Institute of Modern Languages Research
Memories of the Future
Keynote addresses: Dr. Malcolm Quinn and Prof. Alberto Abruzzese
From our current ‘after the future’ position, where utopias have been crushed under the awareness that ‘the myth of the future is rooted in modern capitalism’ (Bifo), our imagination persistently draws on an extensive repository of symbols, forms and technologies rooted in history, imagination and memory. Yet, utopian visions of the future loomed large in the modern age, often fuelled by spectacular advancements in technology, applied arts and industries. Even though sequential temporalities and cyclical views of the past have become forcefully questioned by new technologies, the past is still a reservoir, repository and treasure-trove of cultural and symbolic signification which continues to be revisited and reconstructed imaginatively by individuals and communities. The further into the future you look, the further back in time you seem to get…. The conference will address questions such as: is memory scrambled, reversed, reconstituted? Is the future a thing of the past? Is ‘no future’ the new future? How do ancient myths and narratives construct future scenarios? How are myths and histories re-worked in contemporary artistic practises of the future present?