Simms and Memory

deadline for submissions: 
April 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
William Gilmore Simms Society
contact email: 

“Thou fill'st from the winged chalice of the soul/ Thy lamp, O Memory, fire-winged to its goal.”

-  Mnemosyne-Lamp of Memory-Ricordanza - Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1881)




The William Gilmore Simms Society

University of South Carolina


SEPTEMBER 28-30, 2018

            William Gilmore Simms (1806-1870) was the antebellum South’s most prolific novelist, poet, critic, and historian and falls under the broad definition of “romantic” author.” Thus when turning to his work we are turning to an earlier period of history and society even as Simms himself takes his readers back to earlier epochs and locales. As beings living “between past and future” we profit from seeking to understand the particular way in which he worshipped the goddess of “Mnemosyne” – mother of the nine muses. Accordingly, the thematic issue for the 2018 Conference is “Simms and Memory.”          

           The Simms Society invites all interested scholars to a conference exploring this theme from any and all perspectives and angles of approach along with any other question related to the literary output of William Gilmore Simms. The Simms Society welcomes academics, graduate students, and undergraduates from across the disciplines - history, literature, philosophy, and political science etc. - and would like to provide a venue in which they can present their work.  

 Revised papers may be considered for inclusion in The Simms Review, a refereed journal published by the Simms Society. Cash prizes for the best undergraduate and graduate student papers will be offered, which include refunds of registration fees; to be considered, complete student papers, not abstracts, must be submitted by April 15, 2018, and students must read papers at the conference. Prizes for the best undergraduate and graduate essays will be awarded in the amount of $150 and $250respectively. Academics should submit 1-2 page abstracts by July 1, 2018. Please join us in Columbia for this outstanding biennial event on September 28-30, 2018.

           Students should send papers, and professionals should send abstracts, via e-mail, along with brief (50-100 words) biographies to Colin Pearce at Questions can be directed to the same e-mail address.

           Conference registration is $125 for academic presenters and other attendees and $50 for students who are presenting. The fee includes an opening reception, a banquet, a program, a one-year membership in the Simms Society, and a copy of The Simms Review. Payment may be made through the William Gilmore Simms Society website at where additional information on Simms may also be found.

          Scholars are invited to explore the free resources available, including Simms primary sources, through the Simms Initiatives website at