Legacies of Modernism: The State of British Poetry Today. Paris, 9-11 June, 2011.

full name / name of organization: 
Institut Charles V, Université Paris-Diderot

Legacies of Modernism: The State of British Poetry Today

9-11 June, 2011, UFR Etudes-Anglophones Institut Charles-V, Université Paris Diderot

This conference aims to provide a space for a critical reception in France for various currents in contemporary British poetry which lie outside the literary and academic mainstream, and which for this reason have received relatively scant attention thus far in France. This is a poetry which takes off from the London-based modernism of the early twentieth century, and the subsequent development of this modernism in American poets from Louis Zukofsky and Charles Olson to Frank O'Hara and the L-A-N-G-U-A-G-E poets, in particular retaining an insistence on linguistic innovation and a deep engagement with the mediums and means available to a poet at any given time. Yet for this poetry—or better, these poetries—what is at issue is not simply formal experimentation; rather, they are characterised by a commitment to grasp contemporary society and to probe the place of poetry within it. As well as plenary papers by Allen Fisher, Drew Milne, Peter Middleton and Simon Jarvis, there will be a reading with Carol Watts, John Wilkinson and Tom Raworth (tbc).
The conference welcomes proposals, in English, for papers on individual poets, historical or genealogical accounts of the various currents in contemporary British poetry, or particular themes or problematics for poetry and poetics. Such topics might include (but need by no means be restricted to):

-Committed poetry and the politics of linguistic innovation
-Significant figures for this poetry: Denise Riley, J.H. Prynne, Roy Fisher (and others)
-Younger poets such as Andrea Brady, Jeff Hilson, Keston Sutherland (and others)
-Pastoral and Nature Poetry for a Post-Industrial era
-Rhythm, metre, and traditional forms
-Relations between British and American poets
-Women poets and feminist writing
-Anxieties of influence; poets engaging with literary history
-Text, body and materiality
-Contemporary British poetry within European modernism
-Performance and performativity
-Poetry in and outside the academy

Deadline for papers 1 February 2011; please send 250 word abstracts to legaciesofmodernism@gmail.com. For more details, please contact David Nowell-Smith, david.nowell-smith@univ-paris-diderot.fr.

Comité d'organisation:
Dr Abigail Lang, Université Paris Diderot
Dr David Nowell-Smith, Université Paris Diderot

Comité scientifique:
Dr Abigail Lang, Université Paris Diderot
Dr David Nowell-Smith, Université Paris Diderot
Dr Ian Patterson, Queens' College, University of Cambridge
Prof Robert Hampson, Royal Holloway University of London
Prof Paul Volsik, Université Paris Diderot

Sponsored by LARCA (Laboratoire de Recherche sur les Cultures Anglophones), Université Paris Diderot. There will be a conference fee of 30€ payable on arrival.