Troubling Legacies / Fractured Futures

Drafts – documenting the event (these are a work in progress).

Introduction – On science fiction games, bodies, theory and affect: CarrDocumentationTroublingLegacies

A collaborative response to Subhadra’s presentation of the Galton Collection: DCsEditTheGaltonCollection

Esther Fox: Disability past/futures – from archiving to screening and screening out SlidesEditEstherFoxHowToGetVaporised


Troubling Legacies/Fractured Futures
Research seminar and workshop
London March 14th 2019
12:00 to 4 pm.
Room G 12, UCL, 22 Gordon St building (The Bartlett)
Map  (near Euston tube)
RSVP to Diane Carr (

‘Troubling Legacies/Fractured Futures’ is a half day research seminar and workshop on non-normative bodies in games, histories and institutions.

Programmed and convened by Diane Carr (UCL) and Esther Fox (Accentuate) for the D4D project (AHRC, 2016-2020).

The normate has been defined as: “the constructed identity of those who, by way of the bodily configurations and cultural capital they assume, can step into a position of authority and wield the power it grants them” (Rosemary Garland Thomson, Extraordinary Bodies, p. 8, 1997, Columbia UP).  For an introduction to research on games and normate bodies, try this presentation or the material listed here.


12:10 – 12:30 arrivals, signing in and sandwiches

12:30 – 1:00
How to Get Stuffed
From Galton to Gamification via Dead Space. Normate reassurance and popular culture. An introduction to today’s seminar and workshop.
Speaker: Diane Carr (UCL)
Chair: Phaedra Shanbaum (UCL)

1:00 – 1:30
How to get vaporised
Artist and D4D partner Esther Fox will discuss her approach to arts-based community research, including the use of VR, games and science fiction to explore critical disability perspectives on genetic screening.
Speaker: Esther Fox
Chair: Jennifer Rode (UCL)

1:30  – 2:15
Special Guest!
Subhadra Das – Curator of the Galton Collection at UCL will be showing us items from the Collection and sharing their stories.

2:15 break.

2:30 – 4:00 pm
Workshop/discussion: Galton’s devices and game design: Non-normate pay-back, or just a really bad idea?
The working groups will be led by Bruno de Paula (UCL) and Paulo Ruffino (U of Lincoln). For more on Bruno and Paulo’s work follow the links below.

More information 

Free to attend. Numbers will be limited (12-15). Contributions towards travel may be possible. Contact Diane in advance if you’ve got accessibility issues you’d like taken into account. This event is part of the AHRC funded D4D project (2016-20) and it is co-convened by Diane Carr and Esther Fox.

For more about D4D – go here.

For more on The Galton Collection

Subhadra Das on teaching with the collection, Galton’s legacy, and “a continuing feeling of being ruled out of the game” –

For more on Subhadra Das’ work

And there’s a podcast, here.

Read more about Esther Fox’s work on disability, eugenics and screening:

Esther is also head of Accentuate.

For more on Bruno de Paula’s work on identity and games making, go to this DiGRA 2018 paper.

Paolo Ruffino’s recent publications include Future Gaming – Creative Interventions in Video Game Culture (Goldsmiths, 2018) and there’s more information at

For more on Diane’s work:
Digra 2016 paper (normate vulnerability and ability in games).
This conference paper (2014)  Link
This presentation from 2018   Link
Or try the Publications page.

Inquiry into history of Eugenics at UCL, link.

For more on Subhadra’s work, visit here: Link

Or watch Subhadra’s talk about Francis Galton and UCL

Screenshot from Deus Ex: Mankind Divided.


Image: Crate full of garbage, including a prosthetic arm. Screenshot from a science fiction themed computer game, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (2016, Eidos Montreal/Square Enix)

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