Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Avant-Gardes Now! Symposium

This event has now finished. Please see our events website for details of upcoming events at Brookes.

Avantes Gardes Now

Who this event is for

  • Everyone


204 , John Henry Brookes Building, Headington Campus, Gipsy Lane site


'Avant-Gardes Now!' is a long half-day symposium which will be hosted by the Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre on Friday 1 May 2015. Organized by Dr Eric White and Dr Niall Munro, the symposium was formulated in part as a more specific response to the 2014 BAMS Conference 'Modernism Now!'. It seeks to address topics of interdisciplinary and international relevance to avant-garde studies and creative practice, on the one hand, and of specific relevance to the UK research and funding environment, on the other. The term 'Avant-Gardes' refers to a wide range of creative and scholarly endeavour, and the organisers generally apply it to practice and theory produced from the late-nineteenth century to the present day (though we are happy to be challenged on this reading). Topics for discussion include:

  • Avant-garde Theory and/or Practice
  • The 'nowness' (Jeztzeit) of avant-gardes
  • 'The' - 'Historical' - 'Avant-Garde': definition, periodisation, and problems of classification
  • Avant-garde(s): individuals and collectives ('group art')
  • Avant-gardes and disciplinarity
  • New trends in avant-garde studies and practice
  • Publishing, performance and dissemination of avant-garde work
  • Value and funding in avant-garde studies and practice

Our plenary speaker is the distinguished scholar, editor and writer Professor Adam Piette of Sheffield University, and our featured creative practitioner is the acclaimed Glaswegian poet Peter Manson. We have also assembled a series of panellists including eminent and emerging scholars.

Please click on the links to the right to download the full programme, speakers' abstracts, and a poster for the event.

Keynote speaker

  • Professor Adam Piette, Literature, University of Sheffield 
    Breton & Soupault’s Les Champs Magnétiques and the First World War


  • Professor David Cottington, Art History, Kingston University 
    The avant-garde's alternative professionalism
  • Professor Martin Iddon, Music, University of Leeds 
    Outsourcing Progress: on conceptual music
  • Dr Julia Jordan, Literature, University College London 
    Accidental Narratives: Remaking the 60s Avant-Garde
  • Dr Sam Ladkin, Literature, University of Sheffield 
    Avant-gardes against value
  • Dr Nikolaj Lübecker, Film, St. John’s College, University of Oxford 
    Into the Dead End: Korine’s Trash Humpers (2009)
  • Dr Claire Warden, Drama, University of Lincoln 
    Can the avant-garde be performed?

Oxford Brookes Respondents

  • Professor Alex Goody, Professor Nathalie Aubert, Professor Paul Whitty

Poetry reading

Poetry reading by  Peter Manson, followed by a wine reception.