Monday, 30 January 2012

Calls for papers: a weekly round up

MLA 2013: Victorian Division panels on Victorian Attention and Victorian Distraction 3-6 January 2013

The 2013 MLA convention will be held in Boston. The Victorian Division seeks abstracts for a panel on Victorian Attention.  Did Victorians attend to their world in particular ways?  Were their concepts of attention themselves distinct from those of other periods?  What does it mean to “pay” attention in the nineteenth century? The Victorian Division also seeks abstracts for a panel on Victorian Distraction.  What are the peculiarly Victorian modes by which attention goes astray?  Why has the nineteenth-century continuum of distraction—from mild absent-mindedness to full-on madness—become so foreshortened?  Who or what drives literary characters to distraction and why?  What is the precise quality of a beneficial distraction?  When does attention become distraction, or vice versa?  What does Victorian psychology have to say about any of these topics?

More information about the CFP, including a list of possible topics, is available here. More information about the 2013 MLA conference is available hereAbstracts of 500 words and CV should be emailed to Elaine Freedgood ( by 1 March 2012.

MLA 2013: Print and Beyond: Publishing Rossetti, Morris and the Aesthetes 3-6 January 2013

As in 2012, the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing and the William Morris Society in the United States are proposing a joint panel for the 2013 Modern Language Association conference. The panel title is "Print and Beyond: Publishing Rossetti, Morris and the Aesthetes".

This proposed joint session with the William Morris Society will consider material presentations of Pre-Raphaelite works in a variety of media.

Abstracts should be submitted to Greg Barnhisel ( by 15 March 2012.

Wounded Bodies, Tortured Souls: Narratives of Victorian and Neo-Victorian Trauma

Postgraduate conference, University of Portsmouth, 14 June 2012.

In recent years the study of trauma has become central to contemporary conceptualisations of personal and collective narratives of pain and loss. Often identified as a ‘modern’ phenomenon, a product of industrialisation and modernisation, trauma emerged as a distinct pathology alongside the rise of a middle-class readership, and accounts of physical and psychological wounds abound in Victorian fiction. In turn, Victorian tropes of trauma have been appropriated by the neo-Victorian novel, often in ways which offer a self-conscious or critical engagement with past representations.

This conference seeks to examine the intersection between the physical and psychical representation of trauma in both Victorian and Neo-Victorian literature. It aims to explore the importance of the relationship between the mind and the body, as well as the relationship between Victorian literary representations and neo-Victorian appropriations. We welcome papers examining representations of trauma in Victorian and neo-Victorian fiction, as well as contributions from the fields of literary theory, cultural studies, and the visual arts.

Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words for papers lasting 20 minutes, and a brief biographical note (100 words), to Emily Hunt or Alex Messem by 16 March 2012

Extended CFP: Locating Revolution: Place, Voice, Community 1780–1820
Aberystwyth 9–12 July 2012

A conference jointly hosted by the Wales and the French Revolution Project at the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies; the Centre for Romantic Studies, Aberystwyth University; and the Department of English, Swansea University.

This conference explores the relation between geography (considered as place, landscape, cartography and real and imagined space) and change during the period of the revolutionary wars. Abstracts for 25-minute papers, and suggestions for panels, should be sent by 16th March 2012 to Angharad Elias (

More information, including a list of suggested topics, is  available here.


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