Friday, 21 September 2012

Calls for papers: a weekly round up

In Search of “Man-Making Words”: Masculinities, Citizenship and the Nation: 1750 – 1945

Newcastle University, Friday 26th July 2013

‘Unless one is five and a half feet tall, has a bass voice and a beard on one’s chin, one has no business being a man’ (Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Julie, ou La nouvelle Héloïse, 1761) 

‘BE A MAN – THAT is the first and last rule of the greatest success in life’ (Albert J. Beveridge, The Young Man and the World 1905)

Although there is a growing body of scholarly literature focusing on theories of masculinity in the social sciences, attention to the construction of masculinities remains underrepresented across the arts and humanities, despite feminist scholarship being a well-established field. For example, while R.W.Connell’s concept of hegemonic masculinities (1995) is a mainstay of scholarship in the social sciences, it rarely surfaces in a discipline such as literary studies. This conference aims to redress this imbalance by asserting the value of investigating and exploring constructions of masculinity in the arts and humanities. In particular, we argue that masculinity becomes particularly pressing when considering the history and construction of nationhood and citizenship. Masculinity haunts the work of theorists of nationhood as varied as Homi Bhabha, Benedict Anderson and Eric Hobsbawm, yet has rarely been investigated explicitly in the arts and humanities, although there are signs that this is beginning to happen. This event aims to bring together researchers from across the UK and beyond working in the intersections between masculinity and discourses of the nation and citizenship. It will interrogate the way that masculinity has been, and still is, constructed as invisible or un-gendered, as well as examining essentialist assumptions. We hope to encourage both the academic community and the public to consider how masculinities are constructed in the period 1750-1945. We invite 250 word proposals for 20 minute papers.

Topics might include, but are not limited to:
-          The role of group identities (e.g. Boy Scouts) in nation-formation
-          Masculinity and warfare
-          The role of the Other in creating paradigms of masculinity
-          Representations of men and/or masculinity in literature
-          Queer theory and theories of sexuality
-          Visual and performative representations e.g. propaganda and satirical maps
-          The male body in discourses of nation

The conference will feature panel sessions, a keynote address by Ana Carden-Coyne and a public lecture by Rachel Woodward. This conference will also feature a roundtable discussion with the keynotes and John Strachan, which will seek to offer an interdisciplinary perspective on the use of theories of masculinities and nation.

Deadline for abstracts: 1st February 2013
We aim to notify successful speakers by the beginning of March 2013. Please email all abstracts and queries to

Organisers: Helen Stark, Marie Stern-Peltz and Rob Thompson, University of Newcastle.

 See the conference website for further details and updates.


Workers and Consumers: The Photographic Industry 1860-1950
De Montfort University, Leicester, 24-25 June 2013

The history of photography has largely been dominated by concerns about aesthetic production and its political framings. Such ‘art historical’ approaches have marginalised the study of the economic base of the medium manifested through a developing photographic industry, its related trades and its mass consumers. Work is now emerging in this field, scattered across a number of disciplines: history, anthropology and history of science in particular. While there has been extensive research on both the politics and the affective qualities of popular photography, family albums, for instance, the missing component in the analysis is often a detailed and empirically informed understanding of the social and economic conditions of product development, labour forces, marketing and consumer demand. This two-day conference aims to bring together a critical mass of research in this area, to explore the state of play in this overlooked but crucial aspect of history of photography, and to suggest new directions for research in the economic, business and industrial history of photography. The conference will explore the period 1860-1950: from the rise of a clearly defined photographic industry, which had a profound effect on the practices and thus social functions of photography, to the expansion of mass colour technologies.

Abstracts of no more than 300 words , for 30 minute papers , should be sent to Professor Elizabeth Edwards ( and Dr Kelley Wilder ( by November 30th 2012.


Navy and Nation, 1688 to the Present

National Maritime Museum, London, 25-27 July 2013

From conflict, culture and science to society, economics and politics, the Royal Navy's relationship with Britain has always been complex and reflexive. It has been the nation's primary arm of defence and the means by which empire was expanded and sustained. In both peace and war, it has shaped and been shaped by the powers of the British state. It has driven and responded to commercial, industrial and technological forces. As an institution, it has defined and reflected not only the nature of Britishness, but its component notions of class, race and gender. As a workplace, it has generated lifestyles that mirror wider norms while also diverging from them.

In July 2013 – and to coincide with the opening of a new permanent gallery of British naval history – the National Maritime Museum will host a major conference addressing the interconnections between the Royal Navy and Britain from 1688 to the present day. Its aim is to examine this naval and national relationship from the broadest possible range of perspectives. As such, the organizers welcome proposals from operational, administrative and technological history through to social, cultural and gender history, and the histories of art, material culture and literature. By these means, the conference will endeavour to inter-relate the varied approaches to the Navy represented in recent scholarship. Key themes will include:

  • The Navy and national or imperial identity
  • The aims, methods and consequences of naval warfare
  • The Navy and popular culture
  • The naval hero
  • The Navy and technology
  • The Navy and issues of class, gender, race or age
  • The Navy and politics, finance or the state
  • The Navy and trade, commerce or industry
  • Social histories of the Navy and of recruiting
  • The Navy in peacetime
Please submit proposals of 300 words for individual papers, along with a short CV to . Panel proposals are also encouraged, though preference will be given to those that display disciplinary or chronological diversity. We intend to publish a selection of papers as a volume of conference proceedings.

Abstracts due: 14 September 2012


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