Interdisciplinary Perspectives’ Symposium: a Medical Humanities symposium supported by the Wellcome Trust

Symposium overview: Ideas of a ‘post-AIDS’ future have gained momentum in the global north despite the continuing effects of HIV/AIDS in the global south in particular. While assessing the ways in which ‘post-AIDS’ is being interpreted across a range of disciplinary and global contexts, this symposium asks how the cultural, historical and ethical insights from Medical Humanities work can facilitate approaches to ‘post-AIDS’ and the global health discourses circulated by, amongst others, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the World Health Organisation. Throughout, we foreground themes drawn from Medical Humanities, such as the role of language choice and biomedical terminology in global health discourses. Though a significant body of research on HIV/AIDS and global health exists, there has been little sustained attention to interdisciplinary perspectives by stakeholders despite how these discussions complement a range of disciplinary approaches, policy initiatives and treatment and prevention programmes. Alongside these perspectives, we engage with the current global health moment by addressing the 2015 benchmark year for the United Nations 2000 Health Development goal which aims to ‘combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other diseases’. Overall, we ask how and why does a ‘post-AIDS’ future reflect a shift in global health?

Symposium speakers:

  • Andrew Bailey (Media: University of Leeds) will speak on ‘Shifting Perceptions of HIV and AIDS in Quebecois film’.
  • Paul Boyce (Anthropology and International Development: University of Sussex) will speak on ‘Modernity, Method and ‘MSM’: An Object-Oriented Ontology of an Intangible Sexual Subject’.
  • Katherine Furman (Public Health: London School of Economics) will speak on ‘Making sense of mono-causal and multi-causal accounts of disease in the case of AIDS’.
  • Phil Hutchinson (Interdisciplinary Studies and Philosophy: Manchester Metropolitan University) will speak on ‘Shame, Stigma and HIV’.
  • Shamira Meghani (English, University of Leeds) will speak on ‘Fictionalising Shame: My Brother…Nikhil and Hindi Cinema’s Post-AIDS Filtration’.
  • Cormac O’Brien (English: University College Dublin) will speak on ‘AIDS Nostalgia and Irish Theatre’.
  • Gráinne O’Connell (English: University of Sussex) will speak on ‘Unsettling ‘Post-AIDS’ Rhetoric: Global Health and the Affective Economies of AIDS Narratives from India and South Africa’.
  • Monica Pearl (English: University of Manchester) will speak on ‘Talking about AIDS: Conversation, Culture, and Queer Kinship’.
  • Nigel Richards (NGO policies: BHA Leeds Skyline) will speak on ‘Policy Initiatives and HIV Prevention in England’s African communities’.
  • Marsha Rosengarten (Sociology: Goldsmiths, University of London) will speak on ‘A speculative proposition for doing novel things with ‘the problem of the poor dosing adherer’ and an associative shift in the obligations of disciplinary practice’.
  • Simon Rushton (Politics: University of Sheffield) will speak on ‘Turkeys talking about Christmas? Examining discourses around the Post-AIDS Global Health Architecture’.
  • Liz Walker (Social Work: University of Hull) will speak on ‘Post-AIDS’: Problematising the discourse of change’.

Venue and date: Friday February 27th 2015 at the Leeds Centre for Medical Humanities (at the University of Leeds)

Time: Coffee/tea/refreshments from around 9am with the symposium running from 9.30am-6pm. Lunch is also provided during the day.

***There is no fee to attend but please register with the organiser to attend***

Organiser: Dr Gráinne O’Connell


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