About Supernatural Cities

Supernatural Cities is an interdisciplinary network of humanities and social science scholars of urban environments and the supernatural, based at the University of Portsmouth.

We aim to encourage the conversation between historians, cultural geographers, folklorists, social psychologists, anthropologists, sociologists, and literary scholars as they explore the representation of urban heterotopias, otherness, haunting, estranging, the uncanny, enchantment, affective geographies, communal memory and the urban fantastical.

We will share calls for papers, work on collaborative funding bids and promote relevant research. Alongside this conversation, we also plan to present lectures, seminars, workshops and publications.

Detail from an advertisement inserted in ‘The Supernatural?’ (1892) by Lionel A. Weatherly and John Nevil Maskelyne. (Public Domain)

Narrated geographies and spectral histories tend to survive as collective, communal constructions. With that in mind, this project also seeks to reach beyond academia to engage with both creative practitioners and a range of local community groups, with the aim of prompting imaginative interactions with and altering understandings of our urban spaces and places.

This site will serve as a hub for all of the activities related to the Supernatural Cities project. You can find details of forthcoming public events, including Portsmouth DarkFest, and academic conferences and workshops – both those organised by Supernatural Cities, and external events relating to the themes of the project. Over time, it will also serve as a space for project members to publish posts on aspects of their research.

You can start getting more involved by following us on Twitter and Facebook. There is also a Facebook discussion group for those interested in aspects of the urban supernatural, and a JISCMail discussion group for researchers with similar interests.

If you have an event you would like to promote, or any other news that could be relevant for us to share, just get in touch!