Constructing the Other in the Age of Defoe's Friday [4-15-09/9-25-09]

full name / name of organization: 
Lora Geriguis/The Defoe Society

Constructing the Other in the Age of Defoe's Friday
The First Biennial Conference of the Defoe Society
Tulsa, OK—September 25-26, 2009

While the purpose of the first meeting of the Defoe Society is to "interrogate the question of how an examination of Defoe and his work can function as a vehicle for understanding his time and place," this panel will push the focus into an even more narrow lens, to an examination of the age through Friday, a single character of Defoe's creation. This panel proposes to treat Friday as a primer on the construction of race and otherness in the long eighteenth century. Papers not explicitly focused on Friday per se, but otherwise addressing the issues of racial and colonialistic identity in the period will also be welcomed for consideration.

Please send 300 word abstracts to by April 15, 2009.

Possible paper topics include:
Friday's literary parentage (e.g. Davenport's Caliban and Neville's Phillipa)
"I likewise taught him to say Master": the naming and language of otherness
"[H]e would have worshipp'd me and my Gun": weaponry and otherness
"Why God no kill the Devil?": otherized challenges to Christianity
Bunamuckee: representations of otherized religion
"[H]e loved me more": sentimental and romantic colonization
"I made my Man Friday dig": otherized labor in the colonial scheme
Friday's offspring: Yahoos and other others
The displayed other in 18th London and the English court

Papers on other topics of relevance to Defoean studies may be sent directly to the conference chair, Robert Mayer at