Envisioning Limits: Outer Space and the End of Utopia

I am attending the conference, “Envisioning Limits: Outer Space and the End of Utopia,” sponsored by the Emmy Noether Research Group, Friedrich-Meinecke-Institut, at the Freie Universität Berlin. It is a very engaging program and between April 19 and 21, 2012, we will consider a wide range of ideas about this subject of astroculture. The program is below.

THURSDAY, 19 April 2012

09.00 Introduction

Alexander C.T. Geppert, William R. Macauley and Daniel Brandau: The 1970s, Western Europe and the Delineation of Space

09.30 Feature Presentation I

Martin Collins: Ambiguities of the 1970s. Spaceflight and the Problem of Historically Interpreting the In-Between Decade

11.00 Panel I: Transitions

Chair: Paul Nolte

Andrew Jenks: Transnational History and Human Space Flight

Doug Millard: Were the 1970s a Period of Transition for the History of Britain’s Exploration of Space?

14.00 Panel II: Pictures

Chair: Thomas P. Weber

Robert Poole: ‘2001: A Space Odyssey.’ Space Travel and the Ends of Progress

Ralf Bülow: The X Files. Reading a West German Sci-Tech Magazine from 1969 to 1973

16.00 Panel III: Laws

Chair: Peter Becker

Luca Follis: Beyond Law’s Frontier. The Normative Imaginary of Outer Space

Virgiliu Pop: The Moon Agreement and the Beginning of Utopia

19.00 Feature Presentation II

Agnes Meyer-Brandis: Space Traveling. A Performance-Lecture Examining Real Utopian Aspects of Interplanetary Exchange of Idea and Matter

FRIDAY, 20 April 2012

09.00 Feature Presentation III

Chair: William R. Macauley

John Krige: Blowback, Lift Off. The Rise of Ariane and the Decline of US Monopoly of Access to Space in the 1970s

10.15 Panel IV: Politics

Chair: Etienne Benson

Matthew H. Hersch: ‘On the Edge of Forever.’ 1972 and the New American Space Consensus

Neil M. Maher: Ground Control. Space Technology, Environmentalism, and Détente

Across the Developing World

13.00 Panel V: Texts

Chair: Matthias Schwartz

Florian Kläger: Reading into the Stars. Cosmology and Self-Reflexivity in the British Novel of the 1970s

Aleksandra Idzior: Images of Extraterrestrial Life and Designs for ‘Out-of-Space’ in Poland during the 1960s and 1970s

15.00 Panel VI: Aesthetics

Chair: Claudia Schmölders

Christina Vatsella: Artworks in Orbit. The Satellite Art Projects

Thore Bjørnvig: Unlimited Play in a World of Limits. The Lego Classic Space Theme, 1978-80

17.00 Panel VII: Prospects

Chair: Debbora Battaglia

Philippe Ailleris: Red Soil, Phonograph Records and United Nations Resolution 33/426. Our 1970s Extraterrestrial Heritage

Janet Vertesi and Lisa Messeri: The Greatest Mission Never Flown. Mars Sample Return, Terrestrial Planet Finder, and the Limits of Utopia

SATURDAY, 21 April 2012

09.00 Panel VIII: Habitats

Chair: Thomas Brandstetter

W. Patrick McCray: Gerard O’Neill’s Visioneering of the ‘High Frontier’

Gonzalo Munévar: Space Colonies and their Critics

11.00 Panel IX: Transcendence

Chair: Helmuth Trischler

Peter J. Westwick: From the Club of Rome to Star Wars. The Era of Limits, Space Colonization, and the Origins of the Strategic Defense Initiative

Roger D. Launius: Human Spaceflight as Religion in the Aftermath of the Space Race

14.00 Conclusion

Chair: Alexander C.T. Geppert

David A. Kirby: General Comment

16.00 End

This entry was posted in Apollo, Applications Satellites, Cold War Competition, Earth Science, History, International Space Station, Lunar Exploration, Politics, Science, Space, Space Shuttle and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Envisioning Limits: Outer Space and the End of Utopia

  1. Sally Bailey says:

    Loved reading the names of all the talks. So interesting. Looking for little clues as to what’s real and what’s metaphorical/imaginary.

    Here’s something I ran across while browsing the internet today that seems to be pushing new boundaries. Don’t know if this falls withing your general areas of interest, but it sounds big. Wonder how far they’ll go.



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