CFP: Disruptive Labor, Language, and Gender (7/15/21; RSA Dublin 3/30-4/2/22)

deadline for submissions: 
July 15, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
Jessica C. Murphy

This panel examines the language used to represent disdained or illicit early modern labor. We seek papers that ask how gender functions in cultural attempts to prohibit, criminalize, or disparage marginalized workers or practioners of unsanctioned professions  (e.g., cure peddalers, sex workers, pirates, poachers, counterfeiters). What do representations of such disruptive laborers tell us about the dynamic between subsistence pursuits and the accumulation of economic surplus in early modern burgeoning capitalism? How do these disruptive economies depend upon and sustain already authorized systems? Do literary or artistic representations commodify this unruly work  in ways that economically disrupt the market or by reinforcing the status quo of power and authority?


Please submit an abstract of 250-500 words to Jessica C. Murphy ( by July 15th. We are especially interested in work by emerging scholars who examine the topic from a variety of traditionally marginalized and intersectional perspectives.