Recent Opportunities


CFP: Spaces of Fear in the 20th Century City (EAUH 2018) (Rome, 29 Aug-1 Sep 2018)

Rome, 29.08. - 01.09.2018
Eingabeschluss: 05.10.2017

Session M28 EAUH 2018
Urban Renewal and Resilience. Cities in Comparative Perspective
14th International Conference on Urban History

Spaces of Fear in the 20th Century City

Chairs: Mikkel Høghøj (Aarhus University), Monika Motylinska (Leibniz
Institute for Research on Society and Space IRS, Erkner)

At first sight, a badly lit pedestrian underpass in a mass housing
estate, a city park in the night, a slum district dominated by gangs, a
horror theatre or a prison have little in common – but for being
'spaces of fear'.

Inspired by recent theories on ‘emotional geographies’, this session
aims to approach ‘fear’ as a historical phenomenon within the spatial
settings of 20th century cities. Though touched upon within disciplines
such as sociology and human geography, this relationship remains
relatively underexplored within the field of urban history.
By addressing different aspects, roots and shades of the tension
between fear and urban space, this session seeks to explore dynamics
and impacts of fear in the production of 20th century urban space. In
an urban context, fear has always been associated with certain types of
urban areas – from slum districts in the industrial city to mass
housing complexes in the periphery of the post-industrial city. Urban
segregation has increased tremendously during the 20th century,
materialising in suburban development as well as gated communities
around the globe. Such processes have often been interconnected with
issues of class, race and the fear of ‚otherness’ – and arouse in
relation to different political and social crises. It is to assume that
due to regional specifics, even similar urban settings might evoke very
different kinds of fear – for instance, when we compare the discursive
perceptions of mass housing estates in the East and West in the
post-war period. Yet, the patterns of urban fear are not limited to the
negative context – as many places of fascination with fear such as
dungeons as tourist attractions or horror theatres have evolved across
the 20th century.

We invite papers investigating 'spaces of fear' from different
perspectives and through different methodological and theoretical
approaches. Questions that papers might consider include:
• Which urban temporalities and cycles of fear can be identified in the
20th century? How are they intertwined with real and imagined danger
(e.g. fear of terrorism or epidemics)?
• How did cities themselves trigger fear? How was this reflected in the
mass media and popular culture?
• What gender issues occur in an urban context of fear?

Thus, by addressing different facets of fear, this session seeks not
only to uncover new political, social and cultural dimensions of the
20th century city, but also to further enhance dialogue between urban
history and emotional history.

Keywords: fear; urban segregation; slum districts; mass housing;
emotional history; emotional geography

Paper proposals can only be submitted online, via the EAUH2018 website.
To submit a paper proposal, registration is required
Abstracts should not exceed 3000 characters
Deadline for paper proposals submission: October 5th, 2017
Notification of acceptance: December 1st, 2017

SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Fund at The Chicago Community Foundation for its operating support.
Society of Architectural Historians
1365 N. Astor Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610
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