History of Experience: Methodologies and Practices

March 2-4, 2020, Tampere, Finland

About the conference

The conference aims to deepen and diversify the methodology of the history of experiences, and to connect it to historian’s practices. What do we do, as historians, to study and conceptualize experience? How do we choose methodologies and why, and how they anticipate potential explanations?

History of experience means individual, social, and collective experiences as historically conditioned phenomena. ‘Experience’ refers here to a theoretically and methodologically conceptualized study of human experiences that has potential to bridge structures, ideologies, and individual agency, which has been a difficult gap to close. But potential also includes challenges: How do subjective experiences influence knowledge regimes, social order and divisions, institutions, or other structures, and how do structures shape experiences? How do historians deal with connecting individual and society?

The conference is organized by the Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence in the History of Experiences (HEX), hosted by Tampere University (https://research.uta.fi/hex/). HEX is seeking new ways to study experiences and their role in explaining history. HEX studies experiences as lived realities and focuses on three wide-ranging cultural and societal phenomena: lived religion, lived nation, and lived welfare state.

Organisers