Call for Papers: Making Space

The Association of Medical Humanities Conference 2021 will take place from 15-17 June,  and is hosted by the University of Limerick. The theme is ‘Making Space’.

Conference Theme

This conference invites practitioners, artists, scholars and patients to think about space in the broadest terms. This may take the form of considering the physical spaces in which healthcare is delivered or the contexts of public and private discourses about health and illness. It may take the form of considering how work in the Medical Humanities opens up critical understandings of space; its metaphors, configuration and geographies.

Choroidal Space
Credit: Choroidal space, human eye. Credit: Peter Maloca. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

This conference places a number of questions and considerations within the discussion of space. Formed of imaginary, psychodynamic, material and cultural conditions of production and reproduction, space simultaneously creates and is created by disciplines, experiences and bodies.  

Space is formed of the mainstream and the liminal. What spaces form and inform the meaning and valuing of those attributes, texts and reflections and the processes of life, death and dying of all working, inhabiting and passing through in times and places, locally, nationally and globally? How does this fit with the physicality and materiality of medicine, with individual bodies and systems, immunity illness and death? How might such critical considerations change perceptions, treatment of health and illness and of representations of conventional lives, stories and representations in spatial terms?

Medical Humanities has been through the various stages associated with disciplinary development and self-fashioning but its positioning remains complex and entangled, moving between its housing in both Humanities and Medical worlds. What configures this transdisciplinary space and what is its agency in generating spaces for discursive and new knowledges and practices? How are the binaries between stakeholders diffused? In taking stock and engaging in critical dialogue about how well the space between Medicine, Healthcare and the Humanities has been negotiated, we ask about equity of critical spaces across the fields? In forging new space, have scholars developed new methodological frameworks for reimagining space?

Podcast with British Medical Journal

Below is a link to a podcast interview about the conference with Dr Ciara Breathnach and Dr Brandy Schillace.

Call for Papers

We encourage several variations on the theme and welcome individual 20-minute papers and panel proposals (3 papers of 20 minutes duration followed by Q&A) that address but are not limited to the following:

  • Interdisciplinary Spaces and the Medical and Health Humanities.
  • Medical Education, Healthcare Education and curriculum space.
  • Mainstream and liminal spaces.
  • Body as space and in space, for instance othered and immigrant bodies; dying and dead bodies.
  • Spaces in visual, verbal and sensory texts and objects.
  • Geographical life course spaces: from cradle to grave.
  • Making space for Alternative and Complementary health.
  • Configuring and refiguring space.
  • Space as communication and negotiation.
  • Digital media spaces.
  • Public and private space.
  • Spaces for Medical Humanities publishing and activism.

A special journal edition on Death and Dying will emerge as proceedings from AMH 2021.


Deadline for submissions is now closed (21 January 2019). The authors of the accepted abstracts have been notified by email.