Ruth Rendell, who has recently died, was one of the most prolific and important female authors of the C20th/21st centuries, achieving many literary awards and honours, plus a Labour peerage. Her literary output, both as Ruth Rendell and Barbara Vine, transcended generic boundaries and conventional assumptions about character, the police procedural novel, class and gender, amongst many of her other concerns.
In 2014 Cardiff University received a considerable donation of Artists' Books from Ron King of the Circle Press, one of the most influential practitioners of the Book Arts. In December of this year, the University's Special Collections and Rare Books (SCOLAR) will be hosting a major international conference to celebrate this bequest. Speakers will include Ron King (Circle Press), Sarah Bodman (University of the West of England), and Chris McCabe (Poetry Library).
Though Victorian interest in the Middle Ages has been well-documented, the particular motivations for that interest deserve fuller attention. This session seeks paper-proposals that will explore how what has often been called the Victorian "cult of the child" informed and complicated nineteenth-century fascination with the medieval period.
The rise of the modern museum was (and remains) a global event that resonates across literary cultures. Germain Bazin termed the nineteenth century the "Museum Age" for the myriad ways the new phenomenon of the public museum redefined the social status of art. This session investigates how this development was received by nineteenth- and twentieth-century Anglophone authors writing during and immediately following the rise of the modern museum.
Creative Nonfiction: Call for Papers–2015
"Make Good Art Out of It": Reaching Into a Violent Past and Reclaiming Your Story
We are calling on writers, artists, dabblers, and scholars to contribute work to an edited collection. The topic deals singularly with domestic violence, but the aim is to contribute nonfiction work that is not only compelling writing, but also stretches and challenges the nonfiction genre.
CFP: Congress 2016—Engaging Communities Comparatively
Knowledge and understandings of shared values are created based on our respect for difference and diversity and our engagement with the communities we live in. A focus on connections between the individual, the local and the global can provoke new ways of thinking.
Even before she won the Nobel Prize in 2013, Alice Munro was the source of much scholarly interest, in Canada and internationally, in part because of her profound sense of her literary predecessors and peers. Her fiction has been read in many ways, but we still need a sharper sense of her affinities with and differences from her contemporaries. She has been frequently cited by other writers as a key influence, but how does the influence work in particular stories? How does the sense of place differ in Margaret Atwood or Lorrie Moore? To what extent does Munro's engagement with metafiction in the 1970s reflect a wider trend, and how do other writers deal with the ethical issues that arise when they use their own lives as material for fiction?
This panel seeks to explore representations of futuristic cities from all periods in American literature, film, and other cultural mediums. In particular, it seeks papers responding to one or more of the following questions: In what ways have American writers and filmmakers envisioned future urban landscapes? In what ways have these visions changed over the course of American history and why? How have urban theorists, critics, and reformers as well as particular ideologies (Christian, technocratic, socialist, libertarian, environmentalist, etc.) shaped them? In what ways do the past and present (or the erasure of the past and/or present) affect their depictions?
The following will be a panel at next year's NeMLA Conference, set to take place between March 17 and March 20 in Hartford, Connecticut.
The goal of this panel will be to discuss the restrictions that current and/or potential computational approaches to media analysis have and/or ought to have in an attempt to delimit the evolving roles of academics in the humanities. Presenters might consider the following topics:
The opening session of La métaphore du labyrinthe, an interdisciplinary seminar organized by Roland Barthes during 1978 and 1979, reached two principal conclusions: first, that despite the apparent chaos always linked to its semantics, the notion of 'labyrinth' actually implies "a factor of intentional and systematic construction"; second, that the labyrinthine structures have essentially a hermeneutic function. The wear and tear of the labyrinth as a metaphoric trope drove Barthes to conclude that maybe the labyrinth is but a "pseudo" metaphor, where the letter is richer than the symbol and thus, the labyrinth would engender narratives rather than images.
Movies about college have been a staple of American cinema since the silent era. Films like Harold Lloyd's The Freshman and Buster Keaton's College engaged popular ideas about the culture of campus life as it evolved throughout the 1920s, while also setting precedents for future cinematic representations of the college experience. Benchmark films of the genre such as The Paper Chase, Animal House, and The Social Network provide insight into the ways that college has been variously imagined as a middle class rite of passage, a landscape of hedonistic fantasy, a microcosm of societal hypocrisy, a repressive system of deindividuation, and a carnivalesque holiday from "real life," to name just a few of the most conspicuous themes.
This seminar seeks to draw on the growing body of work oriented toward the transnational and global turn in American Studies to trace connections between the Indian subcontinent and the United States in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. We invite papers that examine the traffic (of ideas, texts, people, commodities) between India and the U.S. to provide a window into the ways in which India was part of the cultural landscape and imaginary of the U.S. from its inception, and performed important ideological work in domestic conversations such as those surrounding race, nation, religion, gender, and trade.
The reputations of Hartford, Connecticut, residents Harriet Beecher Stowe and Mark Twain overshadow the city's antebellum authors. NeMLA 2016 seems ideally situated for a session to raise the academic appreciation and profile of earlier writers who contributed to Hartford's historical literary legacy, which includes Lydia Sigourney, Ann Plato, abolitionist ministers like Lyman Beecher and Amos G. Beman, and Hartford-born pamphlet writer Maria Stewart. Hartford was also a publishing center with a young Samuel G. Goodrich and later, Lewis Skinner, who printed Rev. James C. Pennington's book about African and African American history; lexicographer-journalist Noah Webster was of West Hartford, and The Charter Oak, was Hartford's anti-slavery newspaper.
The Evidence of Realism
[For the annual meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association at Harvard University, March 17-20 2016]
How do texts--and especially realist texts--and their plots use or complicate the idea of evidence? What sort of evidence do such texts seem to assume readers require in order to encounter the "effect of the real"? And how do contemporaneous ideas of evidence from philosophy, legal theory, or science provide context for the consideration of evidence in literary works?