CFP: [American] Transatlantic Sensations

full name / name of organization: 
Jennifer Phegley
contact email: 

Call for Proposals and Manuscripts for Transatlantic Sensations

Edited by John Barton ( and Jennifer Phegley
Deadline: March 1, 2008

In recent years, nineteenth-century sensationalism has attracted much
attention among scholars of both American and British literature and
culture. Sensation literature, however, has yet to be examined in a
transatlantic context, despite the fact that the genre emerged within a
transnational publication system that shaped its development from the early
1800s to the end of the century. This collection seeks not only to map the
development of the “sensation novel”â€"the nineteenth century’s best-selling
genre on both sides of the Atlanticâ€"but also to account for the emergence
of a new kind of writing that informed a range of genres and was determined
by reciprocal influences that defy traditional conceptions of a one-way
cultural flow from the “old world” to the “new.” We hope that exploring
the transatlantic intersections, commerce, and exchange among multiple
literary traditions will also provide insights into the genre’s persistent
popularity with readers and its consistent rejection (until recently) by
critics and literary historians.

We invite 500-word proposals and completed 25-page essays to be considered
for Transatlantic Sensations, an edited collection that has elicited
interest by a major academic publisher. Papers must present original work
in order to be accepted for publication by the press. Essays may treat any
aspect of sensation literature, as long as they do so in a transatlantic
context or in terms of transatlantic studies. Suggested topics for
analysis include, but are not limited to:

•The transatlantic marketplace for, or readership of, sensation literature
•Comparative studies of popular sensational forms such as newspapers,
magazines, melodramatic theater, popular poetry, Newgate Novels, dime
novels, crime gazettes, criminal biographies, detective fiction, new woman
fiction, adventure fiction, and popular Westerns
•Representations of sex and crime, murder and seduction, mystery and
intrigue, medicine and scientific advances, in any aspect of transatlantic
sensation literature
•Comparative studies of sensational authors such as G.M.W Reynolds, Charles
Dickens, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Harrison Ainsworth, Mary Elizabeth Braddon,
Wilkie Collins, Charles Reade, Ellen Price Wood, William Gilmore Simms,
Eugene Sue, George Lippard, A.J.H. Duganne, Mary Dennison, E.D.E.N.
Southworth, George Thompson, and Ned Buntline
•The role prominent editors, publishers, writers, or writer-editors played
in shaping the transatlantic marketplace for sensation literature
•Technological innovations as represented in sensation literature or that
influenced the development of the genre
•Sensational representations of other nations and people
•Constructions of and appeals to race, class, or gender in transatlantic
•Racism and discrimination in a transatlantic context (e.g., slavery, the
“Black Legend” that traveled across the Atlantic, tales of the Spanish
Inquisition, etc.)
•Historical treatments that trace the development of the genre in England,
Europe, and/or America throughout the century

Please email detailed proposals or completed essays for consideration to
both editors by March 1, 2008. We expect to make decisions by May 2008.
Final drafts must be completed by August 20

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Received on Sun Sep 23 2007 - 21:14:04 EDT