The Digital Nineteenth-Century Narrative, NeMLA 2016, Hartford CT.

full name / name of organization: 
Bryn Gravitt, Tufts University
contact email: 

NeMLA 2016: March 17-20, 2016
Hartford, Connecticut; Hosted by University of Connecticut

In recent years, the web has seen an explosion of digital interpretations of nineteenth-century texts. The Lizzie Bennett Diaries web series translates Elizabeth from Pride and Prejudice, via video diary, into an out-of-work grad student living with her family; "Texts From Jane Eyre" imagines how Jane would interact with Rochester and St. John via text message; David Copperfield has his own Facebook page; and there are at least four video games based on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. This session combines interests in nineteenth century, digital media, and cultural studies to investigate how we understand our current world through the lens of nineteenth-century characters and stories. These digital objects, themselves often performing analysis of their source material, have previously been left out of the nineteenth-century critical conversation. This panel hopes to theorize these digital forms by asking: How have these stories changed in their digital adaptations? How has the intervention of the digital in storytelling affected the interpretations of these characters? What do these artifacts add to the archive of criticism surrounding the primary text? Though many sequels, parodies, and riffs have been written in print (think The Eyre Affair and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) this panel hopes to focus specifically on digital interpretations of nineteenth-century texts. Some possible areas of inquiry include but are not limited to:

- web comics

- video blogs

- Twitter feeds and Facebook posts

- gaming and game studies

- the nineteenth century on film

- satire, parody, and the comedic

- how gender and racial politics translate across medium

- the injection of literary criticism into popular culture

Please submit abstracts of 250-300 words that formulate relationships between new modes of digital storytelling and the nineteenth-century sources they narrate. Upload your proposals directly to the NeMLA site for this session:

Abstracts due September 30, 2015