Distinguished Visitor Lectures 2014/15

Roundtable on Archival Research

Chaired by Professor Jim Shields 

Date: Wednesday, 22nd April

Participants:   Professor Maria Estorino, University of Miami, USA, Dr Ana Vera Estrada, Instituto Cubano de Investigaciones Juan Marinello, Cuba, Dr Stefan Manz, Aston University, Dr Stephanie Panichelli-Batalla, Aston University

More information available HERE.

Oral History and Cuba

Oral History and Cuba: A Changing Society?

One-day international workshop with invited speakers

Date:  Thursday, 23 April 2015

Time:  9.30 am to 5.15 pm. Followed by a wine reception

Cost:    Academics and the general public - £25  

            PG Students - £15

            Free for participants, Aston staff and students

Room MB234, Main Building, Aston University
                Birmingham B4 7ET

As Paul Thompson states in the Preface of his landmark work Voices of the Past, 'the richest possibilities of Oral History lie within the development of a more socially conscious and democratic history' (2000, vi). In the Cuban context, oral history is a vital tool in understanding popular experience, and producing narratives of social change from below. Yet in this context, oral history has sometimes been a challenging experience for researchers, due to the ideological orientation of the Cuban Revolutionary government and the weight of 'official history', serving to narrow access for researchers, and the scope of the sayable for citizens.

This one day international workshop therefore seeks to break new ground, by bringing together academics who have conducted oral history research in Cuba or with Cubans living outside Cuba. It will also count with the presence of Professor Paul Thompson, founder of the Oral History society and founding editor of the journal Oral History, who will offer final remarks to close the day.

For more details and to book your place at this event, visit the official event page HERE.

 "Nailing some theses at language department's doors"

Prof. Ricardo Muñoz-Martín
Date: Thursday, March 26th, 2015
Time: 4.30pm - 6.00pm
Room: MB708B

Cognitive Science has shown that some of our basic ideas and constructs about language and communication are either misleading or empirically false. In this talk I will summarize some of these not-so-new insights on language that are challenging some deeply ingrained 'idees reçues': Languages do not exist. Meaning can never be transferred from one language to another. Comprehension is an active process, not totally aligned with language command. Context is not out there, but only in our minds. Culture is in the eye of the beholder. All these notions derive from a basic truth we have also always known: the divide between letters and sciences is deadly wrong.

This is a public lecture and all staff and students are welcome to attend.


"Translation and Popular Music: Fandom as Part of a Social Movement"

Dr Şebnem Susam-Saraeva (University of Edinburgh)
Date: Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014 
Time: 4pm - 5.30pm
Room: MB574 

This is a public lecture and all staff and students are welcome to attend.