full name / name of organization:
March 17th & 18th 2006
Institute of English Studies, University of Paris III (Sorbonne Nouvelle)
Rue de l¹Ecole de Médecine, Paris 75006, France.
³Frames & framing²
SAIT specialises in intertextual and intersemiotic studies, concentrating on
the interaction and interconnections between different forms of art. The
theme of its winter conference for 2006 is ³frames and framing,² taken both
in their literal and metaphorical acceptions.
The word ³frame,² in the 16th Century, refered to the internal structure of
an object, such as the frame of a barn or the ingredients of a potion, or
even to the organisation of language, as in Samuel Daniel¹s ³all verse is
but a frame of words.² From internal, mechanical structures to the modern
meaning of enclosing a given space, frames foreground the question of
outsideness and insideness, of objects and their representations, and invite
us to look into the making and the putting together of works of art.
Today the word ³frame² refers to the visible and often ornamental limit
between an inner and an outer space, but it is also what defines and creates
this very limit, what constrains an art which sometimes seek to escape, and
flow beyond the boundaries that seek to contain it. One can think for
instance of narratives that chafe against glib effects of circularity (in
which the ending of the book neatly refers back to the incipit), or musical
effects of circularity and repetition (coda, leitmotive etc.). It may be
worthwhile also to look into the blurring of boundaries, for example between
pictorial space and represented space: in Henry James¹s The Ambassadors,
Strether¹s vision transforms a French rural landscape into a Lambinet
painting; framed by the ³oblong gilt frame² that had encircled the Lambinet
when he had seen it, years before, in the ³maroon-coloured, sky-lighted
inner shrine² at a Boston dealer¹s.
In texts there are internal spaces cut out by divisions into chapters or
paragraphs, with the narrative sometimes playfully refusing to respect the
separating lines: in Tristram Shandy a sentence can ³flow on² into the next
sentence or the next paragraph, regardless of the apparent boundary
constituted by a full stop or the typographical marker of a chapter heading.
In most paintings the scene sits harmoniously within the enclosing frame, in
more contemporary representations the frame can cut across the human shape,
dividing the body between a visible inner space and an absent outer space
(in brothel scenes painted by Toulouse-Lautrec for instance). Or the human
body overlaps the frame, as in a fresco painted by Tiepolo in which one of
the characters¹s legs seem to hang out over the painted frame on the wall.
More generally, in paintings, films, plays, operas one can analyse the
framing or lack of framing of space and the use of interior, embedded framed
spaces (doors, windows, mirrors...).
We hope these few guidelines will inspire many varied approaches. Please
send your paper outlines before December 15th to Nelly Valtat-Comet
(nelly.valtat_at_wanadoo.fr) or to Catherine Pesso-Miquel
From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List
Full Information at
or write Jennifer Higginbotham: higginbj_at_english.upenn.edu
Received on Mon Oct 17 2005 - 23:52:57 EDT