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Conference Report: Beyond the Clock

Constellations, Issue 4

Kevin Andrew Riordan

Jul 25, 2019 | News

In March 2019, the Centre for the Liberal Arts and Social Sciences sponsored an interdisciplinary symposium on temporality studies in the School of Humanities, called “Beyond the Clock.” Organized by Justin Clark (History) and Kevin Riordan (English), this event brought together scholars from around the world to discuss what might be called the third generation of temporality studies. In the twenty-first century, historians, anthropologists, sociologists, philosophers, and literary scholars have pioneered more pluralistic approaches to time, and this symposium brought together some of the most original research from this critical frontier.


The event began with a talk by Stephen Kern (The Ohio State University) derived from his latest book, the highly anticipated sequel to his The Culture of Time and Space: 1880–1918. On the second day, the interdisciplinary panels were bookended by Alexis McCrossen (Southern Methodist University) on the history of the countdown in America and Jimena Canales (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) on “The Trouble with Einstein’s Time.” Linking these conversations to contemporary Singapore, artists Alfian Sa’at (W!ld Rice) and Yanyun Chen (Yale-NUS College) spoke about their own senses of process and local historiographies.

The full program and list of speakers can be found here.