CFP: [International] Literature and History

full name / name of organization: 
Paul Sheehan
contact email:


‘Literature and History’
The Second Annual Conference of the Australasian Association for

24-25 July, 2008
Macquarie University
Sydney, Australia

Confirmed keynote speakers:
Professor Terry Castle (Stanford University)
Professor Charles Altieri (University of California, Berkeley)

Debates about the relationship between literature and history have long
haunted literary practice, history and criticism. For some, historicism
can be seen as a form of hermeneutical aggression, for others it provides
the key to the literary representation of psychological and cultural
phenomena. The archive, viewed from these diverging perspectives,
obfuscates or illuminates. Recent flirtations with reading literally have
been equally contentious, shifting the focus away from aesthetics towards
the traces of material culture that clutter narrative space with
forgotten or repressed histories.

Papers are invited that address the troubled, complex relationship
between literature and history, and may include any of the following

• Tensions between theory and history
• Resistance to history / anti-historicism
• Writing and re-membering lives
• Temporality – literary and historical time
• Ficto-historical writing / historical fiction / history and
• Literature and material culture
• The interaction between a work and its contexts
• Political, ethical and / or legal implications of historical
• Reconsidering the literary significance of ‘history from below’
• Literary history and its mediations (gender, class, ethnicity,
• Problems of memory and epistemology in writing history
• Questions of genre, periodisation and dis/continuity
• Reflections on reading history / the history of reading
• Any other issues that concern the relationship between literature
and history

The literary works discussed might be drawn from any period and from any
language (though all papers will need to be presented in English).
Proposals should be 250-300 words in length and sent via email, by 30
April 2008, to:

Conference address:

AAL address:

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Received on Fri Feb 22 2008 - 23:17:24 EST

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