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What a Waste!

Representations of Waste in the Post-war (1945-1990)


Come and talk trash with us at this interdisciplinary graduate conference, which intends to connect the waste, wastefulness, and wastrels of the post-war period to imperative questions about how writers and artists can orientate themselves towards or away from catastrophe. 

Amidst contemporaneous concerns about peacekeeping, scarcity, and the potential for recovery, the object lessons of the post-war period have much to say to the precarity of life today. Yet literature, art, theatre, and film produced between the atomic bombings of 1945 and the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 exist in a specific geopolitical landscape.

Looking at waste from a period of recovery, technological acceleration and economic competition opens up space for viewing what has been lost, what remains, and what is kept out of view.

This conference will be held on Saturday 23 September 2023 in the Arts Lecture Theatre, University of St Andrews. All welcome.