28–29 November 2014, Leeds
2014 is a significant year for commemorating and thinking through the legacies of major global catastrophes. This year marks the 30th anniversary of Bhopal Gas Disaster in India, the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide, and the 10th anniversary of the South Asian tsunami. While much attention is being paid to the centenary of World War I, we would like to counterpoint this by considering the politics of remembering, commemorating, and supporting long-term recovery in relation to a range of compound catastrophes that have deep colonial roots.
Given that Bhopal, Rwanda, and the Tsunami have all generated significant media interest alongside diverse forms of creative response (from art to social activism), this conference will explore how these and other postcolonial disasters have been defined and represented following the initial event. It will examine the particular challenges posed by different forms of disaster (industrial, environmental, social), and connect these with aid and reconstruction work across multiple sectors.
The conference will be public-facing, and to speak across diverse sectors and audiences. Featuring discussions and workshops on:
- Humanitarianism and global giving
- Disasters, photography, and the media
- Disasters in art, literature, and films
- Disasters, colonialism, and globalisation
- The Bhopal Medical Appeal and the Haiti Support Group
- State responsibilities and global justice campaigns;
- Slow violence and defining disaster