"English Real Estate: Narratives of Entailment and Transmission in the English Novel" Panel for Narrative 2011

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International Conference on Narrative
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Papers are being solicited for a panel entitled, "English Real Estate: Narratives of Entailment and Transmission in the English Novel" for this year's International Conference on Narrative, to be held at Washington University in St Louis April 7-10, 2011.

In _Reflections on the Revolution in France_, Burke describes the English nation as "locked fast as in a sort of family settlement; grasped as in a kind of mortmain for ever." Burke's description of the British Constitution invokes two different novelistic genres, the sentimental and the gothic, as he writes British political history as an "entailed inheritance derived to us from our forefathers." Burke's romantic conception of "Englishness" as a gothic inheritance depends upon the literal transmission of real, concrete objects: "our hearths, our sepulchres, and our altars," but most explicitly, our estates. This panel will explore plots of inheritance in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (e.g. _Middlemarch_, _Bleak House_, _Brideshead Revisited_), anchoring their notions of Englishness in the transmission of physical objects and real property. Critical studies of inheritance narratives have tended to center around the abstract notion of an English heritage, neglecting to account for the idiosyncratic aspects of English property law. We solicit papers that deal with narrative questions of transmission, problems of inheritance, hauntedness, time and history as they get figured through the ownership of physical sites, etc.

Please send 300-500 word paper proposals to keya.kraft@gmail.com by Friday, October 22 2010.

For more information about Narrative, see: http://narrative.wustl.edu/.