Friday, May 31, 2013

Birkbeck Forum: A Network of Trollopes, an Italy of Women: Historical Biography, Nationhood, and Events (6/10/2013)

The next and final Birkbeck Forum for Nineteenth-Century Studies event of the term will feature Alison Booth (Virginia) presenting on "A Network of Trollopes, an Italy of Women: Historical Biography, Nationhood, and Events" from 6:00-8:00pm on Monday 10 June 2013.

Frances Trollope, Thomas Adolphus Trollope, and his wives, Theodosia Garrow Trollope and Frances Eleanor Trollope, all writers, create a cluster of events – marriage, correspondence, publication, travel, death – in their international circles in Italy. This talk traces their network through A Decade of Italian Women and other collective biographies that emerged from the conjunction of interest in 'Italian' women and in resurgent Italy. Professor Booth will also talk about her database, Collective Biographies of Women and its prototype 'work station', and methodology.

Link to Collective Biograpies of Women:
Link to its prototype work station:

Unless otherwise noted, all sessions take place in the Keynes Library (Room 114, School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square, London, UK, WC1H 0PD). All sessions are free and welcome to the public.

For those interested, please feel free to join Alison Booth for dinner at Carluccio's after the talk.

CFP: NeMLA "Transatlantic Encounters: Redefining Temporality in the Nineteenth Century" (9/30/2013; 4/3-6/2014)

45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 3-6, 2014
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Host: Susquehanna University

The nineteenth century was an era that changed the way people experienced time on both sides of the Atlantic. New modes of transportation such as the railroad and the steam engine shortened the time spent traveling across long distances, while new forms of communication such as the telephone and the transatlantic cable promoted faster and more reliable transatlantic exchange. As time speeds up, distances shrink—enabling new opportunities and disabling old ones for both men and women. The fast tempo of factory work and groups such as the “Ten Hours Movement” fixed new importance on the relation between a man’s work and his time, while debates about “redundant women” were based on the threat posed by a large number of women who, according to Florence Nightingale, had nothing to do with their time. On the other hand, the scientific theories of Charles Darwin, Charles Lyell, Herbert Spencer, and John Fiske complicated the understanding of temporality by emphasizing the experience of “deep” geological time and “natural” evolutionary patterns.

This panel questions how changes in temporal experience influenced the perception of race, gender and class in 19th-cent. British and American contexts, especially with regard to theories of transnationalism and cosmopolitanism, and the genres of realism and naturalism. We are interested in papers that open the geography of transatlantic studies to a discussion of time across literary, political, and scientific contexts.

Please send a 300-word abstract and a bio to Jacob Jewusiak ( and Myrto Drizou (

Deadline:  September 30, 2013
Please include with your abstract:
Name and Affiliation
Email address
Postal address
Telephone number
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Reminder: AVSA "Victorian Transport" (11/30/2013;7/10-12/2013)

Australasian Victorian Studies Association Annual Conference
'Victorian Transport'
Hong Kong 10-12 July 2014

Keynote speakers:
Stephen Davies (Hong Kong Maritime Museum)
Josephine McDonagh (King’s College, London)
Peter McNeil (University of Technology, Sydney)

The Victorian Age is one of mobility and of transportation: goods, people and money were transported within Great Britain, across Europe, and to the far reaches of Empire. Ideas – whether economic, political, educational, religious or philosophical – were imported and exported. And far from being unemotional, the Victorians were also regularly 'transported' by emotions which doctors, scientists and psychologists tried to theorise.

This conference seeks to redefine the parameters of transport through inter-disciplinary approaches to material, metaphorical and metaphysical journeys during the Victorian era. Papers on global crossings are particularly welcome.
Topics might include but are not limited to:
  • Transporting people, transporting goods
  • Modes of Transportation
  • Intellectual transport
  • Trade and trafficking
  • Penal colonies
  • Theorising 'transport'
  • Theories of the emotions
  • Women and transport
  • Transport, its politics and policies
  • Transatlantic and Transpacific transportation
  • Transference and the subconscious
  • Dreams and Telepathy
  • Transporting and translating literature abroad
  • Transport hubs/ urban development
  • Speed
  • Transportive music
  • Landscape and environment
  • Immobility
  • Time Travel
  • Neo-Victorian Transport
A special section of the conference calls for papers on Victorian Transport related to China and the 'China-West' axis. Please signal in your application whether you would like your paper to be considered for inclusion in any of these 'China' or 'China-West' panels.

Five postgraduate/ SWIF travel bursaries will be awarded by the Conference Committee, on the basis of need and merit. Please include a short covering letter and cv in your application for such funding.

Abstracts of up to 300 words, together with your biodata (ca. 100-150 words), should be sent to:

Deadline for Abstracts: 30 November 2013. Notification by end-January 2014.

CFP: NeMLA "Apparitions and Illusions: The Spectral in the Victorian Cultural Imagination" (9/30/2013;4/3-6/2014)

45th Annual Convention (NeMLA)
April 3-6, 2014
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Host: Susquehanna University

This panel invites submissions that explore Victorian fascination with the supernatural and the spirit world. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to, the following: mesmerism, the occult, and the popular press; the black art of spirit photography; clairvoyant authority; gender and psychic intuition; authenticating the invisible; misgivings about faith and science; the creepily inexplicable in a good ghost tale. 

Send 300-word abstracts to Joellen Masters, with ‘Victorian Supernatural’ in the subject line.

Deadline:  September 30, 2013
Please include with your abstract:
Name and Affiliation
Email address
Postal address
Telephone number
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)

CFP: Beyond the Victorian Modernist Divide (9/15/2013; 3/27-28/2014)

International Conference, organized by Anne Besnault-Levita and Anne-Florence Gillard

Université de Rouen - laboratoire ERIAC :

Keynote speakers:
Professor Michael Bentley, University of St. Andrews
Professor Melba Cuddy-Keane, University of Toronto

Ezra Pound’s injunction to “make it new!” or Virginia Woolf’s “on or about 1910” statement have long been used in order no support a version of modernism as a strictly aesthetic revolution — or crisis — implying an essential break with Victorian art, culture and ideology. In the last decade, however, the crucial transition between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries has been variously reassessed. In the wake of the new modernist studies and of the recent revaluations of the Victorian period, a growing body of scholarship now challenges traditional periodisation by examining the existence of overlaps and unexplored continuities between the Victorians, the post-Victorians and the modernists. Once separated by a critical and cultural break, Victorian and modernist scholars have become preoccupied with a similar search for cultural and aesthetic complexities that make it possible to move beyond doxic discourses and fixed dichotomies: the past and the present, outer life and inner life, materiality and spirituality, tradition and innovation, ideology and aesthetics.

This international conference would like those scholars to join forces and contribute to this new phase in the Victorian-modern debate from a broad range of perspectives across the disciplines: literature, criticism, the visual arts, history, science and philosophy. The emergence or re-emergence of ideas such as the “modern”, the “new” or “change” at the turn of the century is an indisputable fact that we want to acknowledge and re-contextualize by examining the different meanings and practices they encompass. From there, we wish to explore the birth and perpetration of two critical meta-narratives and their interdependence: the myth of “high modernism” and the myth of “Victorianism”. If there is no clear repudiation of history and heritage on the modernists’ part, if “rupture” was a useful fiction, if the challenge to traditional aesthetics and ideology was already a Victorian preoccupation, then we definitely need to remap modernism and Victorianism simultaneously.

The papers that we call for are meant to contribute to a trans-disciplinary publication whose synopsis could be the following, although it is far from being fixed.

  • Periods, words, labels: historicizing and contextualizing the idea of the “break”
  • Victorian, Edwardian and modernist literature: unexplored lines of filiation
  • Art history, aesthetic philosophy and the visual arts across the Victorian/Modernist divide
  • Science, philosophy, ideology: landmarks for a new history of ideas
  • New approaches to identity, gender and the self: from mid-Victorians to modernist ideologies and practices.

The proposals (300 to 500 words with a short biographical notice) should be sent to both Anne Besnault-Levita ( and Anne-Florence Gillard-Estrada ( by September 15th 2014. Notification of acceptance: October 15th.

See the selected bibliography as well as the forthcoming information on the conference website:

Registration Open: in:flux 1845-1945: A Century in Motion (7/27/2013)

Registration for 'in:flux 1845-1945: A Century in Motion' is now open via our website

The event is free and open to all who are interested!

To see the original CFP on Of Victorian Interest follow this link:

Special Issue CFP: Victorian Review "Victorians and Risk" (9/1/2013; Fall 2014)

Victorian Review seeks proposals for articles for a special issue on “Victorians and Risk,” to be published in Fall 2014 and guest edited by Dr. Daniel Martin.
Since the publication of Ulrich Beck’s Risk Society (1992), sociologists and historians have interrogated the frequency of risks of all kinds in modern life: railway accidents, colliery explosions, natural and industrial catastrophes, spills, fires, and collisions, among countless others. However, the emergence of risk as a sociological and economic reality of everyday life in the nineteenth century still lacks significant scholarly theorizing in the humanities. Current scholarship about Victorian contributions to a modern “risk society” requires a sustained dialogue about how the Victorians conceived of accidents, disasters, catastrophes, and risks of all kinds beyond the limited scope of the local. For this issue, we seek papers that address such a dialogue through analysis of Victorian culture’s fascinations with and anxieties about risky activities, behaviors, industries, legalities, philosophies, and forms of expression.
In general, risks have a peculiar temporality. To “run a risk” is to operate in that space between the historian or statistician and the prophet or sage, to exist in a present moment that requires a continual reconsideration of simple linear or chronological time. Risks mark themselves off against past accumulations of data and past accidental phenomena, but they also anticipate spaces and developments for future prevention. We seek original essays that attempt to situate such theoretical and abstract notions of risk within literary, historical, and cultural contexts. We are especially interested in essays that draw connections between specific risk events and Victorian theorizing about the constantly accumulating risks and accidental phenomena of modern life.       
Interested scholars may wish to develop their ideas according to the following topics:
  • Risk and the Victorian railway network
  • Representations of accidents in the Victorian press
  • Risk and Victorian theories of temporality
  • The subjectivity/performance of risky activities and behaviors
  • Victorian insurance and the origins of risk management
  • Insurance frauds and risky business
  • The phenomenology of bodies at risk
  • Risk, athletics, and bodily performance/techniques
  • Risk and the limits of the body
  • Risky bodies and the origins of statistical personhood
  • Rethinking, revising, reevaluating the notion of a “risk society”
  • Risks in their local and global contexts
  • Genres of risks and genres of the accidental
  • Risk and the periodical press
  • Danger, affliction, and disability
  • Transformations in Victorian concepts of space and time
  • Industrial or human-made disasters and catastrophes
  • Risk and catastrophic thinking in Victorian social theory
  • Risk and decadence/ the aesthetics of risk

 Please submit abstracts of 500 words or address enquiries to Dr. Daniel Martin ( by Sept 1, 2013. Final essays will be due by Feb 1, 2014.

Extended Deadline CFP: "Walter Pater: Continuity and Discontinuity" (7/15/2013; 7/4-5/2014)

Deadline for the proposals extended to 15 July 2013

International Walter Pater Conference
Sorbonne University, Paris (France),
4-5 July 2014

As carefully elaborated in The Renaissance, history and art history are made up of continuities and discontinuities between epochs, artistic forms, artists and thinkers. The Renaissance was indeed an unceasing return to the “standard of taste” set in Antiquity, an acknowledgment of its permanence in men’s minds and actions. However, it was also a discovery of “New experiences, new subjects of poetry, new forms of art” (“Two Early French Stories”) that called into question the conditions of life and art. These “exquisite pauses in time” were Pater’s most effective means of linking the continuous and discontinuous. In his other writings, whether published or fragmentary, Pater continued to envisage and apply such patterns to study Europe’s intellectual and cultural traditions. In keeping with this complex patterning, the 2014 Paris International Conference will explore Continuity and Discontinuity in Pater’s writings from an interdisciplinary perspective, reflecting his diverse engagements with literature, the arts, history and philosophy. We invite proposals that examine Continuity/Discontinuity with reference to all aspects of Pater’s work, including but not limited to:

  • Themes and images (representations of violence, cycles and myths of death and rebirth…)
  • Generic, formal and stylistic features
  • Different types of publication (book form, periodicals...)
  • Pater’s reading of other writers from the classics to his contemporaries (intertextuality, the text as a palimpsest, quotations and misquotations, interpretation and misinterpretation…)
  • Response to existing fields of research (anthropology, archaeology, art history, literary criticism…)
  • Pater’s understanding of the visual arts
  • The critical reception of Pater’s writings; his biography. Are there different Paters?

We are grateful for the support of the Walter Pater International Society.

Keynote speakers
Laurel BRAKE

Presentations and papers will be delivered in English. Proposals (300 words) for 20-minute papers and a short bio-bibliography should be sent as a word attachment by 15 July 2013 to the four organizers:
  • Bénédicte COSTE, University of Bourgogne (TIL):
  • Anne-Florence GILLARD-ESTRADA, Rouen University (ERIAC):
  • Martine LAMBERT-CHARBONNIER, Paris-Sorbonne University (VALE):
  • Charlotte RIBEYROL, Paris-Sorbonne University (VALE):
For more information see the conference website:

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Special Issue CFP: Romancing the Long British 19th Century (3/1/2014)

The long British nineteenth century (1789-1914) appears to have the long global twentieth century (including the first decades of the twenty-first) in its thrall. Regency and Victorian settings proliferate in popular romance fiction, ranging from scenes of domestic life within the United Kingdom to British espionage in Europe and British colonial settlements. Retellings and “sequels” of Jane Austen’s novels line our (digital) bookshelves and fill fan-fiction websites, spilling over most recently into the YouTube sensation The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. Such adaptations of Austen’s novels, along with film and TV versions of the Brontë sisters’ Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, and Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South, suggest that modern audiences cannot get enough of stories about Georgians, Victorians, and Edwardians in love.

The Journal of Popular Romance Studies seeks papers on this enduring love affair with 19th-century Britain. Why does a period that is historically associated with the establishment of the Industrial Revolution, the consolidation of the Empire, and the coalescing of middle-class mores now strike us as a particularly “romantic” era? How do popular and middlebrow media from around the world construct, interpret, and recast the world of 19th c. Britain, broadly construed? What do these interpretations say about our current moment and our modern (or postmodern) thoughts and feelings 
about romance?

We welcome submissions that explore these and related questions from any disciplinary or theoretical angle. We invite papers that cover different media, including (paper and digital) literature, film, TV, online content, and marketing.
This Special Issue of The Journal of Popular Romance Studies is guest edited by Jayashree Kamble and Pamela Regis. Please submit scholarly papers of no more than 10,000 words, including notes and bibliography, by March 1 2014, to An Goris, Managing Editor, at  Submissions should be Microsoft Word documents, with citations in MLA format. 

For more information on how to submit a paper, please visit

Friday, May 24, 2013

CFP: NeMLA "Victorian Saints and Sinners Roundtable" (9/30/2013; 4/3-6/2014)

45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 3-6, 2014
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Host: Susquehanna University

The figure of the prostitute is more than an emblem for mid Victorian religious, social, and sanitary reform; she is emblematic of challenges to the domestic narrative of a morally centered middle class that was at the heart of the British Empire’s self-identity. The prostitute is representative of increased anxieties about miscegenation, sexuality, suffragist movements, and the visibility of women in roles outside the private sphere.

This roundtable seeks participants who interrogate the keen interest of the Victorians in missionary work, philanthropy, and other reform efforts designed to save women from lives of prostitution at home in the heart of the British Empire during the years 1837-1901.Topics of inquiry include but are not limited to:

  • The role or portrayal of the fallen woman in literature or art (Possible authors include D.G. Rossetti, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Rudyard Kipling, Thomas Hardy, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Gissing, Amy Levy)
  • Portrayals of the Salvation Army or similar movements in novels, short stories, poems, drama, or periodicals
  • Reform texts (In Darkest England and the Way Out, etc.) and social exposés (the 1861 edition of London Labour and the London Poor, Havelock Ellis, etc.)
  • The artistic representation of specific reformers and their efforts to end prostitution (such as William Gladstone, the Salvation Army, etc.)
  • Women writing and campaigning for change around The Woman Question (Frances Power Cobbe, Sarah Stickney Ellis, Annie Besant, Dinah Mullock Craik etc.,)
  • The Contagious Diseases Acts of 1864, 1866, and 1869 and medical reformers like William Acton and their literary impact

Please submit 250-300 word abstracts, along with a brief biographical statement, in .doc or .docx format to Anna Brecke ( and Rebekah Greene (

Deadline:  September 30, 2013
Please include with your abstract:
Name and Affiliation
Email address
Postal address
Telephone number
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)

CFP: NeMLA "Amateur Production: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Nonprofessional Practices" (9/30/2013; 4/3-6/2014)

Seminar co-chairs: Mary Isbell (University of Connecticut) and Robin C. Whittaker (St. Thomas University)

45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 3-6, 2014
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Host: Susquehanna University

Clay Shirky argues in Cognitive Surplus (2010) that, “As long as the assumed purpose of media is to allow ordinary people to consume professionally created material, the proliferation of amateur-created stuff will seem incomprehensible” (19). Shirky’s assessment offers one way of theorizing the longstanding dismissal of amateur production as inferior and even damaging to the work of professionals. This seminar will explore various ways of theorizing this dismissal, consider how amateur production has contributed to cultural history, and imagine how it will continue to shape culture in the digital age.

Encouraged by productive seminars on amateur performance at NeMLA 2011 (Amateur Performance in the Long Nineteenth Century) and 2012 (Methodologies of Amateur Theatre Studies), we are proposing a third seminar session, this time seeking papers that respond to and/or theorize amateur production across fields of art and science. Scholarly conversations on amateur literature, journalism, film, fashion, design, science, and sport have for the most part been confined to their respective disciplines. This interdisciplinary session will expand and complicate these conversations to consider the concept of the “amateur” on a larger scale, even in periods before a person doing something “for the love of it” was referred to as an amateur.

We encourage explorations across periods: from nineteenth-century amateur scientists to authors of fan fiction today, and from medieval folk ludi and craft-guild theatre to the current trend in dad bands. Because the term “amateur” has fluctuated in meaning and value in English from its emergence as a synonym for nonprofessional in the late eighteenth century, proposals should address how “amateur” will be defined in the paper and detail what constitutes “amateur production” and/or an “amateur product” for the particular field and period addressed. We also encourage papers addressing how professionally produced media (novels, films, reviews, etc.) depict amateur productions.

This session will be run as a seminar (papers circulated in advance with emphasis on discussion during the session). Please send proposals of 250-500 words electronically (.doc) by September 30, 2013 to Mary Isbell ( and Robin C. Whittaker (

Please include with your abstract:
Name and Affiliation
Email address
Postal address
Telephone number
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)

Event: The Santa Fe Opera Presents "Oscar Wilde: Celebrity or Notoriety" (7/25-28/2013)

In preparation for the world premiere of Theodore Morrison’s production of Oscar: The Love that Dared (an opera based on the life and loves of Oscar Wilde) the Santa Fe Opera will be hosting a symposium on Wilde.

Merlin Holland, biographer, editor, and only grandchild of Wilde will give the keynote address on Thursday, July 25 to kick-off the symposium. The next few days will include a variety of events, including papers, staged readings, round table discussion, all leading up to the world premiere.

Registration is $85. For more information contact or call 505-946-2417.

For more on Morrison’s production see the Santa Fe Opera’s page on:

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Event: "On Cosmopolitanism" the Birkbeck Forum for Nineteenth-Century Studies (5/30/2013)

Next week's Birkbeck Forum for Nineteenth-Century Studies will feature Stefano Evangelista (Oxford), Alex Murray (Exeter), and Matthew Potolsky (Utah) presenting on 'On Cosmopolitanism' on Thursday 30 May 2013 from 6:00-8:00pm.

Key-note Titles:  
  • Stephano Evangelista (Oxford): 'Cosmopolitanism and Sexual Freedom in George Egerton's Norwegian Stories'
  • Alex Murray (Exeter): '"Venice, sans hope": Transatlantic Decadence and New York Writing'

  • Matthew Potolsky (Utah): 'Aestheticism and Politics'
Unless otherwise noted, all sessions take place in the Keynes Library (Room 114, School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square, London, UK, WC1H 0PD). All sessions are free and welcome to the public.

For more information and abstracts for the speakers' presentations, please visit the website at: