Creative Histories of Witchcraft 1790 – 1940: the AHRC-funded collaboration between a historian, a poet and a playwright.
How might creative writers work with historians? What does it mean for history to be ‘creative’? Why might historians take a ‘creative turn’?
The Arts and Humanities Research Council funded leadership project ‘Creative Histories of Witchcraft, France 1790-1940’ looked for answers to these questions through a combination of research into witchcraft in the long nineteenth century, and a collaboration between creative writers and a historian. This panel will focus on an analysis of this ground-breaking practice-based research project, which took place in 2019.
The project was the first attempt to document criminal cases involving witchcraft in France from 1790-1940, drawing from digitized versions of over two hundred and fifty different regional and national newspapers, as well as research in more than thirty different regional and national archives. But the project extended beyond this topic, to a much wider consideration of creative history and interdisciplinary collaboration.
In this panel, the poet, playwright and historian who worked on this project will discuss their findings (both academic and creative), and what they learnt from working collaboratively together. The panel will include readings of the prose, poetry and theatrical scenes created as part of the project.
Anna Kisby-Compton, Research Associate in Creative Writing (Poetry), University of Bristol
Poppy Corbett, Research Associate in Creative Writing (Drama), University of Bristol
Will Pooley, Lecturer in 19th/20th Century Western European History, University of Bristol