anti-tales: a continuance

F Minus, 2010-05-15

‘Moral: If you live like humans do, it will be the end of you.’

(Quoting, of course, James Thurber.)

I’ve written before scattered thoughts about the intriguing phenomenon known as the anti-tale. And will, it seems, be writing about it again. Regular and casual readers of Paradoxes may be interested to know that a lot of other people are thinking about it, too. And writing.

And talking.

In fact, they’re holding a conference.

Anti-Tales: The Uses of Disenchantment will gather at the University of Glasgow to explore the meanings and manifestations of the anti-tale in literature, film, story, and just about anywhere else they can think of.

Among the presenters will be Paradoxes’ own Mr. Pond. Right now I’m starting to slog through research for my essay. Since I’m presenting on James Thurber, it isn’t as bad as it sounds.

Below you’ll find the semi-official press release, with details and contact info and links to more details. More important than simply getting attendees is getting people thinking about anti-tales. Reading, researching, and even writing anti-tales. So read the press release.

And, while it doesn’t officially say this, of course you can comment or contact me with questions.


Please consider joining us for an upcoming conference exploring anti-tales. It will be held at the University of Glasgow, 12-13 August 2010 (Thurs-Fri).

The anti-tale is the fairytale’s evil twin, subverting and reorganizing the more traditional form. Despite its growth in prominence over the past century, it has received little critical attention. This conference and resulting publication attempt to begin filling that gap, and hope to inspire further critical research of anti-tales.

John Patrick Pazdziora

Anti-tales: The Uses of Disenchantment

An interdisciplinary research forum and subsequent publication of proceedings (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011) based around the currently under-researched notion of the ‘anti-tale’.

The conference will take place Thursday 12th and Friday 13th, August 2010

between 9am-5pm both days

at the Yudowitz Seminar Room in the Wolfson Medical Building at the University of Glasgow.

There will also be a couple of evening events, including a drinks reception.

Our plenary speakers are Dr. Anna Kérchy (Senior Assistant Professor, University of Szeged) and Professor Aidan Day (Professor of English at the University of Dundee).

Our resident artist is Robert Powell (Edinburgh College of Art).

Entry is free.

We have panels from a diverse range of disciplines including scholars and students from: Literature, History of Art, Media/ Film Studies, Philosophy, Creative Writing, and Geography. Our call for new research on ‘anti-tales’ is intended to provoke creative, imaginative responses, and we are looking forward to a promising conference.

To view the full programme and to register, visit faculties/arts/graduateschool/events/anti-tales/

Direct all inquiries to David Calvin (University of Ulster) and Catriona McAra (University of Glasgow): anti tales [at] google mail [dot] com (omitting spaces and inserting relevant symbols).

Please forward this message to all who may be interested.

2 thoughts on “anti-tales: a continuance

  1. Sounds fascinating! Flying to the UK isn’t in the books for us right now, but I’ll look forward to a post-conference report.

    It’s amazing how much humor Thurber managed to mix with the weird and sorrowful.

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