Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Calls for papers: a weekly round-up

'Adam's Dream': Imaginative Incarnations in the Long Eighteenth Century
Eighteenth-Century and Romantic Studies Graduate Conference
Cambridge University, 13-14 April 2013

The conference will consist of six panels, chaired by Cambridge faculty members, during which graduate students will deliver papers of roughly twenty minutes in length.

The conference committee is pleased to announce that its External Respondent will be Professor Michael O’Neill of the University of Durham. Michael O’Neill has published books, editions, chapters, and articles on many aspects of Romantic literature, especially the work of Percy Bysshe Shelley, on Victorian poetry, and on an array of British, Irish, and American twentieth- and twenty-first-century poets.

The conference’s theme is drawn from Keats’s allusion to ‘Adam’s Dream’ - 'He awoke and found it truth' - which captures a major concern for eighteenth-century and Romantic aesthetics and literature. We welcome proposals of c. 500 words for papers that seek to engage with imaginative incarnations in the long eighteenth century. These may include, but are by no means limited to:

-The relationship between perception and truth

-Dreams, myth and poetic prophecy

-Imaginary/imaginative conceptions of the body and/or physical world

-Religious visions or ideas of incarnation

-Emphatically non-religious visions of the same

-Realisation of imagined physicality

-Philosophies of the imagination and their relationship to literature

Applications should be emailed along with an academic CV to cambridgegradconference@gmail.com by 23:59 GMT on 10 February 2012. Conference admission will be £15 and will include refreshments during the day. Accommodation may be available via Cambridge Rooms.

For further information, please see here.

Gender and Political Culture, 1400-1800’: A Joint Conference organised by History and the Centre for Humanities, Music and Performing Arts (HuMPA) at Plymouth University and the Umeå Group for Pre-modern Studies
Plymouth University, 29-31 August 2013

Keynote Speakers: Professor Barbara J. Harris (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Professor Merry Wiesner-Hanks (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)

This conference investigates gender and political culture during the period 1400 to 1800, and the organizers welcome proposals for papers on topics related to the conference theme. The conference aims to create possibilities for comparative research and is therefore looking to attract a broad variety of studies across periods, disciplines and geographical regions. We also wish to attract both senior scholars and doctoral students. During the conference there will be sessions where participants present papers, and a workshop where participants may present work in progress or project ideas.

Proposals are invited for papers that treat the following indicative areas:

• the relationship between gender, power and political authority
• gendered aspects of monarchy; representations of power and authority
• gender, office-holding, policy-making and counsel
• courts, patronage and political influence
• elite culture and political networks
• gender, the public sphere and political participation
• popular politics, protest and petitioning
• manuscript, print, oral, material and visual cultures
• news, intelligence and the spread of information
• political ideas, ideologies and language
• conceptualizations of ‘public’ and ‘private’ spheres and what constituted ‘power’ and ‘politics’
• the family as a ‘political unit’
• the politicization of social activities: marriage-arranging, placing children in other households, gift-giving, hospitality and letter-writing

Proposals for papers or workshops, including titles and abstracts (of no more than 300 words) and a brief author biography should be sent to Professor James Daybell, Plymouth University or Professor Svante Norrhem, Umeå University before 1 March 2013. There are also a small number of conference bursaries available for junior scholars, which will cover the conference fee and accommodation for three nights. If you are interested in being considered for one of the bursaries, please send a CV, brief covering letter and letter of recommendation along with your title and abstract. More information can be found here.

Melancholy Minds and Painful Bodies: Genealogy, Geography, Pathogeny
University of Liverpool, 9-11 July 2013

Strange Contraries in thee combine,
Both hell and Heaven in thee meet,
Thou greatest bitter, greatest sweet
No pain is like thy pain, no pleasure too like thine.
                               John Norris, 1687

One of the major developments in the study of melancholia over the last thirty years has been the rise to  aesthetic and  cultural prominence  of varieties of negative emotions proposed and discussed as melancholy, including different conceptions, analyses, and portrayals from grief to insanity. Most recently, Lars von Trier’s film Melancholia (2011) happens to be the melodramatic adaptation of the concept fuelled by cinematic symbols.  Correspondingly, often observed as ‘a central European discourse’, melancholia has resurfaced to embody complementary or paradoxical notions not merely in the literary analysis of texts and contexts, but it has also emerged to retrieve its historical categorization. The cultural  and social  history of emotions entwined with modern medical and psychiatric lexicalization has opened new  pathways to provide  relative definitions of melancholia. However, theories about the choice of analogies for melancholy, whether aesthetic, cinematic, religious, or medical, somehow fail to distinguish the connections between  contrary factors involved in melancholia.

It is also noteworthy that theories of characterization, no matter of what kind, tend to reformulate and evaluate contrary factors for the sake of preserving ‘superiority’ according to prevalent taste at each moment in time. In Britain, for example, individual and collective melancholia has been appreciated as a sign of genius and national pride at one time  and announced as a national malady at another. Analogous is the contemporary history of behavioural rather than cognitive attributes to grief,  e.g. tearfulness. Pain, in comparison, is bodily and often mental distress which in the past was closely perceived in relation to melancholia, but today research on pain is divorced from depression let alone melancholy. Thus, we miss the ‘melancholy-pain bridge’ in contemporary scholarship of mental and physical suffering. On the other hand, while pain is seen through the lens of universality, with management models stretching from Chinese medicine to Latin America, melancholia has rarely been investigated beyond the Western borders with regard to its genealogy, pathology, pathogeny,  and management. Whether this geographical focus is a matter of re-establishing  pre-eminence or  in want of psycholinguistic reference, thereby centred on a gap in universal scientific communication, it invites intriguing and challenging enquiries.

We  welcome contributions  from different fields in humanities, social and life sciences in the following categories and other relevant areas:

-Diversity in the geography of melancholia and pain
-The relationship between Western theories of emotions and Oriental conceptions
-The European hypothesis of melancholia-pain in non-European cultures
-Orientalism, grief, and abstinence
-Emotionality as negativity
-Gender attributes and tearfulness
-Art history, muscle tension, and the painful posture
-Interpretation, assumption, semantic relation
-Fear, Pain, and melancholy dominance
--Depression and pain
-Paranoia, melancholia, and pain
-Misconceptions; cyclothymia and bipolar disorder
-Melancholy appropriation, ethnicity, multicultural perspectives
-Cosmology and elegiac pain management
-Cinematic symbols
-Literary emotionality, fictive superiority
-Embodied cognition
-Anaesthetics, the relationship between medical management and other models
-Lyric manifestation of melancholy and pain

Abstracts and panel proposals of up to 300 words per 20-minute papers are welcome plus a short biographical note. If you wish to attend without presenting a paper, please email the organisers with your CV and a statement as to how your research relates to the conference. Postgraduate students can apply for the Dr Wasfia Mhabak Memorial Grant by sending your abstract, 1000-word research statement, and CV to the conference board.

A selection of papers expanded and edited after the conference will be considered for publication in the International Journal of Literature and Psychology (issues 2014). Full details can be found here.
The submission deadline is 1 March 2013. Email your proposal to painpara@liv.ac.uk

Victorians Institute 2013 Conference: Through the Looking Glass
Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN, 1-2 November 2013

Please send 300-500 word proposals for papers and a 1-page CV via email to Rebecca.King@mtsu.edu by 1 May 2013.

We invite papers on any aspect of the theme, which refers to Lewis Carroll’s 1871 sequel to Alice in Wonderland, but invites much wider consideration.  The story begins on November 4, the day before Guy Fawkes Night, and is also associated with issues of time and space, the game of chess, fairy tale and fantasy, neologism, history, curiosity, epistemology, dress and wigs, and of course, mirrors.

Possible topics might include mirrors and mirroring; microscopes and telescopes; Victorian mathematics, science, and science fiction; arts and crafts; illustrations and media adaptations; language; hybridity; history and discovery; new worlds and cultures; travel; empire; Victorian pedagogy; childhood; gender and sexuality; fantasy and play; pseudonyms; biography; photography; music; linguistic play; poetic parody; and others.

Selected papers from the conference will be refereed for the Victorians Institute Journal annex at NINES. Limited travel subventions will be available from the Victorians Institute for graduate students whose institutions provide limited or no support. Please visit the website for information about the conference, the Victorians Institute, and Victorians Institute Journal.


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