Katherine Mansfield: Germany and Beyond

deadline for submissions: 
April 30, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
Janet Wilson, University of Northampton



Katherine Mansfield:

Germany and Beyond


Bad Wörishofen, Germany

16-17 July 2022

(readings, tour 18 July)



An international conference organised by the

Katherine Mansfield Society


Hosted by the Bad Wörishofen Mayorality

and Tourist and Spa Bureau





It is well known that Katherine Mansfield’s first book of stories, In a German Pension (1911), was inspired by her eight months’ stay in the Bavarian spa town of Wörishofen in 1909 at the age of 21, but the importance of Germany and all things German in her writing has not been explored in any depth until recently. Although Mansfield did not return to Germany in the same way as she kept visiting France, her spiritual home in Europe, Germany continued to hold a fascination for her long after her 1909 sojourn, and myriad associations can be traced in her fiction as well as her notebooks and letters.

This two-day conference (with readings by creative writers on 11 July) aims to open up to new scrutiny the impact of Germany on Mansfield’s work and life: its language, peoples and cultures. These range from the setting in Munich of her story ‘The Little Governess’, to her passion for music by composers such as Beethoven, Bruckner, and Wagner, her love of the poetry of Heinrich Heine, and literary influences such as the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm. Indeed, her longing for her German classes at Queen’s College in Harley Street because of the dashing Professor Walter Rippmann, reveals her early devotion. Another influence on her love of German and Germany is the writing of her cousin, the writer Elizabeth von Arnim, widow of Graf Henning von Arnim-Schlagenthin, a member of the Prussian aristocracy, and her friendship with Elizabeth, which developed during her stay in Montana, Switzerland in the last two years of her life.

This conference will be held in Bad Wörishofen, a Bavarian spa town that honours Mansfield as one of its most famous residents and a significant cultural icon, in fostering local civic pride and identity. In 2019, on the occasion of her 130th birthday, a specially commissioned statue of Katherine Mansfield gazing out over the Iceberg Pond in the Spa Park, was unveiled at civic celebrations.

The Katherine Mansfield Society in collaboration with the Bad Wörishofen Mayorality and Tourist and Spa Bureau, is proud to announce this conference that aims to explore Germany’s meaning to Mansfield and its place in her vision of the world.


This newly revised CFP includes new topics based on the COVID-19 pandemic that has caused this conference to be twice postponed.


  • Wörishofen and artistic inspiration: Mansfield’s In a German Pension
  • Bavaria and the German Pension stories: nationality, gender and satire
  • German poetry in the works of Mansfield (e.g. Heinrich Heine)
  • German music in Mansfield’s life, work and as part of her legacy
  • German art, architecture and visual culture in Mansfield’s writing
  • German/Prussian family connections: Elizabeth von Arnim
  • Mansfield, travel, Germany and ‘beyond’
  • Mansfield and fairy tales
  • The gothic and fantastic: Germanic sources and influences
  • The legacy of Mansfield in German writing, music and art today
  • The German reception of Mansfield’s works
  • German influences in Mansfield’s education (e.g. Walter Rippmann)
  • Translating into German / German translations of Mansfield’s work
  • Teaching and studying Mansfield in Germany and Beyond
  • Mansfield, Sebastian Kneipp, naturopathy and other holistic therapies
  • The Germans/Germany as imaginative, satiric inspiration for Mansfield
  • Mansfield and Frieda von Richthofen (wife of D. H. Lawrence)
  • Mansfield as icon and inspiration for German cultural production

NEW: Papers are also invited on the following topics which may be approached through Mansfield’s work, relevant literary texts, or Bad Wörishofen as a spa town:

  • 2020 COVID-19 pandemic: illness, health, healing
  • 1918 flu pandemic: causes, treatments, social effects


NB: All other topics will be considered on application to organisers




Abstracts of 200 words, together with a 50-word bio-sketch,

 should be sent to the conference organisers:


Dr Delia da Sousa Correa (Open University, UK),

Dr Janka Kascakova (Catholic University in Ružomberok, Slovakia)

Dr Tracy Miao (Xi’an International Studies University, China)

Dr Monika Sobotta (Open University, UK)

Professor Janet Wilson (University of Northampton, UK)


 at kms@katherinemansfieldsociety.org


Submission deadline: 30 APRIL 2022



Selected proceedings will be published in a special issue of Humanities , a peer-reviewed, open access journal for all humanities disciplines that focuses on ideals of human existence