Transforming the Future Seminar on "Images of the future in French 'anticipatory literature'"

When :

from Wednesday 18 September, 2019
to Thursday 19 September, 2019

Type of event :

Category 7-Seminar and Workshop

Where :

Room VI, 7, place Fontenoy, 75007, Paris, France

Contact :

Riel Miller,; Eleonora Di Pilato,

UNESCO, as a pioneering force in the global development of Future Literacy since 2012, is hosting a seminar with Pierre-Antoine Marti, a PhD candidate in History at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS), who is now working on a study of many science fiction novels and short stories from the 1950s to the 2000s in France. The event will take place at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris on 18 September 2019.

The proposed lecture, focused on the theme of anticipation from an historical perspective, addresses several themes such as the perception of the future through the centuries, the major stages in the history of anticipation and the representations of a global governance.

Pierre-Antoine Marti is a PhD candidate in History at EHESS, at the "Centre de Recherches Historiques". He is working on a thesis entitled "Il sera une fois, représentations de l'avenir dans la littérature d'anticipation" ("Once upon a time, representations of the future in the anticipation literature" - dir. : Dinah Ribard). Launched around three years ago, this study covers many novels and science fiction short stories published in France from the 1950s to the 2000s, but from all walks of life: the United States, Great Britain, the USSR, etc. These works are analysed through a historian's lens, to trace the history of the genre, but above all to think about History itself through the prism of the future. Anticipation makes it possible to stimulate thinking about the future, time and the "meaning of history" in contemporary societies.

As part of this research, Pierre-Antoine Marti has worked with numerous institutions and companies (Futuribles, Ubisoft, CNES...). His first articles in university journals will be published at the beginning of this academic year.

The proposed lecture, focused on the theme of anticipation, addresses several themes:
- History of the future: how was the future envisaged from antiquity to the present day?
- The present time: what are the major conceptions of time in general, and of the future in particular, nowadays?
- Approaches to the future: general and methodological reflections on how to approach the future.
- On imaginaries in science fiction: the major stages in the history of anticipation, what science fiction does with reality, what it does to reality.
- Possible connections with UNESCO's interests on these issues: Futures Literacy, and perceptions of global governance, commonly found in Science Fiction.

Please register by sending an email to Eleonora Di Pilato,