Mapping Exception in Early Modern England 20-21/11/09

full name / name of organization: 
CREA / University of Paris 10 at Nanterre
contact email: 

Deadline for CFP: 30 June 2009

As part of its series of meetings on "Early Modern Cartography of Difference", the CREA research group is organising a two-day conference on the politics of exception in the Elizabethan era (broadly interpreted) on 20th-21st November 2009, hosted by the University of Paris Ouest – La Defense.

This conference follows up on a previous gathering in 2006 where we traced ways in which a number of forms of otherness (the deviant, the uncanny…) were negotiated or enacted through language and texts.

While very much connected to these issues, the notion of exception calls for a shift of focus to cases where difference occurs and is read against a background of variously self-conscious, explicit norms. It may indeed be provided for or pre-empted in the very rationale of such norms. The notion obviously cuts across a very wide range of discourses and social uses, both in terms of Early Modern categories and modern academic disciplines (law, literature, history of science…) and transdisciplinary approaches are strongly encouraged. Exception can be usefully approached through such cognate notions as monstrousness, rarity, the exotic or cases of jurisprudence but whichever the perspective adopted, papers should, as much as possible, attend to the social uses of the concept(s) chosen in the Early Modern era and/or their syntactic incorporation. Whilst literary approaches will most likely form the core of the conference, alternate angles include, but are not limited to: natural history, history of collecting, history of law, social history, lexicography…

Proposals (about half-a-page long) should be submitted by 30th June 2009 to François Mallet and Yan Brailowsky: