This special issue stems from the international conference Trauma and Gender in Twentieth-Century European Literature, organized in March 2016 at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow under the aegis of the Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare, and with the kind support of the Wellcome Trust.1 The studies included here explore how the axis between trauma and gender intersects in a range of narratives by men and women writers and filmmakers in twentieth-and twenty-first-century Europe. The issue discusses the ill-effects of war as experienced by soldiers but also its long-lasting impact on civilians as manifested in different forms of trauma. In other words, it looks, from the perspective of gender, into the expression of trauma caused either by the historical context (World War I, World War II, Francoism, etc.) or by personal events. In so doing, it is significant that some recurrent themes emerge, such as silence, rape, illness, death, and, indeed, the trauma of gender itself.
International Conference - Call for Papers
11th & 12th March 2016 - University of Strathclyde, Glasgow
Trauma, just like other psychosomatic concepts in medical history such as shock and stress, has been subjected to a variety of interpretations across disciplines since it emerged in the nineteenth-century as a notion to capture certain psychological experiences and conditions in modern societies and cultures. Yet, it remains a highly contested term that has seen numerous redefinitions as its place in popular and medical discourse is continuingly under scrutiny.