Consumption and Culture in English Literature before 1800

deadline for submissions: 
April 5, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
English I: English Literature Before 1800 -- MMLA 2018
contact email: 

Building off the 2018 MMLA themes of consumption and culture, this section invites papers that explore representations of food, its production, and/or its consumption in works of English literature before 1800. Possible questions to explore might include the following:

  • What is the relation between consumption and humoralism? Does food offer another approach to early modern materialism?
  • What are the connections between eating, food, and class in 18thcentury novels?
  • How do pre-modern or early modern writers use aspects of culinary culture to understand other elements of human society?
  • How does language of hunger and consumption intersect with gender, sexuality, and erotic desire?
  • Does language having to do with the universal categories of food and consumption have an especially trans-historical resonance?
  • How might discourses related to consumption offer a unique understanding of pre-modern subjectivity?
  • What are the links between discourses of consumption, economic production, and colonialism?
  • In what ways do literary discourses related to food and consumption speak to religious concerns in early modern England?

Please email 250-word abstracts with a brief bio to by April 5, 2018.

The 2018 conference is meeting November 15-18 in Kansas City, Missouri. You can learn more about MMLA here: