The 20th- and 21st-Century Irish Literatures: Between Realism and Experimentation
HJEAS (Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies) seeks essay submissions for a thematic section of a 2019 issue on “The 20th and 21st Century Irish Literatures between Realism and Experimentation.” HJEAS is a peer-reviewed journal of the Institute of English and American Studies, University of Debrecen, Hungary, publishing critical articles and book reviews in the fields of American, British, Canadian, and Irish literature, history, and culture, and is available from JSTOR and ProQuest. (www.hjeas.unideb.hu)
The tension between realism and experimentation has marked the development of modern Irish literature, being intrinsic to the work of a number of major Irish writers. Often regarded as a father-figure of all experimental writing, James Joyce was attacked by as different commentators as Lukács and Pound for the scope and radicalness of experiment, particularly in Finnegans Wake. Joyce himself considered his work to be firmly set in the realist tradition. At a time when he was yet to publish his first collection of lyrics, W. B. Yeats was encouraged by his father to write realist prose, which may eventually have contributed to his abhorrence of realism in favour of ever more daring experimentation in verse writing. Nonetheless, Yeats’s poetry is packed full of amazingly realist portrayals of the world about him. J. M. Synge may have worked in a realist mode but his implementation of vernacular Aran speech paved the way for the linguistic experimentation of the following generations of Irish (also English-language) playwrights.
Modern Irish literature may seem to be a field of vacillators (whether conscious or not remains to be investigated) who employ traditional genres and modes of writing, while at the same time, almost instinctively, seeking to supersede conventions. Sometimes this happens tacitly, by pushing the boundaries of expressiveness a little further, like with Synge. Occasionally the revolt engulfs conventions in flames in which new means of expression are forged, as is the case in Joyce.
Papers may include but are in no way limited to:
- Realist and experimental modes in high modernism and onwards
- Experimental literature today and a century ago: continuity and change
- Revisions of the realist mode in contemporary Irish literatures
- Ethics and aesthetics of realist and/or experimental literature
- The great masters’ (stifling/enabling) influences
- Contemporary realisms (including magical realism)
- Voices from the margin (social, cultural, racial, etc.) and the conventions and aesthetics they have embraced or created
- Cosmopolitanism vs. parochialism – openness and resistance to foreign trends
- Irish literature and globalization (e.g., realism and experimentation in literary responses to global traumas, literature and the new media, literature and migration, etc.)
- The aesthetics of nostalgia and futurity
Completed manuscripts of 5,000-10,000 words must follow the MLA parenthetical citation with Works Cited. Please follow the HJEAS Style Sheet available here Proposals of 500 words with a 100-150 bio are due by February 15, 2018. Final papers are due by July 15, 2018. Please send the submissions and all inquiries to the guest editors, Wit Pietrzak and Katarzyna Ojrzyńska
Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies
Jane Austen and Cultural Outsiders
Friday, November 10, 2017
Keynote Speaker: Professor Susan Fraiman,
The University of Virginia
Professor Fraiman is the author of Unbecoming Women: British Women Writers and the
Novel of Development, Cool Men and the Second Sex, and Extreme Domesticity: A View
from the Margins. She is also the editor of Northanger Abbey: Norton Critical Edition.
Proposed papers should explore the works of Jane Austen in relation to the category of “outsiders.” Possible topics include (but are not limited to) the following:
- Austen’s treatment of characters who are marginal in social terms (by virtue of race, class, national origin, marital status, occupation, birth order, etc.).
- Likewise, the treatment of characters who are marginal in narrative terms.
- Austen’s treatment of issues involving cultural “others” (slavery, colonialism, enclosure of lands, urban riots, etc.)
adaptations of her work (movies, stage plays, etc.) produced in non-Western cultural contexts.
- Austen’s influence on writers who are “outsiders” to the British
- Sequels, spinoffs, and other reworkings of Austen’s novels that
feature cultural “others” (servants, zombies, etc.).
British Jewish Contemporary Cultures: An International Conference
26-27 March 2018, Bangor University, Wales.
We invite proposals for the first international British Academy funded conference on British Jewish Contemporary Cultures. Any topic which explores the study of contemporary British Jewish culture, widely defined, is welcomed. We are particularly interested in locating British Jewish contemporary cultures in global and comparative settings, as well as in terms of imperial, postcolonial and transnational narratives. The aim of the conference is to tease out the tension between a transcultural British Jewish Studies and the specificity of the Jewish experience in Britain with increasing theoretical and methodological complexity.
We welcome proposals for panel discussions as well as individual papers of 20 minutes. Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words and a brief biography to Jennifer Griffiths by 1st December 2017.
Suggested topics include but are by no means limited to:
- Writing British Jewishness
- Images of British Jewishness in film and television
- Gender, sexuality and Jewishness in contemporary culture
- Visual images (art, cartoons, graphic novels)
- British Jews and the media
- Shifting Identities: Transcultural contexts
- British Jewishness and the Holocaust
- Politics and Jewishness in contemporary Britain
- Locating British Jewishness: space and place
- British Jews and Israel/Palestine
- Black and British Jewish Intersections
- Brexit and Contemporary British Jewish culture
Conference organisers: Professor Nathan Abrams (Bangor) and Dr. Ruth Gilbert (Winchester). The conference has been generously supported by the British Academy.
British Literature and Sociology, 1838-1910
Though Émile Durkheim, Max Weber, and Georg Simmel are generally regarded as the “founders” of sociology as a discipline, sociological theory was actually rooted in nineteenth-century culture as intellectuals and scientists attempted to make sense of the political, economic, and social dislocations brought about by the Industrial and French Revolutions. Auguste Comte (who coined the term “la sociologie” in 1838), John Stuart Mill, Harriet Martineau, George Henry Lewes, Karl Marx, Henry Mayhew, Herbert Spencer, and Charles Booth were among the primary exponents of “the scientific study of society” during the Victorian era; significantly, their work often responded to or was informed by myriad literary authors and forms.
This volume represents the first collection of essays to illuminate the historically and intellectually complex relationship between literary studies and sociology in nineteenth and early twentieth-century Britain. As Samuel Kerkham Ratcliffe noted in a December 1909 paper read before London’s Sociological Society, “Sociology and the English Novel,” the “difficulty is not to discover sociology in fiction, but to find anything therein that is without sociological value and meaning.” This point has been more recently amplified by Wolf Lepenies, in Between Literature and Science: The Rise of Sociology, and Krishna Kumar, in “Sociology and the Englishness of English Social Theory,” who both have sought to account for Britain’s relatively slow professionalization of sociology before 1950 by citing the fact that “for the English their poets, novelists, and literary critics seemed to be doing a more than adequate job of analysis and criticism of the novel problems of nineteenth-century industrial society” (Kumar 55). With these observations in mind, we invite essays that will help to address some key questions. How, precisely, did Victorian and Edwardian literary texts did help to develop and formalize the discipline of sociology? How did emergent sociological discourses and practices shape the literature of the nineteenth- and early-twentieth century? To what degree were literature and sociology offering competing systems for analyzing the society they purported to represent?
We welcome papers that consider the sociological provenance of specific Victorian and Edwardian cultural objects and practices or papers that explore how various social theories and theorists were inherently tethered to or inspired by the literary. We especially encourage submissions that explore problems in and of the social through the “contact zones” of literary studies and sociology. Essays might examine one or more specific examples of “the scientific study of society” and consider the degree to which these proto-sociological texts are themselves amenable to rhetorical, ideological, formal, historical or other permutations of “literary” analysis. Contributors might discuss how specific literary works represent persons, institutions, or methods of thought associated with sociological theory and practice, and/or whether such literary works contributed to an emergent sociological discourse (or discourses). We also invite papers that explore how nineteenth- and early-twentieth century literary texts contributed to the expansion of sociology as a discipline and/or anticipated the later theoretical interventions of Erving Goffman, Pierre Bourdieu, Anthony Giddens, etc. In addition, sociological accounts of the role of literature in the formation of national identities, classes, or class fractions in Victorian or Edwardian England would be welcome. This list is meant to be suggestive rather than exhaustive.
We are currently soliciting proposals (300-500 words, plus one-page CV) for essays of roughly 6000-8000 words. Proposals should be sent by or before December 15, 2017.
Maria K. Bachman, Professor and Chair
Department of English
Middle Tennessee State University
Albert D. Pionke, Professor
Department of English
University of Alabama
CONVERSIONS IN EARLY MODERN BRITISH LITERATURE AND CULTURE
Florence, 20 April 2018
Abstract submission deadline: 29 October 2017
The 2018 IASEMS Graduate Conference at The British Institute of Florence is a one-day interdisciplinary and bilingual English-Italian forum open to PhD students and researchers who have obtained their doctorates within the past 5 years. This year’s conference will focus on the theme of conversion, a fascinating phenomenon, a promise of newness that blends elements of individual experience with larger problems of historical change.
The ideological and spiritual life of early modern Britain finds a special interpretative key in the notion of conversion, whether perceived as an individual response to a religious and political challenge, a community reaction to political upheaval, or a social change brought about by the innovations of modernity.
The goal of this Conference is to develop an understanding of conversion that will address epistemological, psychological, political, spiritual and technological kinds of transformation, perceived both as subjective and collective change. Therefore conversion is to be understood in its broadest possible sense, and nor merely as a religious phenomenon.
Topics of interest include, but are not limited to the following:
forms of conversion, sacred and secular, i.e., awakening to a new faith, an intensification of existing beliefs, an embracing of a (radical) political movement, etc.
- conversional thinking and practice
- early modern textual ‘conversions’, i.e., from manuscript to print, from one format to another, from one genre to another
- relationships among transformation, freedom and power
- forms of religious dissent in early modern British culture
- religious change and gender
- how early modern English theatre and other theatrical practices represent, adopt, transform, relocate forms of conversion
- the phenomenon of forced conversion
- authenticity and pretense in conversion
- religious conversion as catalyst of other transformations (e.g., translation, alchemy, enthusiasm, etc.)
- technologies of transformation
Candidates are invited to send a description of their proposed contribution according to the following guidelines:
- the candidate should provide name, institution, contact info, title and a short abstract of the proposed contribution (300 words for a 20-minute paper), explaining the content and intended structure of the paper, and including a short bibliography;
- abstracts are to be submitted by Sunday 29 October 2017 by email
- all proposals will be blind-vetted. The list of selected papers will be available by the end of November 2017;
- each finished contribution should not exceed 20 minutes and is to be presented in English (an exception will be made for Italian candidates of departments other than English, who can give their papers in Italian);
- Candidates whose first language is not English will need to have their proposals and final papers checked by a mother-tongue speaker
- participants will be asked to present a final draft of the paper ten days before the Conference.
Elizabeth I: The Armada and Beyond, 1588 to 2018
Queen’s House Conference 2018, Greenwich
19–21 April 2018
In September 2016, Royal Museums Greenwich acquired the Armada Portrait of Elizabeth I. This
remarkable work of art has captured widespread attention from its creation until the present day,
providing a defining image of what has come to be seen as a critical moment in history: the failed
invasion of England by the Spanish Armada in the summer of 1588. This conference will address this
moment in time and its consequences both for Elizabeth and her subjects in the immediate aftermath of
the Armada and for subsequent generations, as the idea of the Virgin Queen and her great triumph has
been shaped and remade throughout history until the present day.
While the image was inspired by a specific event, its complex symbolism embraces issues of monarchy,
dynasty, nation and empire in the early modern period. It was designed to be a spectacle of female
power and majesty, carefully calibrated to inspire awe and wonder, an impression which has lasted to
the present day. Scholars have described the portrait as a definitive representation of the English
Renaissance, encapsulating the creativity, ideals and ambitions of the entire Elizabethan era. Equally the
portrait has inspired and informed countless representations of Elizabeth I in the visual and performing
arts, and across film, theatre and television. It has thus been instrumental in making her one of the most
recognizable historical figures for audiences today.
Elizabeth’s apparently impressive military record against the forces of tyranny and popery, affirmed
through such imagery as the Armada Portrait, became the standard by which her successors were
judged. As the seventeenth century progressed, the myth of ‘Good Queen Bess’, ‘Gloriana’ and the
Elizabethan ‘Golden Age’ took hold. At the same time, the idea of 1588 as the moment when Britain
began its rise as a major naval and imperial power established itself. The 1588 Armada became
synonymous with the menace of invasion and despotism, and victory came to signal a bright future of
English/British liberty and ascendancy. Today, Elizabeth continues to be claimed as a role model for
politicians and others seeking to associate themselves with the values that she is seen to represent.
This conference will mark the conservation and re-display of the Armada Portrait at the Queen’s House,
the last remaining building of Greenwich Palace, the birthplace of Elizabeth I and a major royal site for
the Tudor and Stuart dynasties. The Queen’s House and the collections of Royal Museums Greenwich
offer the potential to unpack a range of meanings and contexts for the image, including the domestic
and international worlds of the Renaissance period and the resonance of the Spanish Armada within
history to the present day. It is hoped that this conference will pick up on these themes, advancing our
understanding of the Armada Portrait specifically and Elizabeth I more generally, interrogating popular
notions associated with her life and reputation, offering fresh and alternative perspectives.
Some of the themes that might be considered include (but are not limited to):
• Female power and authority
• Female monarchs and consorts as war leaders
• Court culture and patronage post-1588
• Relations with Protestant Europe and reputation as a Protestant heroine
• Her role during and after the Spanish Armada
• Elizabeth in the public eye
• Commemorations of 1588 in Elizabethan culture and beyond
• Relations with the Islamic World, 1588–1603
• Trade and Empire, East and West
• Elizabeth and her biographers
• Representations in historical genre paintings
• Characterizations in film, fiction, opera and theatre
• The reputation of Elizabeth, home and abroad, from 1588 to the present day
We invite submission of abstracts (300 to 400 words) for twenty-minute papers. The deadline for submissions is 1 December 2017. Please direct queries, if any, to Janet Dickinson or Christine Riding and submit proposals and a brief biography here.
Convenors: Robert Blyth, Christine Riding (Royal Museums Greenwich) and Janet Dickinson (University
of Oxford). The conference is hosted by the Royal Museums Greenwich in association with the Society
for Court Studie
Literature, Education and the Sciences of the Mind in Britain and America, 1850-1950
University of Kent, Canterbury, UK
17-18 July, 2018
Keynote Speakers:Professor Helen Small, Pembroke College, University of Oxford
Professor Priscilla Wald, Duke University
This conference aims to stimulate a wide-ranging discussion about the interactions between British and American literature, education, and the sciences of the mind between 1850-1950. We welcome paper and panel proposals on any aspect of British or American literature, education and/or the sciences of the mind broadly construed.This conference is part of Dr Sara Lyons’ (PI), Dr Michael Collins’ (Co-I) and Dr Fran Bigman’s (Research Associate) AHRC-funded project, Literary Culture, Meritocracy, and the Assessment of Intelligence in Britain and America, 1880-1920. The project is an investigation of how British and American novelists understood and represented intellectual ability in the period, with a particular focus on how they responded to the rise of intelligence testing and the associated concepts of I.Q. and meritocracy. For additional information, please visit our website. Possible topics include literature and:
- Teaching and Being Taught; pedagogical theory and practice
- Representations of Places of Learning
- Examinations, grades, scholarships, qualifications
- Inequality, Discrimination, and Exclusion in Education
- Academic Success and Failure
- Intellectuals, Experts, Professionalism
- Autodidacticism, Informal Education
- Varieties of education: aesthetic, classical, moral, religious, scientific, technical
- Learning Styles and Types of Intelligence
- Intellectual ability and disability
As well as literature and:
- Professionalisation/ Institutionalisation of Psychology
- Psychometrics and personality testing
- Physiology and psychology
- Psychological Schools and Controversie
- Psychology and Philosophy
Please submit an individual proposal of no more than 350 words or an outline for a 3 paper panel proposal by the 1 March, 2018. Papers will be limited to 20 minutes. Please include your name, a short bio, and email address in your proposal.