CRSF is about bringing together the most cu

First held in 2011, CRSF is an annual postgraduate conference designed to promote the research of speculative fictions including, but not limited to, science fiction, fantasy and horror.

Our aim is to showcase some of the latest developments in this dynamic and evolving field, by providing a platform for the presentation of current research by postgraduates. The conference will also encourage the discussion of this research and the construction of crucial networks with fellow researchers.

Watch this space for upcoming CRSF news.

Monday, 20 June 2011

CRSF 2011: Summary

The inaugural Current Research in Speculative Fiction [CRSF] conference was held on Saturday and, let us shelve modesty for a moment, was a great success!

It was a conference full of interesting and thoughtful papers which were delivered by enthusiastic delegates. If anyone has any doubts about the quality of postgraduate research into speculative fiction then I would suggest they take a good long look at the names on the conference schedule because it seems to me that the future of the field is in solid hands.

End of day conference photo. Unfortunately, a number of people had to dash off before this was taken. Still, a great bunch of assembled academics I'm sure you'll agree.

A massive thanks to all twenty-eight people who gave papers across eleven panels, thanks to those who chaired a panel over the course of the day, and to those who attended as delegates to learn more about speculative fiction and support others who were giving papers. Thanks to our two wonderful Keynote Speakers: Mr. Andy Sawyer and Prof. Adam Roberts who not only delivered enjoyable and fascinating papers, but who also attended papers all day and helped contribute to the fascinating and often insightful discussions that followed every panel. Thanks to everyone at the University of Liverpool, especially the staff in the School of English who helped us with all of the logistics and nitty-gritty elements of organisation. And a special thank you for my fellow team without whom the concept of a PG conference for science fiction, fantasy and horror, in Liverpool, would never have gotten off a page in my notebook and into the real world.

Feedback forms will be going out to everyone who's e-mail address is in our mailing list, but if you attended the conference please feel free to leave comments and suggestions for improvements on the blog or send them in via e-mail.

We always intended CRSF to be an annual event, but how the first one went was the deciding factor on whether such a concept was feasible. I think, given the overwhelming response from both the speculative fiction community, and the delegates who attended the conference, we can safely assume that CRSF will return in 2012!

So watch this this space....

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Conference Schedule 2011

Here is the schedule for CRSF 2011. It should be stressed that this is a draft schedule and may not reflect the content on the day of the conference. It  is, however, accurate as things stand.

CRSF 2011 - 18th June 2011 - The Rendall Building, The University of Liverpool

9.00-9.30  Registration, with refreshments. Foyer.
9.30-10.30 Keynote Lecture #1: 
Mr. Andy Sawyer (Science Fiction Foundation Collection Librarian; Director of MA in Science Fiction Studies, University of Liverpool): "The Strange Case of the Science Fiction Short Story", Theatre 2.
10.30-12.00 First Round of Parallel Panels.

Panel 1.1: History and Historicism, Theatre 2.
Chair: Erica Moore.

Harry Wood: External Threat Masks Internal Fears: British Invasion Literature, 1899-1914.

Elinor Taylor: History Repeating: John Sommerfield's May Day.

Glyn Morgan: Alternate History and Paratextual Instinct.

Panel 1.2: AI and Being (Artificially) Human, SR 124.
Chair: Chris Pak.

Amy Christmas: Augmented Intimacies: The Impact of Technoculture on (Post)Human Relations.

Mark McCleerey: Robots Playing Dress-Up: The Android as Child and Adult in Blade Runner and Teknolust.

Minwen Huang: The Poetical Evolution of Artificial Humans in Science Fiction.

Panel 1.3: Britain and the Universe, SR 125.
Chair: Clare Parody.

Chris Daley: Assessing the Semi-Cosy: John Christopher's The Death of Grass (1956) and the English Disaster Narrative.

Joseph Norman: Singing, Playing, Exploding and Dying: The Culture of "The Culture".

Tom Sykes: From New Worlds to a New World: Tracing the Influence of the New Wave of Science Fiction on Postcolonial Speculative Fiction.

12.00-13.00 Second Round of Parallel Panels.

Panel 2.1: Rethinking the Vampire, Theatre 2.
Chair: Giulia Sandelewski.

Lucy Arnold: "The children on the night. What music they make": Exploring Vampire, Victim and Infant in John Lindqvist's Let the Right One In.

David Mcwilliam: Dexter as 21st Century Vampire.

Panel 2.2: Media and Medium, SR 124.
Chair: Clare Parody.

David Moran: "Rorschach's Journal": The Construction of Narrative in Watchmen.

Aidan-Paul Canavan: Illustrating a Dream: An Analysis of the Storytelling in Gaiman and Vess's A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Panel 2.3: Spaces and Places, SR 125.
Chair: Chris Pak.

Amanda Dillon: The Postmodern Prometheus: Frankenstein Unbound and Possible Narrative Worlds.

Michelle Yost: The Quest for Terra Incognita: Looking for New Land, New Races, New Wealth in the Hollow Earth Narrative.

13.00-13.45 Buffet Lunch, Foyer.
13.45-14.45 Keynote Lecture #2:
Professor Adam Roberts (Royal Holloway, University of London): "The Comedian as the Letters SF", Theatre 2.
14.45-16.15 Third Round of Parallel Panels.

Panel 3.1: Dystopias and Utopias, Theatre 2.
Chair: David McWilliam.

Adam Wood: Synthesising the Synthetic, Realising the Real: The Dialectic of Reality and Illusion in Dystopian Literature.

Emma Filtness: Fay Weldon’s Chalcot Crescent: Ageing, Autonomy, Autobiography and Speculation in a Near-Future Dystopian Britain.

Roger Cotrell: Victims of the Future: Post-war Dystopian Science Fiction in its Context.

Panel 3.2: Language and Languages, SR 124.
Chair: Clare Parody.

Giulia Sandelewski: A Soothing Strangeness: the Role of Fantastical Semantics in Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors.

Lykara Ryder: The Ability to Speak Lunarian Is Not a Prerequisite.

Andrew Ferguson: Perils Pinnacled and Parts Impossible: The Necessary Failure of R.A. Lafferty.

Panel 3.3: The Science In Science Fiction, SR 125.
Chair: Glyn Morgan.

Erica Moore: The Myth of Progress in the Fiction of J.G. Ballard and Kurt Vonnegut.

Hallvard Haug: Teleologies of science: the singularity as technological narrative.

Marie Puren: The French science-fiction revival and the faith in a science-based society: Insights from the works by Jean de La Hire (1878-1956). 

16.15-16.30 Refreshment Break, Foyer.
16.30-18.00 Fourth Round of Parallel Panels.

Panel 4.1: Psychology and Reality, Theatre 2.
Chair: Andrew Ferguson.

Anna McFarlane: Adam Roberts and Collective Consciousness: The Politics of Psychology.

Matthew Colbeck: ‘A compartmentalised life’: coma, memory and the exilic self in Irvine Welsh’s Marabou Stork Nightmares.

Marcello Maggi: Adolf Wölfli: Testing the boundaries of the real.

Panel 4.2: Animalistic and Alternate Models of Thought, SR 124.
Chair: Minwen Huang.

Jennifer Cox: The Best in Beasts: Animal Healers and Heroes in the Short Stories of Cordwainer Smith.

Sandra Grötsch: The Animalistic Human - Shapeshifters in the Harry Potter-series by J.K. Rowling.

Chris Pak: ‘A Fantastic Reflex of Itself, An Echo, A Symbol, A Myth, A Crazy Dream’:
Gaian Anticipations and Terraforming as Landscaping Nature’s Otherness in Post 1960s Scientific Romance and Solaris.
Conference Ends.