The Neo-Victorian and the Late Victorian
The Neo-Victorian and the Late-Victorian: Texts, Media, Politics
2-3 September 2021, University of Brighton
The last few decades have witnessed an increasing interest in revisiting, reproducing or rewriting various aspects of nineteenth-century culture, particularly that of the late Victorian period, whether in the form of neo-Victorian literature, steampunk, media archaeology, fashion, documentaries and period dramas, among others.
This trend has received various different interpretations, either as part of the recycling of past periods, styles and texts characteristic of postmodernism of the 1980s, of the ‘memory boom’ of the 1990s and the ensuing culture of commemoration, anniversaries and memorialisation, or the most recent signs of a widespread imperial nostalgia, evident not just in various media texts, such as film or television, but also in contemporary political realities like Brexit.
These are only some of the symptoms of this widespread trend and only some instances of the critical approaches that they have received, and this two-day conference seeks to explore this trend from a diverse range of disciplinary, theoretical and methodological perspectives.
The specific focus of the conference is on papers that address the dialectic relationship between the two historical periods. We are particularly interested in the ways in which the late-Victorian is re-envisioned and reconceptualised within the neo-Victorian.
The list below is only indicative of areas for which we welcome submission of abstracts:
- neo-Victorianism in literature, film and television
- Gothic horror, then and now: literature, film, television and gaming
- steampunk (literature, art, fashion, subculture)
- contemporary politics and imperial nostalgia (Empire 2.0, Global Britain, etc.)
- media archaeology, archive studies, museums and the late Victorian ‘frenzy of the visible’
- contemporary sexual politics and late Victorian queer cultures
- The New Woman and the suffragette movement
- contemporary terrorism and the 1890s
- crime, detection and punishment
- nostalgia and material culture: the yearning for the handmade
Associate Professor Dr Claire Nally (Northumbria University)
'Steampunk and Postcolonialism'
Professor Kim A. Wagner (Queen Mary, University of London)
‘Afterlives of Empire: Between Nostalgia and Amnesia’.
(Media Archaeology Keynote tbc)
The current plan is still to run the conference on campus but, if necessary, it will take place virtually. Final plans will be announced later in the academic year.
Please send 300-word abstracts accompanied by a 90-word bio to conference organisers Victoria Margree and Aris Mousoutzanis by 28 May 2021 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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