Showing posts with label UK. Show all posts
Showing posts with label UK. Show all posts

Monday, May 13, 2013

PhD studentship in London on C19 Professions and the Press (6/11/2013)

MPhil/PhD Scholarship
Professions and the Press 1820-1900
University of Greenwich -School of Humanities and Social Sciences
(Ref: VCS-HSS-01-13) 

This PhD topic investigates how the specific necessities and practices of publishing impacted on the formation of the professions in the nineteenth century. The PhD addresses questions such as:

  • How was the press used to establish and regulate professional identities?
  • How was the press used by individual professionals to advance their careers, supplement their incomes or assert class and gender positions for themselves and for the groups they represented?
  • Above all, what part did the economic and practical necessities of publishing play in forwarding professional identities and practices?
The research seeks to answer the above by focusing on one pair of professions and their journals, contrasting what were, in the nineteenth century, an established profession with a new profession. Proposed pairings include Architecture and Engineering or Law and Finance.

The successful candidate will receive a £13726 bursary (years 2 and 3 linked to RCUK Doctoral Stipend rate) plus a contribution towards tuition fees of up to the equivalent of the university’s Home/EU rate for the duration of their scholarship, subject to performance. Applicants must hold a First Class or Upper Second Class Honours Bachelor’s or Master’s degree (UK or UK equivalent) in a relevant discipline. Applications are sought by the indicated closing date for starting in September 2013.

For further information please contact the supervisor: Professor Andrew King, [NB the advert gives my work phone number but I've given up my office to special needs students for the next two weeks so best email.]

For additional information about the studentship and links to the application form please go to:  

The application form should be completed and returned to: and include: a comprehensive CV and a one page covering letter explaining your interest in the project and how it relates to past experience and present motivations. Attachments should be in PDF or Word format.

The closing date for applications is 12.00 UTC on Tuesday 11 June 2013.

CFP: Wilkie Collins Research Day (5/31/2013;11/9/2013)

Victorian Popular Fiction Association
Research Day – 9th November 2013
Wilkie Collins: New Directions and Readings

The VPFA is pleased to announce a Study Day devoted to the work of Wilkie Collins. Confirmed speakers include Tara MacDonald (University of Amsterdam), Anne-Marie Beller (Loughborough University), Tabitha Sparks (McGill University) and Joanne Ella Parsons (Bath Spa University). In addition to these speakers, we would like to solicit three further papers of 20 minutes duration on any aspect of Collins’s novels, short stories, and plays. Please send a 250 word abstract to Janice Allan ( and Joanne Parsons ( by the 31st May 2013.

All VPFA events are hosted at the English Institute, Senate House in London.


Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Registration Open: RSVP Annual Conference "Tradition and the New" (7/12-13/2013)

"Tradition and the New"
The 45th Annual Conference 
of the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals
12-13 July, 2013
University of Salford
Manchester, UK

The Research Society for Victorian Periodicals will hold its annual conference at the University of Salford, in Manchester, on 12-13 July 2013. This year's theme is 'tradition and the new' in the nineteenth-century press. Registration is now open via Salford University's online shop here. The 2013 RSVP Programme Committee have now released a draft programme. The draft and further details about this exciting conference can be found on the conference website:

Follow the discussion on Twitter: hashtag #rs4vp13.

Registration Open: Victorian Tactile Imagination (6/1/2013; 7/19-20/2013)

The Victorian Tactile Imagination Conference
Birkbeck, University of London
19-20 July 2013

Registration for the conference is now open. Please register before 1 June 2013 at:

Keynote Speakers:
  • William Cohen (Maryland): 'Arborealities: The Tactile Ecology of Hardy's Woodlanders'
  • Gillian Beer (Cambridge): 'Dream Touch'
  • Constance Classen (author of The Deepest Sense: A Cultural History of Touch): 'Victorian Intimacies: Love, Death, and the British Museum'
  • Hilary Fraser (Birkbeck): 'Touching Pictures: Victorian Art Writing and the Tactile Imagination'

Roundtable on Touching Nineteenth-Century Material Culture:
  • Elizabeth Edwards (De Montfort): 'Mounting Photographs and the Tactile Archive'
  • Sonia Solicari (Principal Curator, Guildhall Art Gallery): 'The Doorknocker in Victorian Art and Culture'
  • Nicola Bown (Birkbeck): 'Love Objects'

This conference will explore the various ways in which the Victorians conceptualized, represented, experienced, performed and problematized touch. What does touch signal in nineteenth-century art and literature, and how is it variously coded? How are hands and skin - tactile appendages and surfaces - imagined in the period? By investigating the Victorian imaginary of touch, the conference will address and reappraise some of the key concepts and debates which have shaped Victorian studies in the past twenty years - in particular the emphasis on visuality as the dominant mode via which subjectivities and power were effected in the period: not least Jonathan Crary's influential thesis that the nineteenth century witnessed a pervasive 'separation of the senses.' The conference aims to investigate instead the workings of a more textured vision and reanimate the interoperability of sight and touch in nineteenth-century culture.

The conference will also extend and build upon recent critical studies that have begun to explore nineteenth-century tactility in relation to material culture, bodies, and the emotions. By focusing closely on touch and tactility, it aims to establish whether and in what terms we might talk about a Victorian 'aesthetics of touch,' and to explore how touch constructs and disrupts, for example, class and gender identities. It will also consider the historical trajectories of touch, asking, for example, in what ways does touch mark or blur the divide between Victorianism and Modernism?

For more information, please visit the website at:

Monday, April 29, 2013

Workshop: Locating Women in Victorian Print Culture (6/13/2013)

Locating women in Victorian print culture
Thursday 13 June 2013
R1.15 Ramphal Building, University of Warwick

A workshop co-organised by the University of Warwick’s Institute of Advanced Study and the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies.

Laurel Brake (Birkbeck, University of London) 
Beth Palmer (University of Surrey)
Margaret Beetham (University of Salford)
Tara Puri (University of Warwick) 

The last few decades have seen an increasing interest in nineteenth century print culture. This workshop aims to build on this recent scholarship by bringing together academics working on different aspects of Victorian periodicals. The papers will focus both on questions of gender and genre, as well as the methodological challenges presented by these capacious and diverse entities. Beginning with inquiries as basic as what constitutes a periodical, the papers will explore questions like: What is women’s role as editors, contributors, and readers of these periodicals? How does the form and the multi-generic nature of the periodical shape its reading? And where do women’s magazines fit into women’s literary history?

  • 11.00 - 11.30:  Welcome and coffee
  • 11.30 - 13.30:  Laurel Brake, Young Oxford in Print 1869-1889. The (Humphry) Wards and the (Walter) Paters. Beth Palmer, Locating the editor in women's literary magazines 
  • 13.30 - 14.30:  Lunch
  • 14.30 - 16.30:  Margaret Beetham, Sable Sisters, Missionary Wives, and Bad Mothers: Domestic Femininity in Victorian Religious Periodicals. Tara Puri, Thinking about materiality in women’s magazines 
  • 16.30 - 17.00:  Closing remarks
  • 17.00:  Wine reception 

Please note:
Attendance at the workshop is free and lunch is provided. However, numbers are limited so please email Tara Puri to register:

Two travel bursaries are available for postgraduate students to attend the workshop. If you would like to be considered, please submit a short outline of your research.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

CFP: “Contact and Connection”: Travel and Mobility Symposium (5/1/2013; 6/27/2013)

Thursday 27th June 2013, University of Warwick

Keynote speakers:
Dr Cathy Waters (University of Kent)
Professor Tim Youngs (Nottingham Trent University)

Submissions are invited for the first annual symposium of the University of Warwick Travel and Mobility Studies Research Network, on the theme of “Contact and Connection”.

The symposium aims to address the various connections and forms of contact produced through different forms and representations of travel practice. How does travel connect cultures? What new cultural formations are produced through the process of travel? What are the implications of connection across local, national and global mobile networks? How does travel connect people to the spaces around them and through which they move? What new theoretical connections are produced through the intersections of travel and mobility theory with other disciplines?

Proposals are welcome from researchers working across the arts, humanities and social sciences, including such subjects as travel literature (fiction and non-fiction), the visual arts, tourism studies, migration and migrants, commodity circulation, transnationality, philosophies of travel, and mobility theory in any historical period and within any global context.

Topics might include:

  • Cultural connections forged through travel
  • Contact zones in colonial contexts
  • Intra-national and local networks of mobility
  • Global networks and transnationality
  • Connections within and between literature, visual arts, and other cultural modes
  • Circulation of people, commodities, texts
  • Connections between people and places
  • Theoretical connections within travel studies
  • Touristic connections with spaces of travel
  • Meeting points and places of contact

Deadline extended: Please send abstracts of 300 words for a 15-20 minute paper or expressions of interest by 1st May 2013.

Email: Dr Charlotte Mathieson or Dr Tara Puri

For more information on the Network visit

Sunday, April 14, 2013

CFP: in:flux 1845-1945: A Century in Motion (5/17/2013; 6/27/2013)

1845-1945: A Century in Motion
University of Birmingham, 27th June 2013
Keynote speaker – Dr Matthew Rubery, Queen Mary University of London
Interdisciplinary postgraduate conference – call for papers

How did the rapid period of industrialisation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries help to shape societies and lifestyles in the West? What types of social changes, movements and developments characterise this time period? This interdisciplinary postgraduate conference, in affiliation with the Centre for the Study of Cultural Modernity and hosted by the College of Arts and Law, seeks to explore the various ways in which this century was one of ‘motion’, in every sense of the word. The conference title seeks to encapsulate both the uncertainty and upheaval of this period as well as the physical and cultural movements that occurred at this time. We invite papers addressing these themes from postgraduate researchers and early-career academics working on this period from a variety of backgrounds.

Topics could include, but are not limited to:

Cultural or social movements

  • political movements
  • the Women’s Movement
  • arts movements (musical, artistic, literary)
  • religious and philosophical
  • popular cultural trends (food, fashion, advertising)

Physical movements

  • mass movement of people (mobilisation of soldiers, migration from towns to cities)
  • transatlantic and inter-continental travel (including emigration and immigration)
  • leisure and tourism
  • transport
  • changing landscapes

Development and progress

  • media (cinema, audio technology and radio, print media)
  • scientific and medical advances
  • technology
  • economic growth and/or recession
  • development of nationhood

These headings are suggestions only; we welcome proposals exploring crossovers between these topics, or addressing them from interdisciplinary perspectives. Abstracts of 250-300 words for 20 minute papers along with a short biographical note of no more than 50 words should be sent to by the 17th May 2013. We welcome any questions that you may have; please do not hesitate to contact us at the above address.
For more information about the Centre for the Study of Cultural Modernity please visit their website:

Twitter: @pgculturalmod          

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Print & Popular Culture Seminar (5/7/2013)

Victorian Print and Popular Culture Seminar Series
(Research Centre for Literature and Cultural History)
Liverpool John Moores University

Tuesday 7th May 2013
Dr Annemarie McAllister (UCLAN) The Temperance and the Working Class Project: public engagement with academic research on popular culture

The teetotal temperance movement, from its beginnings in Preston in 1832, swept the country and numbered millions of members by its high point just before the first world war.  It remained fairly strong in its heartland of the North West for much of the twentieth century, and yet had almost disappeared from popular knowledge by 2012, 180 years after the signing of the first total abstinence pledge.  This talk will explore how the 'Temperance and the Working Class' Project has managed to raise the profile of temperance history locally and nationally, an undertaking involving oral history, performances and re-creations, three 'Demon Drink' exhibitions, local and family history events, guided tours, and of course much traditional and social media work.  From mounting a pop-up exhibition with volunteers in a local shopping centre and tweeting about it, to singing temperance ballads in costume, the life of an academic takes some strange turns when in receipt of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant.  The story of the Project reveals how nineteeth- and twentieth- century cultural history can provide a focus for the social creation of, recapture of, and debate about community identity.  Engagement with historical ideas and artefacts can also relate to current social concerns and influence individual life choices.  For more information please see and

To be held in room 112, Dean Walters Building, St James Road, Liverpool, 5:30pm to 6:45pm. Refreshments to be provided.

For more information contact: Dr Clare Horrocks (Senior Lecturer in Media, Culture and Communication)

Monday, March 25, 2013

Spring Lecture Series: University of Southampton (4/2013-5/2013)

University of Southampton
Centre for 19th-Century Research
Spring Lecture Series

All lectures are free and open to all. Lectures will be held in Building 65, Room 1097, Avenue Campus, University of Southampton:

Weds 17 April, 4-6pm:  Prof. Michael Wheeler (University of Southampton) Redefining Liberalism in the 19th century (65/1097)

Weds 1 May, 3-5pm: Prof. David Mayer (University of Manchester) "Trouble at t'Millpond: an early film and the late Victorian stage. (65/1097)

Weds 8 May, 4-6pm: Dr. Andrew Mangham (University of Reading) 'Murder Will Out!': Forensic Medicine, Popular Literature and Royal Scandal in the Early Nineteenth Century. (65/1097)

Friday, March 22, 2013

CFP: Victorian Body Parts (5/31/2013; 9/14/2013)

St Bartholomew’s Pathology Museum, Clerkenwell, Saturday 14th September 2013

Keynote Speakers: Dr Katharina Boehm (Universität Regensburg), Dr Kate Hill (Lincoln) and Dr Tiffany Watt-Smith (QMUL)

Mr Wegg, if you was brought here loose in a bag to be articulated, I'd name your smallest bones blindfold equally with your largest, as fast as I could pick 'em out, and I'd sort 'em all, and sort your wertebrae, in a manner that would equally surprise and charm you.” (Charles Dickens, Our Mutual Friend, 1865)

Why were the Victorians so interested in atomizing the body? What was causing nineteenth-century bodies to come apart at the seams? From articulated bones to beating hearts, from wooden legs to hair bracelets, from death masks to glass eyes, the Victorian body was chattering with its own discorporation. 

The results of this fragmentation are successors to the recent scholarly work on material culture in examining the atomisation of the body as a symptom of being surrounded by the commodities generated by the nineteenth century. From objects under glass domes to pieces of the body in glass cases (authentic specimens of which fill St Bartholomew’s Pathology Museum), commodification and dissection have much in common.

This conference thus seeks to explore, develop and enrich perspectives on the numerous and varied ways in which the Victorians approached their anatomy, bringing together postgraduate, early career and established researchers to consider why body parts provided such an urgent and stimulating focus within the nineteenth-century cultural imagination.

Possible topics could include, but are by no means limited to:

  • Mementos of the body and the culture of mourning
  • Disability and the “substitution” of the body part
  • Dress and the exaggeration of, or emphasis on, elements of the body
  • Darwin and bodily means of expression in science
  • The “queering” of the body part
  • Measuring the body: deviation from the standards of Western patriarchy
  • Preserving the body: collecting and museum cultures

Proposals of up to 300 words should be sent to by Friday 31st May 2013.

Twitter: @victbodyparts

Thursday, March 07, 2013

CFP: The Weird: Fugitive Fictions/Hybrid Genre (8/1/2013; 11/8/2013)

The Weird: Fugitive Fictions/Hybrid Genre

A one day research conference in association with the Centre for Contemporary Literature, Birkbeck, exploring the weird literary tradition and the many facets of weird writing.

Keynotes: S.T. Joshi / Professor Roger Luckhurst / more TBA

Friday 8th November 2013 / Senate House, London

Until recently weird fiction, if acknowledged at all, was usually considered to be a marginal mode in the already lowly Gothic tradition - less a genre than a particular affect. In the last ten years, however, it has come to be regarded as a separate and distinct form with an increasingly important role to play in the theory of popular genre. The debate has broadened its scope to perceive and explore connections with discourses, literary traditions and cultures not previously associated with the Weird. This call for papers invites contributions that engage with weird fiction in its various aspects, including, but not limited to, the following topics and authors:

  • The weird cosmic horror tradition of H.P. Lovecraft and his ‘Weird Tales’ contemporaries
  • The recent New Weird advocated by China Miéville and others
  • The evolution of the Weird
  • The global Weird - weird fiction in translation
  • Genre theory and fugitive forms
  • Modernism and the Weird
  • Weird Philosophy and Weird Theory

We would be delighted to receive abstracts on any aspect of weird fiction from the long nineteenth century, including, but certainly not limited to, the weird fiction of Poe, Stevenson, Kipling, Conan Doyle, Algernon Blackwood, Arthur Machen, Lord Dunsany, M.R. James, William Hope Hodgson and Ambrose Bierce.

Please send 250 word abstracts for 20 minute papers, together with a brief biography, to by 1st August 2013.

Thursday 7th November 2013 (evening event): weird fiction reading (details TBC)

Follow ‘The Weird’ on Twitter: @WeirdConference

This conference is supported by the Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Literature, Birkbeck School of Arts, and the Institute of English Studies, University of London.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

CFP: Social Fabrics (5/15/2013; 9/14/2013)

Social Fabrics: Utopias and Dystopias in relation to the Work of William Morris and H. G. Wells

A Conference Jointly Run by the H.G. Wells Society and the William Morris Society
Saturday 14 September 2013, The Coach House, Kelmscott House, London, UK

We are delighted to invite papers on the full range of topics indicated by the title of the conference. Please email abstracts of 500 words to Emelyne Godfrey, Helen Elletson,, Patrick Parrinder,, and Sylvia Hardy

Deadline for Paper Proposals: 15 May 2013

Location of Conference:
Kelmscott House,
26 Upper Mall,
Hammersmith, W6 9TA

Nearest tube stations: Ravenscourt Park (10-minute walk) and Hammersmith (15-minute walk).

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

CFP: Uneasy Neighbours?: Rural-Urban Relationships in the Nineteenth Century (4/2/2013; 9/20/2013)

University of Southampton
Centre for 19th-Century Research

Uneasy Neighbours?: Rural-Urban Relationships in the Nineteenth Century

An International Interdisciplinary Conference
20 September 2013

Keynote Speaker: Keith D.M. Snell,
Professor of Rural and Cultural History, University of Leicester

The relationship between urban and rural communities in the nineteenth century was increasingly strained by the unprecedented rate and scale of social, industrial, technological and economic change worldwide. Cities demanded ever more from agriculture, while rural populations decreased; country life and work were changed by mechanisation and industrialisation, while newcomers to the cities had to adjust to alien ways of living and conditions of employment; poverty was commonplace in both the countryside and the cities, while the newly wealthy became landowners and urban leaders. This 1-day interdisciplinary conference aims to consider evidence of the tensions, anxieties and experiences resulting from the changing dynamic between rural and urban life, to examine how this shaped the perceptions of the country and the city, and
to explore how these are articulated in different global contexts.

Suggested topics might include (but are not limited to): The rival attractions of rural and urban living; the rise of the suburb; changing ideals of national identity; representations of rural/urban
life and work in art, literature and science; women’s lives and work in the country and city; rural and urban health/wealth/poverty; utopianism; urban/rural perspectives in the contemporary press; the role and influence of religion; landowners, businessmen and entrepreneurs; the lives of children; philanthropy; the greening of the city (garden cities); industrialisation of the countryside. Abstracts (200 words) for proposed 20 minute papers to be submitted by e-mail to and by 2 April 2013.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Registration open: Beyond the Garden Party: Rethinking Edwardian Culture (4/12-13/2013)

Beyond the Garden Party: Rethinking Edwardian Culture
University of Durham & University of York
12th – 13th April 2013

Registration now open!

"It must have seemed like a long garden party on a golden afternoon – to those who were inside the garden. But a great deal that was important was going on outside the garden: it was out there that the twentieth-century world was being made. Nostalgia is a pleasing emotion, but it is also a simplifying one; to think of Edwardian England as a peaceful, opulent world before the flood is to misread the age and to misunderstand the changes that were dramatized by the First World War" (Samuel Hynes, The Edwardian Turn of Mind).

More than forty years since Samuel Hynes wrote these words, many accounts and representations of Edwardian England still invoke the image of the garden party. Building on recent critical reappraisals, such as The Edwardian Sense (Yale 2010), and coinciding with the major Edwardian exhibition at the Yale Center for British Art, this interdisciplinary conference seeks to examine this notion, and to explore the alternatives. Was there such a thing as a distinct Edwardian culture; if so, what were the forces behind it?

This two-day conference will be held at the University of Durham (Friday 12th April) and the University of York (Saturday 13th April), and features a series of papers and panel discussions on subjects ranging from railway posters to chivalric costumes, censorship to science fiction, and spiritualism to neo-Edwardian films. Our confirmed keynote speakers are Dr. Ysanne Holt (Northumbria) and Dr. Simon J. James (Durham).

The total cost of the conference, including lunch on both days and a wine reception to close, is £10.

To register, please visit the online store.
Alternatively, you can follow the links on
For further information please email

‘Beyond the Garden Party: Rethinking Edwardian Culture’ is generously supported by the Centre for Modern Studies and the Humanities Research Centre (University of York), and Event Durham (University of Durham).

Thursday, February 21, 2013

North West Periodicals Research Workshop (3/8/2013)

North West Periodicals Research Workshop
University of Central Lancashire library
Fri, 8 March, 1pm

The programme includes 2 short talks on Victorian periodicals:

  • Visual culture and mechanical objectivity in 19th-century engineering periodicals – Dr Jonathan Westaway, UCLAN
  • The hidden world of water drinkers: What we have learnt from temperance periodicals – Dr Annemarie Mcallister, UCLAN

There will be an opportunity to browse UCLAN’s special collections of periodicals, including Victorian engineering and astronomy journals and the UK’s largest collection of temperance periodicals.

For further details, go to:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

CFP: Social Fabrics HG Wells and William Morris Conference (5/15/2013; 9/14/2013)

A Conference Jointly Run by the H.G. Wells Society and the William Morris Society

Saturday 14 September 2013, The Coach House, Kelmscott House, London, UK

We are delighted to invite papers on the full range of topics indicated by the title of the conference.

Please email abstracts of 500 words to 
Emelyne Godfrey,,
Patrick Parrinder, 
and Sylvia Hardy

Deadline for Paper Proposals: 15 May 2013

Location of Conference:
Kelmscott House, 26 Upper Mall, Hammersmith, W6 9TA
Nearest tube stations: Ravenscourt Park (10-minute walk) and Hammersmith (15-minute walk).

Monday, February 04, 2013

Registration open: Victorian Comedy Conference (4/27/2013)

Registration is now open for a one day conference to be held at University College London on Saturday, 27 April 2013. The conference will consist of a number of papers from experts of various aspects of Victorian Comedy. There will in addition be a roundtable chaired by Dr Jonathan Wild (Edinburgh) and Dr Jane Darcy (UCL) on approaches to teaching Victorian comedy.

The speakers are:

  • Professor Michael Slater (University of London) on Punch serials
  • Dr Carolyn Oulton (Christchurch, Canterbury) on Jerome K Jerome
  • Dr Ann Featherstone (Manchester) on Comedy in Victorian Circuses
  • Dr Oliver Double (Kent) on Little Tich
  • Professor Peter Swaab (UCL) on Edward Lear
  • Dr Jonathan Wild (Edinburgh) on Masculine Middle-Brow Literature
  • Dr Louise Lee (Roehampton) on Darwin’s Humour
The event is free of charge, thank to generous funding from the UCL Arts and Humanities Faculty. It will include refreshments, lunch and a wine reception.

Places are limited. Please contact Dr Jane Darcy to register or to make an enquiry:

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Registration open: Queer London Conference (3/23/2013)

Queer London Conference
Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies
University of Westminster
Saturday 23rd March 2013

Keynote Speaker:
Dr. Matt Cook (Birkbeck College, University of London)


This one-day conference is dedicated to a consideration of London and its role in creating, housing, reflecting and facilitating queer life. It will bring together scholars from a variety of different disciplines and backgrounds to examine representations of queer London and how London itself represents queers.

That London is a focus and centre for queer life and culture can be seen on its stages; in its bar and club scenes; in its film festivals and its representations in film; in its performance art; in its political life; in its gyms; in its history; in its book groups and book shops; and in its representations in the contemporary queer fiction of writers like Alan Hollinghurst and Sarah Waters. That London is a hub and an axis goes without saying. What the ‘Queer London’ conference offers is an opportunity for further analysis and investigation of these representations/representational platforms and consideration of the socio-cultural role that London plays in queer life.

The conference focuses on the period 1885 to the present and includes papers on topics as diverse as 1920s lesbian London; modes of queer activism; the art and photography of Francis Bacon; London’s drag scenes; Alan Hollingshurst’s queer London; queer Soho; and London’s queer sex work.

The conference programme will shortly be posted here –

The conference will be from 10.30am until 7pm and will be held in the University of Westminster’s building at 309 Regent Street.

The conference will be FREE to attend but places are limited. In order to reserve a place, please, including your name, contact details and affiliation.

If you have any questions, please get in touch with Dr. Simon Avery ( and Dr. Katherine M. Graham (

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Reminder: On Liberties: Victorian Liberals and their Legacies (2/27/2013; 7/3-5/2013)

We are delighted to confirm the keynote speakers for On Liberties as Professor Regenia Gagnier (Exeter), Professor Michael Wheeler (Southampton), and the Right Hon. Sir Alan Beith MP. The deadline for proposals of between 205-300 words is Wednesday 27th February 2013, and we would encourage all scholars with a perspective on Victorian or contemporary liberalism (or liberties...) to submit. 

Call for Papers
On Liberties: Victorian Liberals and their Legacies
Gladstone’s Library, 3rd-5th July 2013

Keynote speakers
Professor Regenia Gagnier (Exeter)
Professor Michael Wheeler (Southampton)
Right Hon. Sir Alan Beith

What did it mean to be liberal, or even ‘a’ liberal in the Victorian period? Lord Rosebery said he called himself a liberal because he wanted to be associated with ‘the best men in the best work’; but this rather Arnoldian ideal of ‘the liberal’ wasn’t even shared by Arnold himself, who qualified his own position by calling himself a liberal, but a liberal ‘tempered by experience, reflection and renouncement.’ The nineteenth-century may have seen the publication of one of political liberalism’s ur-texts in John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty, and the founding of the modern Liberal party, but the Victorian idea of the ‘liberal’ was always wider, more conflicted, more capacious, more difficult. Religious liberals, for example, were re-defining the fundamentals of belief; writers and poets used a devotion to ‘liberty’ to support various radical causes at home and abroad; some like Swinburne were rendering a devotion to liberty and an avowed sexual libertinism uneasily indistinct.

Liberal impulses remain firmly with us. Indeed, it is worth asking why the Victorians still to some extent remain the benchmark against which we measure our own liberation, our own modernity; when we look to see how far we’ve come (or not), and what liberties we’ve secured (or not), it is to the nineteenth-century that we frequently look - often to the Victorians’ disadvantage. Or, conversely, we might ask whether we perhaps ‘take liberties’ with the Victorians when trying to re-positioning them against this myth - are we simply re-writing, revising and re-fashioning them in our own ‘liberal’ image?    

Hosted at Gladstone’s Library on 3rd-5th July 2013, and part of Gladstone’s Library’s broader ‘Re:defining liberalism’ project over 2013, this two day conference (presented by Gladstone’s Library in association with the Gladstone Centre at the University of Liverpool) intends to explore the various implications of the idea of the ‘liberal’ in the Victorian period, but also its multifarious legacies: its legacies for modern politics, for the ways we conceptualize the Victorian period today, and most fundamentally for our notions of broader categories and concepts we still associate with ‘the liberal’ and with liberalism: knowledge, licence, education, and human freedom.     

Papers may consider:

  • sexual liberation in the Victorian period
  • religious and theological liberalism, then and now
  • Literary liberalism – the political purposes of contemporary literature
  • Liberalism with a big ‘L’, the Liberal Party and its politicians
  •  ‘Victorian values’ in political discourse today
  • The modern Liberal Democrats and nineteenth-century ideas of liberalism
  • liberal enactments: what does it mean to be liberal today?
  • John Stuart Mill
  • Campaigns for ‘liberty’ abroad in the Victorian period
  • The figure of the libertine in the Victorian period
  • Limited liberalism – problems of liberal representation and subjectivity

Please send proposals of between 250-300 words to Dr. Matthew Bradley ( or Dr. Louisa Yates (, by Wednesday 27th February 2013. Completed papers should be approximately 20 minutes in length.  

CFP: Connected Histories of Empire (1/25/2013; 7/15-16/2013)

Connected Histories of Empire Conference – Second Call for Papers
Centre for the Study of Colonial & Postcolonial Societies, 
University of Bristol, 15-16 July 2013

Please note the closing date for proposals is 25 January 2013

Over the last two decades, scholars have begun to characterise the British Empire as a complex patchwork of interacting and dynamic agencies, rather than as a homogenous monolith. As a result, the traditional spatial framework based on a stable division between the metropole and the periphery seems increasingly outmoded. Instead, historians, literary critics, scholars of globalisation, and philosophers have been writing about the webs, networks, and circuits in which people, objects, and ideas moved. This conference will interrogate the idea of an empire of connections, considering the possibilities opened up by thinking in terms of global interaction, as well as the challenges of incorporating the myriad interconnections of empire into coherent historical narratives.

The conference is the culmination of a year of events at the University of Bristol which have focused particularly on the memorialisation and commemoration of the British Empire. As scholars have begun to uncover the intricately woven interconnections of empire, a central concern of the conference will be to consider how this might influence how empire has been, and is, remembered and memorialised in Britain and elsewhere.

We would like to invite proposals for papers and panels that speak to the following broad themes:

  • The commemoration and memorialisation of different imperial sites, events and phenomena
  • Links between imperial port-cities/global cities
  • Flows of people, goods (physical and cultural), and cash
  • The movement, preservation and display of imperial artefacts and archives
  • Imperial networks and imperial careering
  • Imperial audiences and public spheres
  • The links between global history and imperial history
We would like to encourage broad discussion of connections and comparisons between different modern empires: proposals need not be restricted to the British empire.

We welcome papers from a range of academic disciplines.

To apply please send a 250 word abstract to the organisers at

Conference organisers:
  • History: Ms Emily Baughan, Prof Robert Bickers, Prof Peter Coates, Prof Tim Cole, Dr Simon Potter, Dr Jonathan Saha, Dr Rob Skinner
  • Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies: Dr Matthew Brown, Dr Joanna Crow
  • English: Dr John Lee
  • Archaeology & Anthropology: Prof Mark Hortonl networks and imperial careering