Conference 2018

Call for Papers for the Third Historical Fictions Research Conference

Dates: February 24th and 25th 2018

Location: Premier Inn, Trentham Gardens; Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire

Proposals for papers are invited for the third conference. There is no theme, but aspects of local interest include ceramics, the Potteries, mining, and garden history.

Keynote speakers:

Jerome de Groot, Public History, University of Manchester

Caroline Sturdy-Colls, Genocide Archaeology, Staffordshire University


The conference is now confirmed but there are places left:

Extended deadline is January 1st 2018.

Twitter: @HistoricalFic

Facebook Group: Historical Fictions Research Network

Registration: is through eventbrite which charges a booking fee: 

Booking for the conference

  • Full price: £68 + £4.80
  • Concession (earnings below £20k p.a.) £33. + £2.64
  • Presenters only via Skype – please discuss in advance;£50   + £3.69

Historical fictions can be understood as an expanded mode of historiography. Scholars in literary, visual, historical and museum/re-creation studies have long been interested in the construction of the fictive past, understanding it as a locus for ideological expression. However, this is a key moment for the study of historical fictions as critical recognition of these texts and their convergence with lines of theory is expanding into new areas such as the philosophy of history, narratology, popular literature, historical narratives of national and cultural identity, and cross-disciplinary approaches to narrative constructions of the past.

Historical fictions measure the gap between the pasts we are permitted to know and those we wish to know: the interaction of the meaning-making narrative drive with the narrative-resistant nature of the past. They constitute a powerful discursive system for the production of cognitive and ideological representations of identity, agency, and social function, and for the negotiation of conceptual relationships and charged tensions between the complexity of societies in time and the teleology of lived experience. The licences of fiction, especially in mass culture, define a space of thought in which the pursuit of narrative forms of meaning is permitted to slip the chains of sanctioned historical truths to explore the deep desires and dreams that lie beneath all constructions of the past.

 We welcome paper proposals from Archaeology, Architecture, Literature, Media, Art History, Musicology, Reception Studies, Museum Studies, Recreation, Gaming, Transformative Works and others. We welcome paper proposals across historical periods, with ambitious, high-quality, inter-disciplinary approaches and new methodologies that will support research into larger trends and which will lead to more theoretically informed understandings of the mode across historical periods, cultures and languages.

You can find a list of last year’s papers here:

We aim to create a disciplinary core, where researchers can engage in issues of philosophy and methodology and generate a collective discourse around historical fictions in a range of media and across period specialities. Paper proposals consisting of a title and abstract of no more than 250 words should be submitted to:

The HFRN is sponsored by the Department of English and Media, Anglia Ruskin University.