Victorian Orientalism(s) - Ragusa Ibla, 28-29 June 2013

full name / name of organization: 
Centre for the Study of Text and Print Culture (Ghent University) - School of Foreign Languages and Literatures of Ragusa (University of Catania)
contact email:

The ‘Victorian Orientalism(s)’ joint international conference between the Centre for the Study of Text and Print Culture at Ghent University (Belgium) and the School of Foreign Languages and Literatures of Ragusa (University of Catania, Italy) aims to discuss the continuing relevance of Edward Said’s Orientalism (1978) as a paramount attempt to define the latent and manifest traces of the East in Western literature and culture. Starting with the postulate that all Eastern societies are fundamentally different from one another, ‘Victorian Orientalism(s)’ seeks to explore what Sherry Simon (2000) calls ‘aesthetics of cultural pluralism’, i.e. the many ways in which the Victorians envisioned the East. Drawing examples from material elements of Orientalism – religious texts, exotic tales, Imperial expeditions, colonial conquests, and so forth – this conference invites submissions which explore nineteenth-century modes of art (narrative, poetic and visual) which position themselves as instruments of knowledge of the Orient.
‘Victorian Orientalism(s)’ is an interdisciplinary conference, which aims to bring together scholars working in a wide range of research areas to explore in depth the many fields of thought covered by the conference theme and to redefine the task of interpreting the East in the new millennium. Papers should deal with one of the following topics:

• The Pre-Raphaelites and Orientalism;
• Portrayal of Victorian women and oriental society;
• Linguistic exoticism in the Victorian era;
• Japonisme and fin-de-siècle aestheticism;
• Victorian hybridity as the assimilation and adaptation of Oriental practices;
• Magical Orientalism;
• Detective short stories and Orientalism;
• Orientalist Victorian fashion;
• Travel writing and Orientalism;
• Utopia and Orientalism;
• Buddhism and the Victorians.

All abstracts of max. 300 words, along with a brief bio-sketch (max. 60 words), should be sent as Microsoft Word email attachments, at, by 15 April 2013.

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