Legacies of Romanticism in the Tides of Modernity

deadline for submissions: 
September 23, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
American Comparative Literature Association
contact email: 

The Legacies of Romanticism in the Tides of Modernity


American Comparative Literature Association Conference

Utrecht, Netherlands, July 6-9, 2017.


 In the course of more than two centuries following its inception, the critical paradigm of early German Romanticism has evolved from the ground of idealistic philosophy and subject agency to take into its purview the autonomy of language with its attendant erasure of the authority/author; the dismantling of irrefutable truths (via Nietzsche, who tailored early German Romanticism’s critical legacy after his own fashion becoming a reference point for much poststructuralism); the move toward fragmented subjectivities and the self-nature dialectic that prefigure debates on the human/posthuman; and the invention of a new conception of literature (“Poesie”). One question thus becomes: how have the concerns and insights of Romanticism persisted and mutated in the cultural initiatives that became the Modern?

We invite presentations that articulate the legacies of early German Romanticism as they persist in Modernism/Modernity. Such relations might include how Modernism has capitalized on epistemological insights raised by Romanticism; how Romantic conceptions of language and the literary have shaped poetic and narrative practice; how Romantic thinking about time, memory, space, history, nationality/transnationality, boundaries and limits has conditioned modern reflection on these concepts. We are open to presentations that address literary, philosophical, pictorial, and theoretical texts as well as film.

This meeting is organized as a seminar composed of roughly 12 participants meeting over three days. A priority of this seminar is to orchestrate a conversation among the participants rather than arrange for the reading of a series of formal papers. To that end we will call on seminar participants to pre-circulate short papers articulating their engagements with the seminar’s central questions and thereby devote maximum time to discussion.

Those interested must apply to this seminar through the ACLA website (http://www.acla.org/annual-meeting) during the enrollment period September 1-23, 2016.

Please direct questions and inquires to either Azade Seyhan (aseyhan@brynmawr) or Mark Freed (mark.freed@cmich.edu).