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Conference - Art History in Settler States. Cultural Studies of the Colonies

Posted on Wednesday, 10th May 2017

Art History in Settler States will focus on developing new tools to respond to the various dynamics of settler-colonial societies that were part of the British Empire. Keynote speakers from five countries – Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Unites States and South Africa will guide this analysis.

The legacy of cultural studies has included a potential expansion of art histories beyond a geographic complacency, singular notion of heritage and time. In the birthplace of cultural studies, global art history in Birmingham studies the perspectives of artists outside the Euro-American academy. This conference focusses on what can be learned and written about art history in settler-colonial states. Taking the expansion of objects, methods, and the canon into account, how can we rewrite the art history of settler states?

The colonisation of these nations, defined at the time as virgin or empty land, sought to replace the Indigenous population in order to inhabit the land themselves. The Anglo model of settler-colonialism also colonised any prior settlers and thereby enforced a subsequent pattern of forced and voluntary migration. For these nations the settler is not a homogeneous or fixed figure, but one upon whom the history of settlement has been inscribed. We will explore comparisons to exploitation colonies like India, and to the problems of other settlements around the world.

For more information on the speakers and the project see:

The conference will take place in the Barber Lecture Theatre, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TS, United Kingdom from 23-24 May 2017.
The conference is free to attend and open to the public. Full details can be found here.

Contact details for further information: