[UPDATE] Modernism and Utopia: Convergences in the Arts; 23-24 April 2010

full name / name of organization: 
Nathan Waddell / University of Birmingham


Modernism and Utopia: Convergences in the Arts

Confirmed plenary speakers:

Doug Mao, Johns Hopkins University
Patrick Parrinder, University of Reading
Darko Suvin, McGill University

Proposals are invited for 20-minute conference presentations that consider modernism in relation to utopia and utopianism, in written, visual, aural, and plastic media.

The aim of the conference is to encourage debate between and across disciplines with a focus on the varied historical, cultural, technological, and intellectual settings in which the modernism/utopia nexus might be clarified and explained.

A principal goal of the conference is not just to engage with but to challenge, build on, and extend current work in the new utopian and new modernist studies. Suggested points of departure for these last two critical domains might include, but are by no means limited to, all current and forthcoming volumes of the Ralahine Utopian Studies book series and the latest articles in periodicals such as 'Modernism/Modernity' and 'Utopian Studies'.

The conference organizers will be working towards a publishing outcome for this project: an essay volume based on essays worked up from the best conference papers, as well as specially commissioned articles (for which the organizers have already had talks with a major academic publisher).

Suggestions for topics might include, but are not restricted to, the following:

- modernism and authors/painters of utopias
- sound/music, utopianism, and modernism
- modernist architecture/sculpture and utopia
- utopia, modernism, and modernity
- modernism, science fiction, and utopia
- specific traditions of utopian thought in relation to modernism
- modernism and philosophers of the utopian
- utopianists as modernists/modernists as utopianists
- modernism and utopianism as 'isms'
- ethics in relation to modernism and utopia

The conference will be held in Birmingham, England, April 23rd – 24th 2010, and is being organized by James Barnett, Alice Reeve-Tucker, and Nathan Waddell. Postgraduates are highly encouraged to attend and/or give a paper. The conference website can be found here: www.mod-utopia.bham.ac.uk

For further information or to offer a conference paper please contact Nathan Waddell by email (preferred) or post.




Department of English, College of Arts and Law, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT