Monday, September 30, 2013

Lecture Series: VSAO presents Daniel Wright on "Symbolic Logic and the Buried Life" (11/7/2013)

Victorian Studies Association of Ontario (VSAO) 
Evening Lecture Series: Daniel Wright on "Symbolic Logic and the Buried Life."
November 7, 2013

Daniel Wright is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Toronto. He is currently at work on a book entitled Bad Logic: Reasoning about Desire in the Victorian Novel. A portion of this project, on tautology in Trollope, is forthcoming in the Winter 2013 issue of ELH.

The talk will take place on Thursday, Nov 7th at 7:30pm, at the Spadina Museum, 285 Spadina Rd, just north of Davenport Road. 

Following Daniel's talk, we'll enjoy a private tour of the Spadina Museum, a Victorian home that has recently been restored to reflect 1920s and 30s interior design. For more on the Spadina Museum and its restoration, please see:

For more on the VSAO, including information on future events, CFPs, and ourSeptember 2013 newsletter, please see:

CFP: William Morris Society of Canada 2014 Symposium "Morris & History" (12/15/2013; 3/22/2014)

William Morris Society of Canada
2014 Symposium: Morris & History
University of Toronto
March 22, 2014
Deadline: December 15, 2013

The William Morris Society of Canada invites proposals for 20-minute papers to be presented at a 2014 symposium on Morris and History. Considerations of Morris's interest in history and of historical influences and connections implicit within one or more aspects of his work are welcome. Papers may explore these themes in relation to his many artistic and literary endeavours, to development of his political thinking and also to changes in his ideas about history itself.

Please send electronic copies of proposals (300-500 words) and a brief biographical statement to Richard Bishop, Program Committee Chair  ( by December 15, 2013.

CFP: One-Day Symposium on Arthur Conan Doyle’s Professor Challenger Narratives(10/14/2013; 12/9/2013)

Challenger Unbound
Department of English, UCL
December 9, 2013
Deadline October 14, 2013

Professor John Sutherland (UCL)

Keynote Speakers:
Professor Ian Duncan (UC Berkeley)
Professor Michael Saler (UC Davis)
Professor Jeremy Tambling (U of Manchester)

A century has passed since the publication of Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World. This one-day symposium offers an ideal opportunity to take stock of the Professor Challenger narratives and to reassess what these three novels and two short stories can offer to new generations of scholars, students, and enthusiasts. Potential topics might include:

  • The Twentieth-Century Quest Romance.
  • Arthur Conan Doyle: Low Modernist.
  • Arthur Conan Doyle’s Contribution to Science-Fiction and/or Speculative Fiction
  • Modernity and the State in Early Twentieth-Century Popular Fiction.
  • Science and the Popular Press, 1912-1930.
  • Science as a Public Discourse, 1912-1930.
  • Science as State-Craft, 1912-1930.
  • Spiritual vs. Material Science.
  • Grief, Trauma, Mourning and Science during and after the Great War.
  • Twentieth-Century Medievalism/Primitivism.
  • Spiritualism, Science and the Great War.
  • The Strand Magazine in the Twentieth-Century.
  • The Twentieth-Century Afterlife of “Victorian” Ideology/Thought/Literary Forms.
  • Weapons of Mass Destruction, 1912-1930.
  • Heroism, Chivalry and Masculinity after the Great War.
  • Science, Technology and European Competition, 1912-1930.
  • The Twentieth-Century Legacy of Arthur Conan Doyle in Europe.
  • Machines, Weapons, Products, Commodities.
  • Conan Doyle’s Non-Fiction, 1912-1930.
  • The Endurance of Professor Challenger in Critical Theory (Deleuze & Guattari, Jon McKenzie etc...).
  • Early Treatments of Capitalist/Communist Confrontations in Popular Fiction.

The organizer is soliciting abstracts of 200-300 words or completed articles of 6,000-8,000 words. Any inquiries should be directed to Tom Ue ( <>). Abstracts should be submitted by October 14, 2013.

CFP: "Devouring: Food, Drink and the Written Word, 1800-1945" (10/31/2013; 3/8/2014)

University of Warwick
March 8, 2014
Deadline: October 31, 2013

Keynote speakers: 
Professor Nicola Humble (University of Roehampton) 
Dr Margaret Beetham (University of Salford)

“Devouring: Food, Drink and the Written Word, 1800-1945
This one day interdisciplinary conference will explore the place of food, drink and acts of consumption within the textual culture of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The years 1800-1945 are marked by food adulteration scandals, the growth of the temperance movement, and significant reforms in the regulation and legislation of food standards, as well as the influence of the colonies on British cuisine and a relationship with food and drink made increasingly complex by wartime paucity and rationing. These changes are both precipitated and responded to in a vast array of textual forms, including periodicals, the press, recipe books, household management manuals, propaganda, literature and poetry. This conference will therefore engage with the intersections of food/drink cultures and the written word.

The committee members are seeking papers that explore how food and drink were written, experienced and imagined during the period: as a commodity, a luxury item, a source of poison or nutrition, in its abundance or in short supply. The committee members hope to attract all researchers who have an interest in the culinary cultures of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, including those working in the histories of medicine, art and food, as well as anthropologists, historians of the nineteenth century and war years, and those working in literary studies. By bringing together scholars from many disciplines, we hope to provide a space in which to open up dialogue about nineteenth and early twentieth century narratives of eating, drinking, consuming, and their worth, and to provide a timely examination of our relationship with food and drink at a moment when economic and ecological pressures herald a re-appropriation of the values of wartime thrift and Victorian domestic economy.

Possible topics might include, but are not limited to, the following:
Representations of food and drink in specific texts and their wider implications.
Cultures of eating, drinking and cooking.
Social histories of food and drink.
The uses of food and drink in the articulation (or challenging) of community, nation or empire.
Food or drink as metaphor/trope/structural device.
The relationship(s) between reading and eating or drinking.
The role of food and drink in cultural constructions of domestic space.
Perspectives from ‘fat studies’/‘fat feminism’.
Gendered practices of food and drink consumption.
Food and drink in medical/psychiatric discourse: alcoholism, eating disorders, compulsive behaviour.
The cultural legacies and/or persistence of Victorian and early twentieth century cultural imaging of food and drink.
Recipe books, household management manuals and aspirational food.
The narrating of gluttony or hunger.
Textual representations of farms, breweries, pubs and restaurants.
Applicants should note that papers may also be considered for inclusion in a possible publication resulting from the conference.
Abstracts of no more than 300 words, accompanied by a brief biographical note of no more than 100 words, should be sent to by October 31, 2013.

This conference is being organised by Mary Addyman, Laura Wood and Christopher Yiannitsaros (University of Warwick).

For more information visit:

Sunday, September 29, 2013

CFP: MVSA 2014 "Political Violence at Home and Abroad" (10/31/2013; 4/11-13/2014)

Midwest Victorian Studies Association 2014
The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
April 11-13, 2014
Deadline: October 31, 2013

Seminar Leader: Professor Bill Meier, Department of History, Texas Christian University

“Political Violence at Home and Abroad”
Violence harnessed to political programmes mushroomed in the 19th century alongside the growth of ‘-isms’:  socialism, conservatism, trade unionism, nationalism, terrorism, anarchism, and the like.  Yet the distinction between “ordinary” crime and “political” crime was a blurry one, and governments, police, journalists, even “political criminals” themselves attributed divergent meanings to their menacing behavior.

This seminar seeks participants who wish to explore such dimensions of “political crime” as its motivations, representation, public perception, and legal definition, among other themes.  The seminar leaders also wish to examine the language Victorians used to discuss political violence, including “outrage,” “terrorism,” “atrocity,” and “frightfulness.”  The seminar leaders are especially interested to compare political violence in Britain to its manifestations throughout the empire in order to assess how the location of violence shaped Victorians’ understanding of such behavior.

Participants will write 5-7 page papers that are pre-circulated to the other participants prior to the conference.  During the two-hour conversation the seminar leader and participants will identify important points of intersection and divergence between the papers and identify future areas of inquiry and collaboration.  The seminar format allows a larger number of scholars to participate in MVSA and seek financial support from their respective institutions as they discuss a shared area of scholarly interest.  Seminars are limited to 10 participants.

Send a 300-word abstract and 1-page vita (both as MWord documents) by October 31, 2013, to Bill Meier:

The Midwest Victorian Studies Association is an interdisciplinary organization welcoming scholars from all disciplines who share an interest in nineteenth-century British history, literature, and culture. For more on the conference:

CFP: MVSA 2014 "Sensational Violence: 'The Mysteries Which Are at Our Own Doors'" (10/31/2013; 4/11-13/2014)

Midwest Victorian Studies Association 2014
The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
April 11-13, 2014
Deadline: October 31, 2013

Seminar Leader: Professor Lisa Surridge, Department of English, University of Victoria

"Sensational Violence: 'The Mysteries Which Are at Our Own Doors'"
In his review of sensation fiction in The Nation (1865), Henry James wrote that, “to Mr. Collins belongs the credit of having introduced into fiction those mysterious of mysteries, the mysteries which are at our own doors.” James’s remark captures the sensation novel’s capacity to surveil, strip, and probe domestic spaces, lives, and even bodies.

This seminar will welcome scholars interested in the capacity of the sensation novel and/or the sensational press to scrutinize violence in what Victorians strove to construct as the “private” sphere—that is, to expose spousal violence, sexual violence, violence against children, and related domestic crimes. The seminar leaders also invite papers that consider how such texts constructed privacy even as they exploded the very notion of a private sphere free of public surveillance.

Participants will write 5-7 page papers that will be pre-circulated to the other participants prior to the conference.  During our two-hour conversation, the seminar leader and participants will identify important points of intersection and divergence among the papers and identify future areas of inquiry and collaboration.  The seminar format allows a larger number of scholars to participate in MVSA and to seek financial support from their respective institutions to attend the conference and discuss a shared area of scholarly interest.  Seminars are limited to 10 participants.

Send a 300-word abstract and 1-page CV (both as Word documents) by October 31, 2013 to Lisa Surridge:

The Midwest Victorian Studies Association is an interdisciplinary organization welcoming scholars from all disciplines who share an interest in nineteenth-century British history, literature, and culture. For more on the 2014 MVSA conference:

CFP: MVSA 2014 "Colonial Violence" (10/31/2013; 4/11-13/2014)

Midwest Victorian Studies Association 2014
The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
April 11-13, 2014
Deadline: October 31, 2013

Seminar Leader:  Professor Richard Price, Department of History, University of Maryland, College Park

“Colonial Violence”
Historical studies of violence are legion.  Historians have long addressed the legal, social, cultural and political aspects of violence, as reflected both in criminal activity and in domestic interactions.  It is well-known, for example, that the violence of “primitive rebels” in peasant societies is structurally and politically distinct from violence in “modern,” urbanized industrial societies.  And much attention has been paid by historians and others to the developmental implications of these differences. 

It is, therefore, all the more strange that until recently colonial violence has not seemed to greatly interest students of empire.  Yet violence in colonial societies was both endemic and quotidian.  It was at one and the same time an abiding feature of “official” policy and, it would seem, often an everyday affair that stained and marked social relations in colonial societies.  But it remains true that in most accounts of the imperial experience (limiting that just to Britain alone) the nature of violence is not accorded the fundamental importance that it probably deserves.  As yet, for example, there is no subject volume on violence in the recent Oxford History of the British Empire.  Of course, most historians and others would nod in agreement with the notion that the colonial experience was inherently coercive and violent.  But they would be hard pressed to go much further than that to provide a typology of colonial violence.  It is only in the last few years, for example, that the fond notion of Britain’s peaceful exit from empire has been undermined by studies that show just how untidily violent it actually was.  Similarly, it is only recently that studies have appeared that focus on the historical sociology of violence in particular colonies, such as India. 

There is, therefore, enormous scope for an inter-disciplinary discussion and treatment of colonial violence.  This seminar will explore the historical and cultural dimensions and representations of colonial violence in Britain’s Victorian empire. The panel organizers are particularly anxious that the question of colonial violence be addressed from the standpoint of different disciplines.  And the panel chairs encourage scholars working on any aspect of this question to submit proposals.  The kinds of questions that could be addressed include: the political dynamics of colonial violence; the relationship between violence and settler politics.  To what extent is the colonial experience inherently genocidal towards indigenous peoples?  What is the psychology of colonial violence?  What are the relationships between violence in the colonies and the law?  How do the many ideological rationalization of empire justify and explain colonial violence?  How is colonial violence represented in the culture of empire in the metropole—in its literature, its theater, for example?  

Participants will write 5-7 page papers that are pre-circulated to the other participants prior to the conference.  During the two-hour conversation the seminar leader and participants will identify important points of intersection and divergence between the papers and identify future areas of inquiry and collaboration. The seminar format allows a larger number of scholars to participate in MVSA and seek financial support from their respective institutions as they discuss a shared area of scholarly interest.  Seminars are limited to 10 participants.

Send a 300-word abstract and 1-page vita (both as MWord documents) by October 31, 2013, to Richard Price:

The Midwest Victorian Studies Association is an interdisciplinary organization welcoming scholars from all disciplines who share an interest in nineteenth-century British history, literature, and culture.

CFP: Joint NAVSA/ACCUTE Panel 2014 "Neo-Victorian Uses and Abuses of History" (11/15/2013; 5/24-27/2014)

Joint NAVSA/ACCUTE Panel 2014
Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
May 24 – 27, 2014
Deadline: November 15, 2013

"Neo-Victorian Uses and Abuses of History"
In the relatively new field of Neo-Victorian studies the status of history is the focus of much debate. Is the recourse to the Victorian period necessarily nostalgic? Can the Victorian period be used to critique racism, violence and homophobia? And what of imaginative reconstructions of the Victorian period in genres such as Steampunk: are novels that reconfigure the Victorian period with contemporary technology and issues “historical” or do they call into question totalizing historical narratives?

Possible topics include but are by no means limited to:
  • History, collective memory and nostalgia
  • The commodification of the Victorian period
  • Retro-futurism and the status of history
  • Refiguring colonialism in Neo-Victorian texts
  • Ecohistory and Neo-Victorianism
  • Play and history in Neo-Victorian texts
  • The Victorian period as utopia/dystopia
  • Race, history and Neo-Victorianism
  • Subverting the “Victorian” in Neo-Victorianism

Send 250 word proposals or completed papers for 15-20-minute talks to Martin Danahay .   Deadline: November 15, 2013

CFP: Joint NAVSA/ACCUTE Panel 2014 “Victorian Uses and Abuses of History” (11/15/2013; 5/24-27/2014)

Joint NAVSA/ACCUTE Panel 2014
Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
May 24 – 27, 2014
Deadline: November 15, 2013

“Victorian Uses and Abuses of History”
What were the uses of history in the Victorian period? The period saw the publication of numerous historical novels following the success of Sir Walter Scott’s “Waverley.” Many novelists, including Charles Dickens, Charles Reade, William Makepiece Thackery, Charles Kingsley, George Eliot and Robert Louis Stevenson all addressed history in their novels. The French Revolution figured largely as a historical warning against revolution in the minds of many Victorian sages, while the Fall of Rome could be used to warn against overweening pride in the Empire. History could figure as nightmare in Gothic novels. Inspired by Ruskin and Morris, many looked back to the Medieval period as a source of values and an alternative to industrialized Britain. This call for papers invites proposals for individual or collaborative papers on the theme of "Victorian Uses and Abuses of History.”  

Possible topics include, but are by no means limited to:
  • The Victorian Historical Novel
  • Victorian Medievalism
  • “The Renaissance" according to Victorians
  • Victorian Historians and Historiography
  • Historical Time vs. Geological Time
  • Past and Present Contrasts
  • "Neo" Architecture and Literature of the Victorian Period
  • Historical Self-Consciousness
  • History and Aesthetics
  • Historical Utopias and Dystopias
Send 250 word proposals or completed papers for 15-20-minute talks to Martin Danahay .   Deadline: November 15, 2013

CFP: VSAO-ACCUTE Panel 2014 "Stuff and Stuffing" (11/1/2013; 5/24-27/2014)

The annual VSAO-ACCUTE Panel to be held at the 2014 Congress
Joint Session: Victorian Studies Association of Ontario (VSAO) at ACCUTE
Brock University, St Catharines, Ontario.
May 24-27, 2014
Deadline: November 1, 2013

“Stuff and Stuffing”
Henry James’ infamous condemnation of nineteenth-century novels as “loose baggy monsters” is so perfectly devastating that many forget that the author was posing a question. Flummoxed by a literary form that so readily included “the accidental and the arbitrary” in its representations, James pondered: what do they “artistically mean?” Walter Benjamin, another modern looking back on the nineteenth century with a sense of bewilderment, suggested elliptically that the swollen cushions, ample hangings, and profusion of dust covers, doilies, and antimacassars of the nineteenth-century interior were evidence of a deeply engrained “posture … of struggle and defense.”

This panel seeks to address James and Benjamin’s queries, and, more generally, to explore the profusion of “stuff” in the Victorian era. A notoriously vague term, “stuff” can refer to a workable material that can be molded into other forms—think of the abundance of new commodities and technologies wrought by the industrial revolution, or the discovery of new entities, speciations, and categories of materiality by the burgeoning fields of science. However, “stuff” can also refer to material that remains stubbornly unspecialized, undifferentiated, and inert—dust, batting, and fillings that are useful chiefly in their ability to insulate and take up space. How did the Victorians interact with, represent, and imitate their materially profuse surroundings? What stuffs Victorian texts?

Papers may consider such topics as:
  • Taxidermy and other stuffed animals
  • Crinoline, padding, puffed sleeves, and the stuff of cloth
  • Foodstuffs and stuffing oneself: gluttony, corpulence, and satiation
  • Baggy monsters: rhetorical verbiage, textual excess, narrative bulk, and the serial novel
  • Dickensian stuff: the Cratchitt Christmas goose stuffing, Sir Duddle’s stuffed people; the Veneerings and the Buffers
  • Modernist creations of and reactions to Victorian “stuffiness”
  • Filling in and filling up
  • Household stuff and stuffy houses: billowing curtains, draped fabrics, covers and casings
  • Stuff and nonsense

Questions and submissions should be sent Please submit the following as separate documents by November 1, 2013:
  • a proposal of 300-500 words that has NO identifying marks for the author
  • an abstract of 100 words and a bio of 50 words
  • a proposal sheet, available at:
Please note that speakers must be members of either VSAO or ACCUTE at the time of the conference.  VSAO:

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Reminder: 1st Bi-annual North American Dickens Conference "Pickwickian Endeavors" (9/26-28/2014)

1st Bi-annual North American Dickens Conference
Salem State University, Salem, MA
September 26-28, 2014

The International Dickens Fellowship-North of Boston Branch along with the Planning Committee and Advisory Board will hold the 1st Bi-annual North American Dickens Conference. This three-day conference on Charles Dickens, titled “Pickwickian Endeavors,” will be held on September 26-28, 2014, at Salem State University, Salem, MA. The event will include noted Dickens scholars John Jordan, Professor of English at the University of California, Santa Cruz and Director of the Dickens Project, Natalie McKnight, Assoc. Dean of Faculty Research and Professor of Humanities at Boston University and author of books on Dickens and Victorian Literature, and Lillian Nayder, Professor and Chair of the English Department at Bates College. 

It will also offer lectures and sessions on Dickens work and related cultural events. These include talks by Jan Turnquist, Director of Orchard House, performing ‘Mrs. Jarley’s Wax Works’, Karen Goodno-McQuire, Visiting Lecturer in History at Salem State, whose research shows how Dickens inspires Louisa May Alcott, and a presentation on film adaptations of Dickens’ novels by author Fred Guida. We are pleased to have Gerald Dickens performing and discussing his great, great grandfathers theatrical pleasures. Optional visits with talks will include the House of Seven Gables, Omni Parker House, and other related local historical and literary sites. An additional option will include a day for research and visit to the Fellman Dickens Collection at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute on Monday, September 29, 2014. We hope you will support us and encourage your colleagues and students to attend.

The International Dickens Fellowship, founded in 1902, is a worldwide association of individuals sharing an interest in the life and works of Charles Dickens (1812 - 1870). The Fellowship is based in London, England, at the Charles Dickens Museum, with 48 branches, located in the UK, the USA, Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, India, Japan and the Netherlands.  We hope that this conference will serve as a template for future bi-annual North American & Canadian regional conferences with Dickensian flair.  Please visit for preliminary itinerary, registration, and details.   The International Dickens Fellowship page is also found there. 

Sponsors of the event will have their names on all conference materials and are offered an individual link on the conference website.   We are asking sponsors to add their organizational name to the event, and to contribute to the operating costs.   We thank you in advance for your consideration in  lending  your support  to this  1st  Bi-annual North American Dickens Conference. 

Sponsorship Payments of  $300, $200 or $100.- by Dec. 31, 2013,  will be gratefully received by: Kathy Anderson@ 3 Ronna Rd, Gloucester, MA 01930 and made to the same.

CFP: ESSE 2014 "Gender and Sexuality in Neo-Victorianism" (2/28/2014; 8/29-9/2/2014)

August 29-September 2, 2014
Deadline: February 28, 2014

Convenors: Georges Letissier (U. of Nantes) < > and Maria Isabel Romero Ruiz (U. of
Málaga) <>

The seminar will investigate the centrality of gender and sexuality in “neo-Victorianism”, including both scholarly works (history, cultural studies, social anthropology etc.) and creative works (fiction, film, arts) and the possible productive interaction between the two. The relevance of gender and sexuality identified as foundational at the inception of what is both a genre (with still undefined contours) and an academic discipline will be appraised by addressing questions of representation (performativity, scopophilia, voyeurism) and reception (“sexsational read”, bifocality etc.), without omitting the ethical and ideological implications of such aesthetic choices. The tensions between marginality and norms (queering, gender-bending) and the historical epistemology of sexuality may also be considered.

Please send proposals to both seminar convenors, including name, affiliation, Email, title of paper and abstract (max. 200 words). Deadline for submission of 200-words proposals: February 28, 2014

The conference webpage,, will become active by the end of September 2013.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Graduate Fellowship: RSVP Curran Fellowhsip (10/21/2013)

The Research Society for Victorian Periodicals (RSVP) is pleased to announce the competition for the sixth annual Curran Fellowship, a travel and research grant intended to aid scholars studying 19th-century British magazines and newspapers in making use of primary print and archival sources. The Curran Fellowship is made possible through the generosity of the late Eileen Curran, Professor Emerita of English, Colby College, and inspired by her pioneering research on Victorian periodicals. This year, up to five prizes will be awarded in the amount of $4000 each.

The projected research may involve study of any aspects of the periodical press in any of its manifold forms, and may range from within Britain itself to the many countries, within and outside of the Empire, where British magazines and newspapers were bought, sold, and read during “the long nineteenth century” (ca. 1780-1914). Applicants should explain how their research will help to advance our understanding of the 19th-century press.

Applications for the Curran Fellowship for research to be undertaken in 2014 must be submitted in electronic form and sent to by October 21, 2013. Applicants should send a c.v., the names and contact information of two scholars who are familiar with the applicant and his or her research goals, and a description of the project to which these funds would be applied. Please begin the filename of your application with your last name.  Any queries about the application may be sent to the same address. A set of additional guidelines for applicants may be found at

Applicants will be notified by January 20, 2014. Successful applicants will be required to submit a brief report to RSVP at the conclusion of the funded portion of their project, describing the results of their research, and are asked to acknowledge the fellowship in any published work based on that research.

The full call for applications, as well as reports by past winners, may be found at 

The Research Society for Victorian Periodicals (RSVP) is an interdisciplinary and international society of scholars devoted to exploring the 19th-century periodical press, both magazines and newspapers. To learn more about RSVP, visit

Registration Open: Arthur Morrison and the East End (11/2/2013)

Arthur Morrison and the East End
Queen Mary, University of London
November 2, 2013

This conference marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of realist novelist Arthur Morrison, best remembered for his notorious A Child of the Jago (1896). Relentless in its bleakness and violence, the novel captured the desperate struggle to survive among the poorest in the East End. This is the first academic conference to focus on Morrison and features established and emergent scholars of his fiction.

It will be held in the Octagon at Queen Mary, University of London, the site of the library of the former People’s Palace, where Morrison was employed from 1888-90.
Keynote speakers:

Professor Simon Joyce (College of William and Mary, USA), author of Capital Offenses: Geographies of Class and Crime in Victorian London (2003) and The Victorians in the Rearview Mirror (Ohio University Press, 2007)
Sarah Wise, author of The Blackest Streets: The Life and Death of a Victorian Slum (Vintage 2009).

Panelists include:
Professor Dan Bivona (Arizona State University)
Eliza Cubitt (University College London)
Ruth Doherty (Trinity College, Dublin)
Professor Seth Koven (Rutgers University)
Victoria Lefevre (Royal Holloway, University of London)
Professor Diana Maltz (Southern Oregon University)
Dr. Nadia Valman (Queen Mary, University of London)

Follow this link to view the conference schedule:

Conference organizers: Dr. Diana Maltz (Southern Oregon University) and Dr. Nadia Valman (Queen Mary, University of London).

Please direct enquiries to Dr. Nadia Valman at

Tickets: £10/£5 concession. Tickets should be purchased from the Queen Mary e-shop.

Friday, September 13, 2013

CFP: NeMLA 2014 "Fresh Perspectives on Mary Russell Mitford" (9/30/2013; 4/3-6/2014)

45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Susquehanna University

April 3-6, 2014
Deadline: September 30, 2013

Known on both sides of the Atlantic for her poetry, drama, and prose fiction, Mitford enjoyed a long, prolific, and successful literary career that spanned from the 1810s to the 1840s. Papers are welcome on any aspect of Mary Russell Mitford’s work. Possible topics include, but are not limited to, her treatment of gender, her work in multiples genres, and her extensive network of literary friendships and professional rivalries.

Please email 250-500 word abstracts by September 30th to Kellie Donovan-Condron (

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: The Michael Field Centenary Conference "New Directions in Fin de Siècle Studies" (12/31/2013; 7/11-12/2014)

The Michael Field Centenary Conference: New Directions in Fin de Siècle Studies
Institute of English Studies, Senate House, University of London
July 11-12, 2014
Deadline: December 31, 2013

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:
Professor Joseph Bristow (UCLA)
Professor Margaret D. Stetz (University of Delaware)

Michael Field (Katharine Bradley and Edith Cooper) occupies an increasingly central role as one of the most fascinating figures of the fin de siècle. Following ground-breaking revisionist scholarship of the 1990s which rediscovered Bradley and Cooper’s poetry, the last twenty years has seen a major resurgence in work on Michael Field – reflecting Bradley and Cooper’s own belief that their work would not be appreciated until sometime in the distant future.

This major international conference will mark the Michael Field Centenary, bringing together world-renowned scholars of fin de siècle literature, poetry, life writing, women’s writing and gender and sexuality.

The Michael Field Centenary conference also aims to acknowledge and celebrate the diversity and vitality of new scholarship surrounding Michael Field and fin de siècle literature generally, providing a platform for new voices and perspectives from postgraduate/ early career scholars. As the first major Michael Field conference following the 2004 ‘Michael Field and their World’ conference at University of Delaware, the committee aims to assess the how the ‘field’ has changed over the last ten years; for example, following the publication of significant works such as Margaret D. Stetz and Cheryl A. Wilson’s Michael Field and their World (2007), Marion Thain’s ‘Michael Field’: Poetry, Aestheticism, and the Fin de Siècle and Sharon Bickle’s The Fowl and the Pussycat: Love Letters of Michael Field, 1876-1909 (2008).

We invite proposals for 20 minute papers on topics related to Michael Field and fin de siècle culture, which may include, but are not limited to:

  • Fin de siècle poetry
  • Late-Victorian literary culture
  • Aestheticism and Decadence
  • Verse drama/closet drama
  • Drama and performance
  • Poetic form, prosody, the lyric
  • History, time, historiography
  • Interactions with different periods/literary traditions
  • Life writing, biography, autobiography
  • Gender, sexuality, desire
  • Michael Field’s circle/influences
  • Fashion and dress culture
  • Catholicism and religious writing
  • Art and design
  • Book history, book design, printing
  • The New Woman, the Female Aesthete
  • Modernity, modernism
  • Michael Field’s influence on later writers

Deadline for abstracts: December 31, 2013
Please email 300-word abstracts to

Organisers: Dr Ana Parejo Vadillo (Birkbeck, University of London), Dr Sarah Parker (University of Stirling) and Dr Marion Thain (University of Sheffield)

Tickets Available: VPFA Wilkie Collins Research Day (11/9/2013)

The VPFA is pleased to announce a Study Day devoted to the work of Wilkie Collins.
November 9th, 2013
Wilkie Collins: New Directions and Readings

Tickets are £10 and are available
here. Please note that lunch will not be provided

Welcome (Janice Allan and Joanne Ella Parsons)

Keynote by William Baker (Northern Illinois University): “Wilkie Collins: Scholarship and Criticism Past, Present and Future”

11:15-11:30: COFFEE

Tabitha Sparks (McGill University), “Wilkie Collins’s The Law and the Lady and Feminine Reason: ‘Quite incredible, and nevertheless quite true’”
Meredith Miller (Falmouth University), “Popular Interiority and Political Address: The New Magdalen and The Law and the Lady”
Tara MacDonald (University of Amsterdam), “Sympathetic Doubles in Collins’s Fiction”

12:45-2:00 LUNCH

Catherine Delafield (Independent Scholar), “‘The patience of cats,… the ferocity of tigers’: Competitive Editing and the Serialization of The Moonstone.”
Caroline Radcliffe (University of Birmingham), “The Lighthouse by Wilkie Collins: ‘situations dramatique non encore exploitees’”
Jessica Cox (Brunel University) “Women in White: Neo-Victorianism and Wilkie Collins’s Literary Descendants”

3:15-3:30 COFFEE

Anne-Marie Beller (Loughborough University), “‘I want a husband to vex, or a child to beat’: Sensation and Emotion as Redemption in Armadale”
Joanne Ella Parsons (Bath Spa University), “Fosco’s Fat: Bodily Control and Transgressive Consumption in The Woman in White”

Roundtable discussion on No Name Reading Project
Pete Orford (Buckingham University), Anne-Marie Beller (University of Loughborough), Hazel Mackenzie (Buckingham) and Joanne Shattock (Leicester).

If you wish to be kept informed of events organized by the Victorian Popular Fiction Association (VPFA) then a membership form for the association can be downloaded from the website:

If you have any questions about this event, please contact Janice Allan at OR Joanne Ella Parsons at
All VPFA events are hosted at the English Institute, Senate House in London.

Exhibit: UCLA Clark Library "Odd Volumes: Bibliophilia at the Fin de Siècle" (Fall 2013)

Odd Volumes: Bibliophilia at the Fin de Siècle
Fall 2013 Clark Library Exhibit
Ellen Crowell, Guest Curator and Lecturer

A curious bookcase at the back of the Clark Library Reading Room—virtually unopened for over fifty years—contains an almost untouched archive of the publications and proceedings of a private London bibliophilic dining club, The Sette of Odd Volumes. Formed in London in 1878 by prominent bookseller and collector Bernard Quaritch, and in continuous operation from 1878 through the 1940s, the group's name derives from bibliophilic parlance: bound volumes not paired with others in their "set" were "odd," and thus less valuable than when united. This exhibit will open up the Odd Volumes bookcase to the public, showcasing the Clark’s collection of over 1000 rare books, typed and handwritten letters, original artwork, photographs, and other ephemera chronicling the history of this literary and artistic society, founded on a love of book collecting, whose heyday was between 1885 and 1895. By the mid 1880s, the Odd Volumes boasted a distinguished membership of prominent booksellers, bookbinders, illustrators, poets, novelists, artists, entrepreneurs, and publishers—a diverse and at times discordant network of aesthetically-minded gentlemen whose overarching connection to each other was a passion for books. This exhibit offers a fascinating glimpse into intellectual, aesthetic and social interactions of an network comprised of key figures in the cultures of aestheticism, decadence, and early modernism.

In an accompanying lecture, Dr. Ellen Crowell will illuminate how this late-Victorian network and its collective preoccupations dovetail with those of key artists of the long fin-de-siècle.  By enlisting Oscar Wilde, a figure key to Clark Library collections, as a guide through the Odd Volumes bookcase, this lecture will trace intersections between the proceedings of this bibliophile club and Wilde’s aesthetic development from 1885 to 1892 and demonstrate how this stand-alone archive offers scholars new entrance points into the history of fin-de-siècle literary, visual, commercial and sexual subcultures.

Ellen Crowell is Associate Professor of English at Saint Louis University. She is the author of Aristocratic Drag: The Dandy in Irish and American Southern Fiction (Edinburgh, 2007). Other work has appeared in Modern Fiction Studies, Eire-Ireland, and BRANCH: Britain, Representation and Nineteenth-Century History. Her current book project, Oscar Wilde’s Body, reconstructs forgotten subcultures of mourning, fandom, and queer self-fashioning to reimagine Wilde’s presence in the literary and cultural landscapes of early modernism.

Monday, September 09, 2013

CFP: Victorian Network Victorian Bodies and Body Parts (11/30/2013)

Deadline: November 30, 2013

Victorian Network is an MLA-indexed online journal devoted to publishing and promoting the best postgraduate work in Victorian Studies.

The ninth issue of Victorian Network, guest edited by Professor Pamela K. Gilbert (University of Florida), is dedicated to a reassessment of the place of the human body in the Victorian literary and cultural imagination. Rapid medical and scientific advances, advancing industrialization and new forms of labour, legal reforms, the rise of comparative ethnology and anthropology, the growth of consumer culture, and the ever changing trends of Victorian fashion are just a few of the many forces that transformed how Victorians thought about the human body and about the relationship between the embodied, or disembodied, self and the object world.

Nineteenth-century configurations of the body have long been of interest to Victorian scholars. However, recent years have seen the field reconfigured by the emergence of a range of exciting new and theoretically sophisticated approaches that harness the insights of the new materialism, thing theory, cultural phenomenology and actor-network theory to explorations of Victorian embodiment, bodies and body parts.

The editorial board are inviting submissions of no more than 7000 words, on any aspect of the theme.  Possible topics include but are by no means limited to the following:
  • embodied experience and the senses
  • the body in stillness and in motion: practices of confinement and mobility
  • consumerism, fashion and the stylized body
  • the body and technology
  • bodies of empire and colonialism
  • bodies and body parts on display: anatomical museums, ethnological shows, hospital ward tours
  • sciences of the body: medicine, biology, ethnology, statistics, etc.
  • bodies, sex and gender
  • health and illness
  • affective bodies and embodied emotions
  • labour power and the body as property
  • the poetics and aesthetics of the human body
  • human and animal bodies before and after Darwin

All submissions should conform to MHRA style conventions and the in-housesubmission guidelines.
 Deadline for submissions: November 30, 2013. Contact: