29-30 May 2015
University of Kent at Canterbury (Grimond Lecture Theatre 3)
Skepsi’s Eighth Annual Interdisciplinary Conference
Sponsored by the Kent Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (KIASH) and the School of European Culture and Languages (SECL)
Disgust has received growing critical attention among researchers in fields as varied as literature, philosophy of art, biology, psychology or gender studies. It is universally experienced even if the object of disgust can vary greatly according to the cultures. With the neurosciences increasingly gaining attention from the humanities for their project of explaining cognitive states and processes with reference to the material brain, it is opportune to reflect upon those experiences which strike the pit of the stomach before the head. Key research questions that will concern us are: Why is disgust so appealing? What is the relationship between physical and moral disgust? Can disgust be explained with the help of the theory of evolution? How is the rhetoric of disgust mobilized in far-right ideologies? These questions will be examined from a variety of perspectives including psychological and psychoanalytical approaches, sociological and anthropological perspectives, the representation of disgust in the arts, philosophical and political approaches, natural sciences and theories of the body.