Paradox and Form: High and Low Art in Early Modern Literature

deadline for submissions: 
June 15, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Southeast Renaissance Conference, SAMLA Affiliate
contact email: 


South Atlantic Modern Language Association Conference, November 3-5, 2017

Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, Georgia

Southeast Renaissance Conference, SAMLA Affiliate


CFP: Paradox and Form: High and Low Art in Early Modern Literature


Dr. Ruth McIntyre, Kennesaw State University


According to Kant, the sublime simultaneously induces pain and pleasure, and in his sociological reading of Kant, Pierre Bourdieu argues that taste classifies the taster, that individual, subjective appreciation of art is predicated upon a priori sociocultural privilege.  The early modern period was the site for clashes of many intellectual threads: medieval to modern, Catholic to Reformation, manuscript to print.  In addition to his voluminous theological writings, Martin Luther wrote countless polemical texts riddled with scatological invective.  From Cervantes’s parody of chivalric romance to Star Wars screenplays rewritten in early modern English, the boundary between high and low culture has provided a paradoxical space to interrogate both the sublime and the mundane, the pleasurable and the painful.


This panel seeks to address the aesthetics of high and low in the paradoxical space between them in the context of early modern English literature.  Possible topics might include:


  • Paradox and form in Early Modern Literature
  • Early modern satire
  • Modern and post-modern appropriations and re-workings of early modern texts
  • Early modern aesthetic theory
  • Highbrow and lowbrow in Shakespeare


Please submit 250-word abstracts to Dr. Ruth McIntyre at by June 15, 2017.