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Lieber ein schnelles Leben und der Tod – ‘I’d rather have a fast life and then death’

Chair: Dr Mark Condos, Lecturer, War Studies Department 

Speaker: Dr Clare Bielby, Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York 

About the event

From the persistent threat of sudden death, through the rapid pace of a violent action, to the monotonous, repetitive and dragging quality of everyday life ‘underground’, involvement in terrorism can lead to a very particular experience of time.

This event will explore constructions of ‘terrorist time’ in memoirs written by former members of West German terrorist organisations Red Army Faction and Movement 2nd June - both founded during the 1970s - with particular reference to how they’re shaped by gender and class.

Dr Clare Bielby will discuss the structures of terrorism, from the systems of everyday life to its function to resist hetero/normative gendered and classed scripts, and argue that if we want to better understand terrorism and the attractions of ‘doing’ terrorism, we need to think about experiences of time.

Speaker bio

Dr Clare Bielby is Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York. Dr Bielby’s work draws upon methods from cultural and literary studies, and examines a variety of issues, including terrorism and gender; the relationship between violence, representation, gender, subjectivity, and emotion; as well as the field of perpetrator studies. Dr Bielby is author of Violent Women in Print: Representations in West German Print Media of the 1960s and 1970s (2012), and most recently is co-editor of Perpetrating Selves: Doing Violence, Performing Identity (2018). Dr Bielby is also a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Perpetrator Studies.

2022 marks the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Department of War Studies by Sir Michael Howard, and provides an important opportunity to both reflect and build upon his remarkable achievements and legacy. Sir Michael Howard’s greatest contribution to the history of war was his insistence on moving beyond the battlefield in order to examine the wider political and social contexts in which wars were fought. He also wrote about the legal, moral, and philosophical implications of war, and throughout his distinguished career sought to develop new approaches to understanding the impact of war on society.

At this event

Mark Condos

Senior Lecturer in Imperial and Global History