Conference Program

Speaker guidelines


Wednesday, November 6
Venue: Sophus Bugge’s Building and Harriet Holter’s Building


12.00-12.30: Registration
Sophus Bugge’s Building


12.30-12.45: Welcome:
Helge Jordheim (Academic director, Kultrans) and Kyrre Kverndokk
Auditorium 3, Sophus Bugge’s Building


12.45-13.45: Keynote:
Kevin Rozario Can a Calamity Have a Culture?
Chair: Isak Winkel Holm
Auditorium 3, Sophus Bugge’s Building

13.45-14.15: Coffee Break


14.15-15.45: Sessions

Theodicy, Blame and Responsibility
Room 120, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair: Isak Winkel Holm

Henrik Svensen: “It’s not my Fault”: Natural Disasters and Their Causes.

Thor Holt: Priests in Despair: Theodicy in Henrik Ibsen´s Brand and Albert Camus´ The Plague


Stormy Weather
Room 124, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair. Ilan Kelman

Yngve Nilsen: The Development of a Norwegian Storm Warning System 1860-1914.

Kyrre Kverndokk: The Bride of Frankenstorm: The Rhetorics of Weather Extremes.

Ilya Parkins with Shelley Pacholok: Remembering Sandy: The Patriotic Temporality of American Fashion and the Politics of Disaster Recovery


Activism, Environmentalism and Cultural Theory
Room 140, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair: Anders Ekström

Guro Flinterud: Last Chance to See? Endangerment in the Media.

Coppélie Cocq: Indigenous Perspectives on the Commodification of Nature: Narrative Agency and Activism in Sápmi.

John Ødemark: Converging Apocalypses –“Indigenous” Cultures in the Amazon, the Nature of Culture and the Destiny of Humanity


15.45-16.00: Break


16.00-17.30: Sessions

Ethnographing Disaster Management
Room 120, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair: Henrik Svensen

Susann Ullberg: Material Matters in Disaster.

Kristoffer Albris: Is Disaster Risk Science Performative?  Ethnographic Thoughts on Calculated Uncertainties.


Disaster Imaginaries
Room 124, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair: Jerry Määttä

Agnes Bolsø: Looking into the Abyss: Considering What to Do. Relations Between Ideas about Ecological Disaster and Political Ideology.

Peer Illner: Il faut être absolument contemporain: Disasters and Contemporaneity

Erik Thorstensen: A Very Small Disaster: Cultural Studies of Nanotechnologies.


Japanese Disaster Culture
Room 140, Harriet Holter’s Building
Chair: Gunhild Borggreen

Aike P. Rots: Shinto and Disaster in Post-2011 Japan: Community Resurrection, Spiritual Care and Theodicy.

Anemone Platz: No Home to Return to – the Missing Link after the March 11 Earthquake.



Thursday, November 7
Venue: Georg Sverdrup’s Building (University Library)


09.00-10.15: Sessions

Recovery and Remembrance
Group Room 4
Chair: Aike P. Rots

Sara Bonati: The Role of the Global in the Local Disaster Recovery: From Media Amplification to Western Participation in Asian Tsunamis.

Constantin Canavas: “…What we Choose to Remember and to Forget.” Negotiating the Memorial of the Disaster.


The Apocalypse in Popular Cultur I
The Staff Room
Chair: Erik Thorstensen

Andreas Graae: The Culture of Contagion: Epidemic Response in 28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later.

Jacob Lillemose: They Keep Coming and Coming. The Physical Pressure of Zombies.


10.15-10.45: Break


10.45-12.15: Sessions

Picturing Disasters
Group Room 4
Chair: Kyrre Kverndokk

Susanne Leikam: Transnational Visual Cultures of Disaster: Tracing the Pictorial Repertoire of Early Modern European Earthquake Illustrations into the American West.

Harald Østgaard Lund: «Real Photo Postcards» from Fires and Floods.

Anders Ekström: Time and the Re-Discovery of Disaster.


The Apocalypse in Popular Culture II
The Staff Room
Chair: Agnes Bolsø

Jerry Määttä: Keeping Count of the End of the World: The Many Rises and Falls of Apocalyptic Disaster Stories.

Gaia Giuliani: Fears of Disaster and (Post-)Human Raciologies in European Popular Culture (2001-2013).

Gabriele Proglio: Memory and Re-Signification of the End in a Post-Human Perspective (2001-2013).


12.15-13.30: Lunch


13.30-14.30: Keynote:
Frida Hastrup: Troublesome Nature. Danger and Tropical Resources.
Chair: Kyrre Kverndokk
Auditorium 2


14.30-14.45: Break


14.45-16.15: Plenary session

“This is what they did to us”: Race and Gender in the Construction, Destruction, and Reconstruction of Pinhook, Mo.

Auditorium 2
Chair: Coppélie Cocq

Elaine Lawless: Gendered Perceptions of Place: The Pinhook, Missouri, Story of Building a Town and Losing It.

Todd Lawrence: Urbanormativity and Black Invisibility in the Destruction of Pinhook, Mo.

Film: "Taking Pinhook"


16.15-16.00: Coffee Break


16.30-17.30: Keynote:
Diane Goldstein. “Down Goes All the Men”: Narratives and Counter-narratives in the Construction of a Small Town Disaster.
Chair: Torunn Selberg
Auditorium 2


19.00: Conference dinner
For participants with paper 
At Brasserie France, Øvre Slottsgate 16


Friday, November 8
Venue: Georg Sverdrup’s Building (University Library)


09.00-10.00: Keynote:
Ursula Heise: Slow Disaster: Endangered Species and the Rule of Law.
Chair: Ander Ekström
Auditorium 2


10.00-10.15: Coffee Break


10.15-11.45: Sessions

Disasters and Art
Room 1
Chair. Susanne Leikam

Line Marie Thorsen: Art and Acute Action: Art as Articulations of Public Concerns in the Wake of the Great Earthquake of North-Eastern Japan

Gunhild Borggreen: Drawing Disaster: Documentary Manga on the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake.


Disaster Management as a Regime of Knowledge I
Room 2
Chair: Ilan Kelman

Christian Webersik: Making Information and Communication Technology Relevant for Disaster Preparedness and Management.

Jacqui Ewart and Hamish McLean: Hindrance or help? A model for the Involvement of Politicians in Communicating with the Public During Disasters.

Hideyuki Shiroshita: The History of Disaster Management in Japan: Why Japanese People had not Started Non-Technical Disaster Management in 1960.


11.45-12.45: Lunch


12.45-14.15: Sessions

Disasters in Medieval and Early Modern Europe
Room 1
Chair: Harald Østgaard Lund

Marina Montesano: The Narrative Of The Black Death And The Quest For Meaning In Late Medieval Sources.

Erling S. Skaug: Catastrophism in Italian Fourteenth- Century Art History.

Katrin Pfeifer & Niki Pfeifer: Representations of Natural Disasters in Early Modern Poems.


Disaster Management as a Regime of Knowledge II
Room 2
Chair: Susann Ullberg

Ann Enander, Sofia Nilsson, Aida Alvinius & Susanne Hede:
Framing the Public in Crisis.

Ilan Kelman, JC Gaillard, Jessica Mercer & James Lewis: Learning from Island Histories and Narratives to Improve our Disaster Futures.

Mikael Linnell: Representations of Disaster in Emergency Preparedness Scenarios.


14.15-14.30: Coffee Beak


14.30-15.30: Plenary Lecture
Isak Winkel Holm: Humanistic Disaster Studies: Heinrich von Kleist as Paradigm
Chair: Anders Ekström
Auditorium 2


15.30-15.45: Break


15.45-16.30: Panel Discussion:
Helge Jordheim, Academic director, Kultrans, University of Oslo
Tine Ramstad, Head of Advocacy, The Norwegian Refugee Council
Kristin Sandvik, Director, Norwegian Centre for Humanitarian Studies/Peace Research Institute Oslo
Chair: Kyrre Kverndokk
Auditorium 2

Speaker guidelines

Keynote speakers: 45 minutes.

All other speakers: 20 minutes to present the papers, and 10 of discussion.

Bring your presentation on a memory stick. All rooms are equipped with computer, beamer, and loud speakers.

If you plan to use your own Mac, please bring an adapter.