The outcome of the selection will be communicated in October 2018.

The Third Conference of the European Labour History Network (ELHN) will take place on 19-21 September 2019 in Amsterdam, at the International Institute of Social History.

Timothy Ashplant,
Nathalie Ponsard,
Mike Sanders,
Luisa Veloso,