HISTORICAL FUTURES: new directions in early modern historicism

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CUNY Graduate Center Early Modern Interdisciplinary Group
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17 February 2012 in New York City

We call for papers on how we in English studies do historical work now, in the "sea change" (to borrow Jonathan Gil Harris's description from Untimely Matter in the Time of Shakespeare) the discipline is undergoing amid the decline of New Historicism. The conference will braid concerns broached in two exciting courses going on this year at the GC: one on early cultural memory studies including intersections with memory and trauma theories going on this fall and another on new directions for history play studies including intersections with affect theory slated for the spring. We are hoping to have a streamlined, intimate conference - a few well-tuned student papers to set in dialogue with those of our professional speakers as well as time for response, feedback, and conversation so that graduate student participants leave with useful feedback with which to develop their projects.

Confirmed speakers:

Thomas Fulton, Rutgers University
Historical Milton: Manuscript, Print, and Political Culture in Revolutionary England
Rethinking Historicism: Essays on Early Modern Literature and Culture (ed., with Ann Baynes Coiro)

Molly Murray, Columbia University
Poetics of Conversion: Verse and Change from Donne to Dryden
"Measured Sentences: Forming Literature in the Early Modern Prison," HLQ

John Staines, John Jay College
The Tragic Histories of Mary Queen of Scots, 1560-1690: Rhetoric, Passions, and Political Literature
"The Historicist Tradition in Spenser Studies," Oxford Handbook of Spenser

We welcome abstracts for papers involving these or other related topics:

-new(er) historicism(s)
-old historicism resurgent, reevaluated
-historical formalism
-interventions into historicism by affect, queer, gender, memory, trauma theories
-presentism and anachronism
-cultural materialism, thing theory
-new approaches to the English history play
-'minor,' 'soft,' subversive, experimental, radical history/historiography
-'anachronic' early modern tendencies
-taskscapes, dynamograms, lost worlds, multiple pasts
-historical fiction, historical fictions

Send abstracts of 300-400 words to emig.conference@gmail.com. Abstracts will be accepted on a rolling basis until Friday January 20th. Papers from disciplines other than English and those experimental or innovative in form are especially welcome.


PhD Program in English
Renaissance Studies Certificate Program
Doctoral Students' Council