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Until comparatively recently, the 1950s has been neglected and under
researched in comparison with other decades of the twentieth century. In
one sense most of us that we 'know' the 1950s and its familiar events and
cultural phenomena, such as the civil rights movement and Windrush, Bebop,
rock and roll, consumerism, corporate culture, the Beats, women's
magazines, the 'angry young men' and kitchen sink drama, McCarthysim and
the Cold War, the suburbs, television and the feminine mystique.
However, many contemporary researchers, writers, film-makers, musicians
and historians recognise that this familiarity needs unsettling and are
rethinking some of these clichÃ©d accounts of this period of our culture.
This is why the focus of this study day is just as much on 'revisiting' as
it is on 'the 1950s'.
We aim to re-examine some well-known cultural landmarks and draw parallels
with the present, as well as asking why our own early twenty-first century
scholars should be drawn to the middle period of the last century at this
precise moment in time. We will also be studying events and archives that
need to be integrated into our understanding of the period. Examples
include the diaspora and gay/lesbian/queer culture in the period.
Speakers include: Prof Mary Joannou (Anglia Ruskin University), Prof
Alison Oram (Leeds Met), Prof John Walton (Leeds Met), Prof Dave Russell
(Leeds Met), Dr Su Holmes (University of East Anglia), Dr Michael Bailey
If you have any queries please contact Dr Susan Watkins, Reader in
Twentieth-Century Women's Fiction and Postgraduate Coordinator, School of
Cultural Studies, on +44 (0)113 812 3375, s.watkins_at_leedsmet.ac.uk.
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Received on Tue Oct 07 2008 - 05:33:53 EDT