XVIth Annual Conference
The Sophia Centre
Rivers, Mountains, Sky and Sea - The Harmony of Spirit and Place
University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Lampeter campus
Saturday 7 July and Sunday 8 July 2018
In Dust of Snow American poet Robert Frost (1874-1963) wrote of his uplifted spirit in an unexpected encounter with landscape and animal:
"The way a crow,
Shook down on me,
The dust of snow.
From a hemlock tree,
Has given my heart,
A change of mood,
And saved some part,
Of a day I had rued".
As Frost demonstrates, certain experiences produce a direct phenomenological sense of connection with other-than-human entities (Abrams 2010). These potent encounters may elicit significant feelings of reverence and awe, and in so doing elucidate the inherent entangled relationships between flesh and place. This is what Lévy-Bruhl (1975) described as participation with the place, what Heidegger called 'being in the world' (1971) and what Ingold terms 'dwelling with' the landscape (2000).
This academic conference attends to the intersections and relationships between land, sea, sky and bodies with a view to exploring historical or contemporary expressions of participation or becoming-with place. It adopts water, mountains, and sky as a framework, and, chiming with the broad scope of research achieved by the Sophia Centre, invites interdisciplinary proposals that recognise these kinds of vital entanglements of people and places, land, water and sky.