[UPDATE] The Demonic and the Divine: Religion and the Politics of Grub Street - submit by 30 January 2011.

full name / name of organization: 
Sharon Alker, Department of English, Whitman College
contact email: 

John Richetti has recently commented on the complexity of religion in the work of Defoe. In a comparison of religion in Defoe's Religious Courtship and the Family Instructor he notes, "[r]eligion in…[ Religious Courtship ] is not so much a matter of intense piety and spiritual soul searching as it is a social issue and psychological problem, part of the institutional arrangements for a successful marriage, and not, as in the Family Instructor , a purely spiritual affair" ( The Life of Daniel Defoe 164). This panel wishes to tease out more of these complex and multifaceted uses of religion, piety, and spirituality in Defoe's writing and that of his contemporaries, paying particular attention to moments where spiritual interests intersect with or are subsumed by socio-political ones. Papers are invited that grapple with religion in any of Defoe's works, from his novels to his political writings to his didactic works. We will also consider similar studies of the work of some of Defoe's contemporaries.

Please submit abstracts of 200 pages or less by 30 January 2011 to alkersr@whitman.edu