CFP: [Religion] Religion & Rebellion in 19th-Century American Womenâs Writing at SSAWW (12/5/08; 21-24 Oct 09)

full name / name of organization: 
Mary Wearn

This is a call for a proposed panel for the fourth conference of the
Society for the Study of American Women Writers (SSAWW).

Religion and Rebellion in Nineteenth-Century American Women’s Writing

Nineteenth-Century American women’s culture was immersed in religious
doctrine and practice, most often within Christian contexts. In fact, many
female authors of the era deployed representations of faith and faith
communities as a vehicle of cultural rebellion. However, women’s use of
religious culture as a subversive touchstone varied widely. Activists
like Harriet Beecher Stowe, for example, used a feminine, Christian ethos
as a badge of moral superiority and as a warrant for radical political
advocacy. Other female authors, such as Emily Dickinson, rebelled
against mainstream Christianity itself, and some, like Sarah Piatt,
figured religion as a vehicle of patriarchal control to be resisted.

This panel will explore nineteenth-century women’s use of religion both as
a weapon for and target of cultural critique. Papers are sought on any
aspect of religion and rebellion in nineteenth-century women’s poetry and
prose. Although literature of the period is most clearly immersed in
Christian contexts, treatments of other faith systems are most welcome.
Please send a one page abstract and a one page cv to Mary Wearn by
December 5th. Materials can be sent via email to

The Society for the Study of American Women Writers Conference will be
held October 21-24, 2009 at the Sheraton Society Hill in Philadelphia,

For further information, please consult the SSAWW website at

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Received on Sun Sep 14 2008 - 20:46:45 EDT