Conversations across the Arts: Adaptations in the Long Eighteenth Century

deadline for submissions: 
September 15, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
ASECS 2022 (Baltimore, 31 Mar.-2 Apr. 2022)
contact email: 

When we talk about the eighteenth-century and adaptation, we frequently talk about adaptations of eighteenth-century literature and art, often into film. Yet adaptation was a common practice during the eighteenth century as well. From Nahum Tate’s 1681 adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear to William Hogarth’s 1731 representation of a scene from John Gay’s Beggar’s Opera (1728); from Henry Fuseli’s images inspired by, and William Blake’s illustrations for, Dante’s Divine Comedy to the numerous adaptations of Samuel Richardson’s Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded (1740), eighteenth-century artists, writers, and composers regularly adapted works of their contemporaries and predecessors into new genres (e.g., novel to opera) and across media (e.g., novel to oil painting), creating what Giuseppe Mazzotta has called a “conversation among the arts.” Drawing on the distinctions Julie Sanders makes between adaptation and appropriation (Adaptation and Appropriation, 2006), we invite papers that explore these phenomenona across the long eighteenth century. We welcome papers on any kind of adaptation in the period, with a particular interest in adaptations across the arts. Please submit abstracts of approximately 300 words to Daniella Berman ( and Ashley Bender (