UPDATE: Nineteenth-Century Literature and the Cultural Moment (grad) (11/15/05; 3/31/06-4/1/06)

full name / name of organization: 
Celeste Pottier
contact email: 

The conference website for the University of South Carolina's Nineteenth-Century Graduate Literature Conference, "Nineteenth-Century Literature and the Cultural Moment," is now online at http://www.cas.sc.edu/engl/19thcenturyconference/index.html.

A scholarly press has expressed interest in publishing a volume of essays from the conference. We anticipate choosing 14 to 16 essays for inclusion in this collection.


Nineteenth-Century Literature and the Cultural Moment
Graduate Student Literature Conference
at the University of South Carolina, Columbia
March 31-April 1, 2006

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Eric Wilson, Wake Forest University
Plenary Speaker: Dr. Ed Madden, University of South Carolina

Whether discussing the Industrial Revolution, the Woman Question, or other forms of political turmoil, many nineteenth-century writers condensed larger issues of the day into specific literary events -- or moments -- that both reflected and defined the historical and cultural climate of the time.

Our fourth annual graduate conference hopes to examine key cultural moments of the nineteenth century and their relationship to both contemporary and modern literary creation, criticism, and reception. How was the significance of a given moment either crystallized or created by a literary work? How did specific historical events or movements shape nineteenth-century literature? How were scientific innovations used by authors in their works to reflect social or political revolutions? How did writers on opposite sides of the Atlantic or on opposite sides of the world respond to the same cultural moments? How do modern cultural moments reflect or shape our perception of nineteenth-century texts?

Possible topics could include but are not limited to:
· Historical and revolutionary moments (responses to the American and French Revolutions, the Act of Union, the Napoleonic Wars, the War of 1812, the Corn Laws, the Peterloo Massacre, the First Reform Bill, the Mexican-American War, the Italian Revolution, the Crimean War, the Civil War, the assassination of Lincoln, Reconstruction)
· Colonial moments (The Louisiana Purchase, the Slavery Abolition Act, the Opium Wars, the Sepoy Rebellion, the dissolution of the British East India Company, the Boer Wars, Jim Crow)
· Gender-specific and sexual moments (the Custody of Infants Act, the Seneca Falls Convention, bigamy trials, the Married Woman's Property and Divorce Act, the Criminal Law Amendment Act, the formation of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, Oscar Wilde's trial)
· Scientific moments (the opening of Jessop's Surrey Iron Railway, the Apothecaries Act, the Anatomy Act, publication of The Origin of Species, the vivisection debate)
· Ideological moments (the Second Great Awakening, the publication of the Communist Manifesto)
· Artistic and literary moments (the publication of Lyrical Ballads, the invention of steel plate engraving, the Copyright Act of 1842, the birth of the Pre-Raphaelites, the Wagner/Brahms debate)
· Celebratory moments (emancipations, jubilees, turn-of-the-century celebrations, the end of the Spanish Inquisition, The Great Exhibition)

Abstracts of 250 words or less are due by November 15, 2005. Please include your name, the name of your institution and program, and any A/V needs that you may have. Submit abstracts electronically via email to respective representatives:

Jessie Bray (American Literature): erat_hora_at_JUNO.COM
Celeste Pottier (British Literature): pottier_at_gwm.sc.edu

Shelley Johnson (Comparative Literature or non-English literature):

A scholarly press has expressed interest in publishing a volume of essays from the conference. We anticipate choosing 14 to 16 essays for inclusion in this collection.

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Received on Sat Oct 29 2005 - 14:49:50 EDT