UPDATE: Edith Wharton and Material Cultures Collection (10/1/06; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
contact email: 

CFP: Edith Wharton and the Material Cultures of the Book edited collection:
deadlines extended (abstracts, 1 October 2006; contributions, 1 April 2007).

Contributors are encouraged to interpret the idea of the material culture of
the book as widely as they wish, drawing upon research from sociology,
economic and social history, literary theory, bibliography, book history,
philosophy and anthropology. I would particularly welcome contributors seeking to
examine Wharton’s publication, production, dissemination and place in book
history and material culture outside of an American context. Some topics that you
might wish to discuss include:

Wharton’s relationship with her publishers in the USA, UK, France and
The economics of the book trade and its impact on Wharton’s writing
Wharton and her literary agents
The representation of the book as ‘material culture’ in Wharton’s fiction
The production and distribution of Wharton’s books (especially during WW1)
Wharton’s libraries, real and fictional
Propaganda and the material and moral utility (or economy) of the book
Wharton’s own understanding of the material culture of the book vis-à-vis
visual art, music, drama or film
Contemporary theories (from economics, politics and philosophy) of the
material value of literature that impinged upon Wharton and her writing
Contingent serialisation vs. the definitive volume: a material or immaterial
Expatriation vs. domesticity: the material freight of literature
Wharton’s bibliophilia: material or sentimental?
When is a book a book? Material culture, ‘dry goods’ and the idea of the
book in the American ‘Gilded Age’ and after
Recent theoretical work by Bourdieu, Chartier, Darnton etc and its relevance
to Wharton scholarship
Advertising Wharton’s books
Material culture and the mass market for fiction: elite vs. popular
consumption patterns
Wharton’s sensitivity over the presentation (binding, paper, punctuation
etc) of her books

Please register your interest in this project by sending an abstract of
c.500 words and a brief CV by the deadline of 1 October 2006 to the editor, Dr
Shafquat Towheed at SSTowheed_at_aol.com. Accepted contributors will have until 1
April 2007 to submit their manuscripts, which should ordinarily be
c.7000-8500 words in length. If you wish to discuss this project, feel free to contact

Dr Shafquat Towheed, Institute of English Studies, The University of London
E-mail: SSTowheed_at_aol.com

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Received on Tue Jul 18 2006 - 17:43:22 EDT