INAUGURAL SYMPOSIUM: Thursday 15th November 2018
The Centre for Contemporary Legend inaugural event will be a symposium on folklore studies in the UK. This will be a one-day event, during which we will hold a small number of panels and workshop discussions, foregrounding the study of folklore as a subject in its own right. The full programme for the event will be available here closer to the time.
The purpose of the day is to generate discussion and debate about the study of folklore in higher education; what is needed, what is missing, and what you can offer.
The three core themes for the day’s discussion will be:
- Past, present and future of folklore studies – teaching
- Past, present and future of folklore research
- Archiving folklore, past and present
ANOTHER ENGLAND – PHOTOGRAPHY
Andrew Robinson has researched English folklore and calendar customs and has photographic work at exhibition standard of English customs which have never been displayed before. This project, entitled ‘Another England’, (examples pictured here) we aim to host an exhibition either as a standalone event, or for the duration of our proposed conference also – to enhance this as a multimedia, multidisciplinary centre holding events with broad appeal. This will hopefully lead to further development of research in this area with related publications, a re-visitation of Andrew’s photographic subjects and a potential future basis for exploration on film.
- FOLKLORE ON SCREEN CONFERENCE
- Our launch conference event would cover a number of areas related to folklore and folk-horror on screen, with an emphasis on ‘folk’, and British folkloric aspects – to include not only academic discussion of films and television with folkloric content, but also discussion of folklore itself (local history and legends, myths, calendar customs and so on) as a significant driving factor in the wider context of the public sphere. We are all folk, folklore takes many forms beyond traditional storytelling; contemporary and urban legends are propagated by popular culture and media, often affecting popular belief (a number of people take events in The Wicker Man (1973) as literal fact, modern day Druids cite wyrd 1970s television like Children of the Stones (1977) as inspirational), therefore it is important to encourage public discourse about the foundations of tales, legends and belief.
- We aim to bring attention to the phenomenon and significance of ‘wyrd’ media to the public and academia, not only of film and television but also to connect folklore in music, art, photography, local history and heritage and thus highlight links between a wide range of disciplines.
- At our events, we would like to (with appropriate consent), create short films of talks and Q&As, conduct interviews with visitors, and have a ‘wyrd tales’ booths to record our visitors’ own folkloric tales, memories or strange experiences (whether written, audio, video or upload using social media). In doing this we aim to harness new technology to make folklore relevant to contemporary audiences whilst also archiving new material for future research.
- There is huge potential for regional, national and even international media interest. Positive PR of the launch of the centre and the conference would mean a wide reaching impact.