From Fear to Hope: Shifting narratives for art, social and human rights activism

Join us for an exploration into new narratives and frameworks for art, social and human rights activism guided by social research.

12 Jun 2019, 5.30pm to 12 Jun 2019, 7.30pm

8 West, 2.30, University of Bath

How can we reframe the debate on human and social rights?

Dr Ana Cecilia Dinerstein from the Department of Social & Policy Sciences (SPS), is thrilled to announce this Research Impact event, funded by the University of Bath Research and Innovation Services’ Impact Fund for her REF 2020 Case Study 'The Art of Organising Hope'. The event is sponsored by the Standing Seminar in Critical Theory South West Doctoral Training Partnership (SWDTP). 

We are delighted to welcome Thomas Coombes, Head of Brand & Communications at Amnesty International who will be joined by Dr Ben Parry (Bath School of Art & Design, Bath Spa), Dr Ana Cecilia Dinerstein (Social & Policy Sciences, Bath) and María José Ventura Alfaro (MPhil/PhD candidate, SPS, Bath). Chair: Adrian Burgess and Josie Hooker.

Too often participants in social movements and human rights organisations feel more angry, fearful and pessimistic than hopeful. The panellists will explore why and how the concept and the philosophy of hope offers a better framework to create new narratives for those mobilising against violence and injustice for a better world.

Speaker profiles

Thomas Coombes is Head of Brand and Deputy Director of Communications at Amnesty International, UK. He is working on a new 'hope based communications' proposal. He is author of a practical guide for NGOs to change their communications strategies towards hopeful messages.

Ana Cecilia Dinerstein is a feminist, open Marxist and decolonial critical theorist with a research interest in the global politics of hope at the University of Bath. She is author of The Politics of Autonomy in Latin America: The Art of Organising Hope (2015). She writes about social resistance, prefiguration, new forms of utopia and the contemporary uses of Ernst Bloch’s principle of hope

Dr Ben Parry is a visual artist based in London and course leader for the MA Curatorial Practice in the Bath School of Art & Design, at Bath Spa University. His research explores the role of interventionism and activism in challenging the urbanisation of neoliberalism with a focus on reclaiming urban space. He is co-founder of arts organisation Jump Ship Rat and editor of the book Cultural Hijack: Rethinking intervention (2012) 

María José Ventura Alfaro

PhD candidate María José Ventura Alfaro is an ESRC funded post graduate student in the field of Development Studies, Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath. Her research offers a feminist analysis of the contemporary violence against women or Feminicide and social movements’ action in contemporary Mexico. 

Chairing the event

Adrian Burgess is a PhD candidate, Social and Policy Sciences and Global Political Economy, University of Bath. By drawing on the conceptual framework of Pierre Bourdieu, he explores working class millennials aspirations for adult life in advanced neoliberalism to theorise the process of coming of age under austerity.

Josie Hooker is an ESRC-funded PhD candidate, Global Political Economy Pathway, University of Bath. She is an activist and her academic work is rooted in the political practice and collective strategic reflections of the grassroots struggles; most recently, anti-austerity movements and the ongoing radical municipalist turn in Spain.