History, Indonesia, memory, mental health, Oral History, trauma

A Lifetime of Hearing Voices: Mental Illness, Trauma, and Oral Histories

person in grass field
Photo by Mash Babkova on Pexels.com

Submission by: Dr. Annie Pohlman

Amak Dahniar has heard voices, and sometimes seen people, that others cannot since she was in her early 20s. A few years ago, when Amak was in her early 70s, a psychiatrist at the hospital in the city near her home in the mountains of West Sumatra diagnosed her with paranoid schizophrenia. It was a diagnosis that meant very little to Amak; she doesn’t care for the psychiatrist, the hospital, or the medicines that she was given that made her feel sleepy.

For Amak’s children, however, the diagnosis gave a new name to their mother’s interactions with voices, visions and dreams. The voices who speak to their mother are hallucinations, the signs only she can divine that others in the village mean her harm are delusions.

Annie Pohlman and her colleagues from Andalas University in West Sumatra first interviewed Amak Dahniar as part of a project investigating oral histories of trauma in that province.  Continue reading “A Lifetime of Hearing Voices: Mental Illness, Trauma, and Oral Histories”

Art, film and visual cultures, French, Humanities, trauma

Empty Gallery, HK: “Times Like These: Philippe Grandrieux in Hong Kong”

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Screenshots from Philippe Grandrieux’s The Scream (4:3 Film). Copyright Philippe Grandrieux

Submission by: Prof. Greg Hainge

Running until 30th November, 2019, Empty Gallery in Hong Hong will host an exhibition of works by French film director, screenwriter, and artist Philippe Grandrieux called “The Bare Life“.  With a career spanning over forty years, Grandrieux’s work combines elements of the experimental and horror genres, providing the viewer an experience rich in sensory and psychological depth.

The curator notes that Grandrieux’s “The Bare Life” occupies “a liminal space between dream and nightmare, these works represent Grandrieux’s most distilled inquiry yet into a set of themes which have consistently haunted his cinematic research: the search for a pre-linguistic form of expression, the simultaneous primacy and unknowability of the human body, and the radically transpersonal nature of affect.”

Continue reading “Empty Gallery, HK: “Times Like These: Philippe Grandrieux in Hong Kong””

French, History, Humanities, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature, Novels, Poetry, Women

Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama to present at International Yukio Mishima Symposium in Paris

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Shirou Aoyama [Public Domain] via Wikipedia Commons
Submission by: Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama

From the 21-23 November 2019, Paris-Diderot University will host an international symposium on the Japanese writer Yukio Mishima. The symposium is entitled “50 Years After: Another Mishima?” The author, who died in a shockingly dramatic manner after a failed coup attempt in 1970, was also a poet, playwright, actor, model, and film director, and is considered one of the most important Japanese authors of the 20th century. On the 50th anniversary of his death, experts from around the world will converge in Paris to revisit his works with fresh eyes.

The symposium organisers noted that too often, Mishima’s work is read through a biographical prism, which results in his texts being surrounded by an air of seriousness. Fifty years on, by reassessing Mishima’s work, the symposium hopes to establish an inventory of criticism, to review translation or retranslation projects, and to examine the most playful and ambiguous aspects of this work. Ultimately, to present “another Mishima”.

Continue reading “Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama to present at International Yukio Mishima Symposium in Paris”

cultural history, Humanities, Music, Popular Culture, Sound Studies

Ex:Centrics Series: Scott Walker and the Song of the One-All-Alone

close up photo of gray electric bass guitar
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Submission by: Prof. Greg Hainge

Released earlier this month is the newest book in Bloomsbury’s Ex:Centric seriesScott Walker and the Song of the One-All-Alone by Prof. Scott Wilson.

This work focuses on Scott Walker, a prolific composer and lyricist, formerly of “The Walker Brothers”. Prof. Wilson’s text offers his readers a detailed interpretative commentaries of Walker’s best songs, as well as a sustained assessment of the work and career of Scott Walker. The publisher notes that Walker is “one of the most significant and perplexing artists of the late 20th and 21st century”, making this work important not only for those in the fields of music and sound study, but for those in popular culture studies, or simply for devotees of Scott Walker’s music and work. “Looking closely at [Walker’s] songs, this book also considers the wider political implications of his approach in its rejection of external authorities and common or consensual ideals” (Bloomsbury). Continue reading “Ex:Centrics Series: Scott Walker and the Song of the One-All-Alone”

Humanities, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature, Poetry, Women

Acclaimed Japanese Poet Hiromi Ito to visit University of Queensland

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Photo provided by Hiromi Ito

Submission by: Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama

Internationally acclaimed Japanese poet Hiromi Itō is one of Japan’s most important highly regarded poets working today, having won a number of prestigious literary awards since her poetry debut in late 1970s. Born in Tokyo, Itō travelled extensively to the USA, and eventually moving there in the 1990s, where she worked exploring new genres and subject matter for over two decades . In recent years, Itō has returned to Japan, where she is currently working as a Professor of literature at the prestigious Waseda University. Continue reading “Acclaimed Japanese Poet Hiromi Ito to visit University of Queensland”

Future, Humanities

Brisbane to host the 50th Academy of the Humanities Symposium – “Humanising the Future”

photo of bridge and buildings during golden hour
Photo by Valeriia Miller on Pexels.com

Submission by: Prof. Greg Hainge

Brisbane is proud to host the Australian Academy of the Humanities 50th annual symposium, which includes free public events, from 13-15 November 2019. The Australian Academy of the Humanities is Australia’s national body for the humanities, advocating for the contributions of art, culture, and the humanities make. As an organisation, the Academy of the Humanities provides a number of valuable services including,  independent and authoritative advice (including to government agencies) on policies, projects, research, and reports to ensure ethical, historical and cultural perspectives inform discussions regarding Australia’s future challenges and opportunities. The Academy also ensures that excellence in the humanities disciplines are recognised and promoted through international engagement and research collaboration. Continue reading “Brisbane to host the 50th Academy of the Humanities Symposium – “Humanising the Future””

cultural history, Discrimination, Immigration, LGBTIQ, memory, Spanish, trauma

Perceived Discrimination in Contemporary Australian Society: Dr. Sol Rojas-Lizana

wall with rainbow colors
Photo by Mac DeStroir on Pexels.com

Submission by: Dr. Sol Rojas-Lizana

Rojas-Lizana, Sol. The Discourse of Perceived Discrimination: Perspectives from Contemporary Australian Society. Routledge, 2019.

A new publication from Dr. Sol Rojas-Lizana, The Discourse of Perceived Discrimination: Perspectives from Contemporary Australian Society, is due for release on 4 October 2019. This book, which explores discrimination against two minority groups in contemporary Australia: LGBTIQ community and Spanish-speaking immigrants from the perspective of the victims, is somewhat timely in its publication. As Australian society becomes increasingly diverse, the voices of minority groups are no longer a distant rumble in the background. However despite changing social norms and community acceptance of groups such as LGBTIQ and foreign immigrants, unfortunately the experience of overt and casual racism and discrimination is still prevalent. Continue reading “Perceived Discrimination in Contemporary Australian Society: Dr. Sol Rojas-Lizana”