Literature and Medicine in the Eighteenth Century: NEMLA 2014, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; April 3-6

full name / name of organization: 
Kathleen Alves/CUNY
contact email: 
kalves@qcc.cuny.edu

Literature and Medicine in the Eighteenth Century
The eighteenth century has been described as an era of increasing medicalization. Bodies became the subject of extensive political intervention, from mass inoculations to centralized responses to epidemics. For Michel Foucault, medicalization promoted disciplinary control and surveillance into the fabric of the body. With the expansion of print, lay people took responsibility for managing their health through their own knowledge of physiology and medicine. Self-regimen or preventative medicine, based on Hippocratic and Galenic principles, was contingent on the patient’s knowledge of their own lifestyle and constitution. E.C. Spary writes, “the body is central to the transformations of eighteenth-century medical historiography. Once the unproblematic subject of medical interventions, it has become the site of lived experience, a palimpsest on which medical, political, and personal authority are inscribed, and a key locus for the fashioning of identity, subjectivity, and selfhood.” Therefore, the imbrication of medical language and literary composition provide a useful frame for understanding the articulation of the body as a sign. This panel explores the complex intersections between literature and eighteenth century medical discourse, and considers their relation to our understanding of gender studies, gender politics, science, medicine, and literature.

This panel seeks papers that explore the complex intersections between eighteenth-century literature and medical discourse. How does the imbrication of medical language and literary composition provide a frame for understanding the articulation of the body as a sign? How has medical discourse influenced the fashioning of identity, subjectivity, and selfhood? Please submit 300-400 word abstracts and brief biographical statements to Kathleen Alves at kalves@qcc.cuny.edu by September 30.

cfp categories: 
african-american
american
bibliography_and_history_of_the_book
childrens_literature
classical_studies
cultural_studies_and_historical_approaches
ecocriticism_and_environmental_studies
eighteenth_century
ethnicity_and_national_identity
film_and_television
gender_studies_and_sexuality
general_announcements
graduate_conferences
humanities_computing_and_the_internet
interdisciplinary
international_conferences
journals_and_collections_of_essays
medieval
modernist studies
poetry
popular_culture
postcolonial
professional_topics
religion
renaissance
rhetoric_and_composition
romantic
science_and_culture
theatre
theory
travel_writing
twentieth_century_and_beyond
victorian