“Odd Bodies,” INCS 2017

Abstract Deadline: November 1, 2016

Dates: March 16-19, 2017

Location: Philadelphia, PA

CFP Link

Nineteenth-century bodies were poked and prodded, characterized, caricatured, corseted and cossetted, disciplined, displayed, naturalized, normalized, medicalized, mapped and mechanized. Sciences and pseudosciences brought the body under scrutiny to an unprecedented degree—phrenology, psychology, physiology, anatomy, paleontology, microbiology, germ theory, principles of population, zoology, and sexology, all contributing to the proliferation of bodily discourses. Improvements in medicine and sanitation coexisted with poor sewage, and the ever-present fear of disease, and bodies were variously protected and regulated through Factory Acts, Public Health Acts, and the Contagious Diseases Act. Hospitals, workhouses and freakshows corralled and categorized. Pre-raphaelite painters proferred strong and sexualized women, while overpopulated novels featured the blind and deaf, fragile children and disabled adults, and all worried whether such outward signs accurately attested to the content of a character. Meanwhile, changes wrought in understanding one kind of body reverberated through its analogs; the human body was taken as model for corporate bodies, the body politic, bodies of knowledge—and vice versa. And where there is a model, a norm, there is also that which defies and defines that norm. INCS 2017 will pay special attention to the problematic, marginalized and metaphoric—to odd bodies.

Upload proposals via conference website by November 1, 2016. For individual papers, send 250-word proposals; for panels, send individual proposals plus a 250-word panel description. Please include a one-page CV with your name, affiliation, and e-mail address. Proposals that are interdisciplinary in method or panels that involve multiple disciplines are especially welcome. Questions? Contact Barri Gold at incs2017@gmail.com.

 

“Victorian Taste,” MVSA 2017

Abstract Deadline: September 30, 2016

Dates: April 28-30, 2017

Location: Oberlin College, Ohio

Full CFP Link

What was Victorian taste? How did British Victorians at home and abroad discuss, theorize, market, judge, and consume taste? How was taste imagined and envisioned in relation to literary, visual, and musical arts? How did new knowledge of Britain’s historical and aesthetic past impact tastes of contemporary Victorians? MVSA’s 2017 conference invites papers that reflect fresh and current thinking about taste and the Victorians. Proposals are sought from scholars working in art history, musicology, history, science, philosophy, theater, and literature. We particularly encourage presentations that will contribute to cross-disciplinary discussion.

The 2017 conference will be held at Oberlin College & Conservatory, in the 1963 Minoru Yamasaki-designed buildings that reflect the neo-gothic splendor of some of the college’s oldest buildings. Aside from attending panels, seminars, and the Jane Stedman plenary lecture, conference participants will have the opportunity to tour a special Victorian exhibit at the Allen Memorial Art Museum and attend “What the Victorians Heard,” a concert by Oberlin’s Collegium Musicum (directed by Steven Plank), as well as dozens of other ongoing musical and theatrical performances.

For individual papers, panels, or lecture-demonstrations, send a 300-word abstract and 1-page vita (as MWord documents) by September 30, 2016, to conferencesubmissions@midwestvictorian.org.

NCSA 2017 Session: “19th Century Theatre”

Abstract Deadline: September 15, 2016

Location: Charleston, SC

Dates: February 2-4, 2016

Individual CFP from VICTORIA Listserv; NCSA CFP available here

I’m soliciting proposals for 20-minute papers about American, British, European, and/or World theatre during the long nineteenth century.  Scholars will present accepted papers at the upcoming conference of the Nineteenth-Century Studies Association, which takes place 2-4 February 2017 in Charleston, South Carolina.

Papers might address “legitimate” theatre, “illegitimate” theatre (e.g. melodrama, pantomime, spectacle, hippodrama, comedy, farce), adaptation (e.g. Byron, Dickens, Scott, Stowe), translation (e.g. Schiller, Kotzebue), Romantic theatre, closet dramas, the “well made play,” or particular plays/authors (e.g. Jerrold, Fitzball, Haines, Boucicault).

Scholars might explore social, economic, gender, political, and/or aesthetic issues relating to plays, actors, and managers, to music hall, or to particular theatres.  Other topics might include copyright, censorship, audiences, sexualities, and the “long run,” as well as regional and traveling companies.
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“Fashion and Material Culture in Victorian Fiction and Periodicals”

Abstract Deadline: July 31, 2016

If accepted, Full Essay (5000 words) Due: January 27, 2017

CFP from VICTORIA Listserv

Elizabeth Wilson, in Adorned in Dreams: Fashion and Modernity (2013), speaks of clothes being simultaneously objects and images (ix). Clothes can neither eschew their intimacy with the human body, nor how they map out a personal life course. As a result, their materiality and the performance of dress is a significant pleasure of fiction. As Wilson continues to note, fashion is an aesthetic medium “for the expression of ideas, desires & beliefs circulating in society [and] its function is to resolve formally, at the imaginary level, social contradictions which cannot be resolved” (9). These issues are played out in the fashion plate, cartoon, advert and satirical or sartorial article, as well as the novel.

Fashion’s role within these intertwined narratives is indicative of gender, class, age, mental state, race and nationality, empire, disability, marital status, transgression and moral worth. Not only were characters made recognisable through their dress, but readers of serial fiction encountered them in between adverts, print and patterns. Thus, how dress is depicted in fiction responds to its material paratext. Victorian periodicals observed the fashion seasons, changes in feminine and masculine status, and distinctions between generations, as well as perpetuated the rituals of dress for christening, coming of age, weddings, funerals and mourning. In all, they acknowledged the production, advertising and consuming of clothing. Continue reading

NeMLA 2016: “‘Reader, I married him!’: Investigating 19th-century Readers and Reading the 19th Century”

Abstract Deadline: September 30, 2016

Dates: March 23-26, 2017

Location: Baltimore, MD

CFP Link

As Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre reminds us with her exclamation, “Reader, I married him!,” writers of fiction in the nineteenth century were very aware of their readership with texts. In the increasingly literate century, readers were savvy consumers, rapt fans, and scathing critics. They read penny papers, novels, and genre specific magazines. They read at home, in libraries, and on trains. In breaking the fourth wall to address her “reader,” Bronte evokes the relationship between audience and text that was complicated in the nineteenth century by the publishing industry and new technologies. Contemporary readers of nineteenth century texts also find themselves in a relationship with technology. New digitization projects have made previously inaccessible texts available to wide audiences. Interactive e-texts are changing the meaning of annotation. New textual formats, like social media and e-readers are making it possible to read collaboratively with people all over the world. Like our nineteenth century counterparts, the way we read is changing. This panel invites work examining readers and reading practice in the Victorian era and contemporary readers or readings of Victorian novels.

Topics might include:
– Depictions of reading in nineteenth century texts
– Reading in motion: planes, trains, and automobiles

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“Anxious Forms 2016: Masculinities in Crisis in the Long Nineteenth Century” (International)

Abstract Deadline: August 15, 2016

Date:October 28, 2016

Location: University of Glasgow

Full CFP Link

Speakers:
Professor Bradley Deane (University of Minnesota Morris)
Dr Patricia de Montfort (University of Glasgow)

‘Victorian manhood was by definition a state of permanent crisis, a site of anxiety and contradiction as much as a source of power.’ (Phillip Mallett, The Victorian Novel and Masculinity)

After the success of the inaugural Anxious Forms conference in 2014, the organizers are pleased to announce a second one-day conference which will consider the construction of masculine identities – both individual and collective – in the long nineteenth century. In a period which witnessed major conflicts, from the French Revolution to the First World War; the birth of mass culture and new print media; the emergence of new professional classes; the expansion of empire; the rise of the New Woman; and the extension of laws against male homosexuality, Victorian masculine identities became increasingly pluralised and fragmented. This interdisciplinary event will explore crises and contradictions in Victorian notions of manliness across a range of media including fiction, poetry, drama, journalism, photography, visual arts and material culture. Continue reading

NAVSA/AVSA 2017 Conference (International)

Abstract Deadline: October 12, 2016

Dates: May 17-20, 2017

Location: Florence, Italy

CFP Link

For the second time, NAVSA and AVSA will join forces for a conference in Italy.  This time the event will occur  at NYU’s La Pietra conference in Florence.  The conference will run from May 17 to May 20, 2017 and will be run jointly by NYU and Purdue.

There will be no specific theme—any topic of interest to Victorian scholars will be considered; however, given the location, we would be particularly interested to see papers on topics such as:  the Victorians in Italy, the representation of Italy in the nineteenth century, private collections, tourism, art, and garden design.

Proposals will be due October 12, 2016. They should be two pages (500 words) with a one-page curriculum vitae and should be submitted electronically as an attachment in .pdf format at the following URL:

http://navsa.org/submissions/conference-proposals/

If a whole panel is proposed, please include a cover letter explaining the logic behind the panel. All participants must have paid 2017 dues to NAVSA or AVSA.

Questions should be directed to: felluga@purdue.edu

“Past and Present: New Directions in Victorian Studies”

Abstract Deadline: July 1, 2016

Date: October 29, 2016

Location: Loyola University Chicago

CFP Link

Keynote Speaker:  Dr. Elaine Hadley, The University of Chicago
In Past and Present (1843), Thomas Carlyle states, “The condition of England, on which many pamphlets are now in the course of publication, and many thoughts unpublished are going on in every reflective head, is justly regarded as one of the most ominous, and withal one of the strangest, ever seen in this world.”
The Victorians were deeply invested in establishing the historical importance and future significance of their own time.  If thinkers like Thomas Carlyle read the past as a means to critique and shape the present, how do our own interpretations of the Victorian period reveal our understanding of contemporary society?  Why do we recall and historicize certain aspects of Victorian life and culture in the present day?  How should scholars in the 21st century understand the Victorian preoccupation with history?  Finally, can readings of the Victorian period provoke examination of the reasons behind the development of our own interpretative lenses?
LUCVS solicits paper proposals addressing these questions. Possible CFP categories include, but are not limited to the following: Nineteenth century, Gothic, Textual Studies, Queer theory, Women and Gender Studies, Art History, Marxist theory, Narrative theory, Post-colonialism, Religious studies, Theology, Poetics.
Please send abstracts no longer than 300 words to lucvictoriansociety@gmail.com no later than July 1, 2016. We welcome the research of professors, academics, independent scholars, and graduate students.

“Memory and Commemoration,” NCSA 2017

Abstract Deadline: September 30, 2016

Dates: February 2-4, 2017

Location: Charleston, SC

CFP Link

The NCSA program committee invites proposals on any aspect of “memory and commemoration” in the nineteenth century. From photographs and locks of hair to jubilee processions and civic monuments, nineteenth-century men and women sought to commemorate, preserve, and utilize personal and collective memories and histories. How did individuals remember loved ones, or their own histories? How did they celebrate corporate visions of the past, or dispute visions put forward by others? How were interpretations of the past used as tools of revolution, nation-building, imperialism, and other political activities? In what ways did new economies of tourism and consumerism support a culture of commemoration? How, too, have memories of the nineteenth-century past been contested by later generations? Topics might include civic commemorations, jubilees, holidays, public memorials, architectural changes, cemeteries, elegies, death rituals, photography, souvenirs, memoirs and autobiographies, or literary and artistic uses of the past. Papers may also analyze theoretical concepts of memory, invented traditions, and contested spaces, as well as interdisciplinary and alternate interpretations.

Send 250-word abstracts with 1-page CVs to ncsacharleston2017@gmail.com by September 30, 2016. Abstracts should include author’s name, institutional affiliation and paper title in the heading. They welcome panel proposals with three panelists and a moderator or alternative formats with pre-circulated papers and discussion. Please note that submission of a proposal constitutes a commitment to attend if accepted. Presenters will be notified in November 2016. Graduate students whose proposals have been accepted may submit completed papers to apply for a travel grant to help cover transportation and lodging expenses. Scholars who reside outside of North America and whose proposals have been accepted may submit a full paper to be considered for the International Scholar Travel Grant (see NCSA website for additional requirements: http://www.nscaweb.net).

“Dark Romanticism,” ICR 2016

Abstract Deadline: May 25, 2016

Dates: October 20-23, 2016

Location: Colorado Springs, CO

CFP Link

At the turn of the nineteenth century, ‘dark’ engineers – working at the intersection of artistic imagination and technological ‘progress’ – produced a number of automata, robots, and other simulations of life, both via literary conceptualization and in material realizations. While in some circles these developments were heralded as scientific advancement, in others dire warnings were sounded against such uncanny imitations of life – ‘horrid aberrations,’ the production of which evinced technological hubris, the arrogance of Enlightenment philosophy, and the vain attempt of science to supplant God and nature in the act of creation. Indeed, these manufactured monsters were sometimes taken as assaults upon human identity, psychology, and religion.

In line with the conference theme of “Dark Romanticism,” we are proposing a session of 15-20 minute papers on “Dark Romantic Automata,” to focus on the broadest possible interpretation of the title. We encourage submissions of 300-word abstracts by May 25, 2016 to Chris Clason clason@oakland.edu and Michael Demson mtd007@shsu.edu on this topic.

“Border States,” MMLA 2016

Abstract Deadline: April 30, 2016

Dates: November 10-13, 2016

Location: St. Louis, MO

CFP Link

The Midwest Modern Language association invites proposals for the 2016 conference in St. Louis, Missouri. Papers are accepted on any topic, yet participants are welcome to consider this year’s conference theme: “Border States.”

“Border States” is inspired by the 2016 conference location in the historic and culturally rich city of St. Louis, Missouri—a site shaped by indigenous, French, Spanish, and U.S. contact and conquest; by efforts to maintain and topple the institution of slavery; by western expansion; by the Great Migration, white flight, and urban renewal; and by refugee resettlement. Today, St. Louis serves as a continued reminder of both stubborn divisions and promising coalitions across lines of race, class, region, and nation that continue to shape lives and inform literature. As a result, we encourage papers that tackle the issue of “Border States” in both literal and figurative senses. Topics could include, but are not limited to, the following: Continue reading

“Border States” Dickens Society, MMLA 2016

Abstract Deadline: April 30, 2016

Dates: November 10-13, 2016

Location: St. Louis, MO

CFP from VICTORIA-Listserv

The Dickens Society invites proposals for a sponsored panel at the 2016 conference of the Midwest Modern Language Association in St. Louis, Missouri. Papers on any aspect of Dickens’s works will be considered, but we are especially interested in proposals that engage the broader MMLA conference theme, “Border States.”  The theme is inspired by the 2016 conference location in the historic and culturally rich city of St. Louis, Missouri—a site shaped by indigenous, French, Spanish, and U.S. contact and conquest; by efforts to maintain and topple the institution of slavery; by western expansion; by the Great Migration, white flight, and urban renewal; and by refugee resettlement. Today, St. Louis serves as a continued reminder of both stubborn divisions and promising coalitions across lines of race, class, region, and nation that continue to shape lives and inform literature. We therefore encourage papers that tackle the issue of “Border States” in both literal and figurative senses.

Topics might include, but are not limited to, the following: Dickens’s imaginative engagements with geographic borders, empire, nationalism, or cosmopolitanism; with travel, crossings, and cultural and economic exchanges; with psychology and states of consciousness; with states of matter and transition; with inter-generic adaptations and innovations; with Victorian urbanization and suburbanization; with the evolving stat(us) of authorship, publication, and the book market; or with states of personal, biological, or psychological transition such as adolescence, migration, marriage, parenthood, or illness and death.

Please send 500-word abstract and brief (1-page) CV to Sean Grass at scgrass@iastate.edu. Proposals are due April 30, 2016, and authors will be notified by June 1, 2016.

“Music and Politics in Britain, c. 1780-c.1850 (International)

Abstract Deadline: June 1, 2016

Location: King’s College, London

Dates: June 2-3, 2017

CFP from BAVS Listserv

Music was everywhere in early nineteenth-century British politics. Coronations, commemorations, marches, protests, dinners, toasts, rallies, riots, festivals, dances, fundraisers, workplaces, streets—all hummed to the sounds of music. It provided anthems for anointing and songs for sedition, rhythms for rituals and ballads for ballots, chants for charters and melodies for militaries. In all these spaces, media, and fora, radicals, reformers, loyalists, and conservatives all competed for the best tunes. And they did so because of their belief in music’s capacity to affect its listeners—to arouse joy and indignation, sadness and sympathy, merriment, mischief, and mirth—and its ability to bind participants together in new visions of community, nation, and identity.

Yet, for all its omnipresence, music often struggles to be heard in the dusty silence of the archive. Music’s evanescence and impermanence defies established, text-based methods of historical enquiry. Indeed, most historical analysis of music and political culture has focused exclusively on song lyrics. We need a much broader frame of analysis to understand how music connects to the political. Music, text (if present), and the circumstances and social dynamics of performance, all combine to generate a range of meanings for those taking part—one person’s pleasant entertainment might be another’s call for revolution, and for some, both at once. This multiplicity of meanings projected by musical performance is at once challenging and beguiling, precisely for the ways in which it variously circumvents, contradicts, reinforces, or interweaves with the textual elements of political discourse. Bringing music to the centre of analysis has rich potential to offer fresh insight into political traditions, symbols, divisions, and struggles. An explicit aim of this conference is to facilitate this by promoting a deeper interdisciplinary exchange between historians, musicologists, and scholars of visual, literary, and theatrical culture.

To these ends, we invite proposals for papers from scholars in any discipline that address the role of music in political culture in late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain. Chronological boundaries are flexibly conceived, and proposals for papers which address earlier and later periods but which overlap with 1780–1850 are welcome.

The conference will consist of a series of roundtable discussions among all participants of pre-circulated papers. Papers will be circulated by 12 May 2017. Once revised, these will form the basis of a collection of essays on the intersection of music and political culture in this period. The conference is supported by the ERC-funded project ‘Music in London, 1800–1851’ led by Professor Roger Parker. There is no registration fee, accommodation and dinner will be provided, and travel costs will be reimbursed where possible.

Abstracts (max. 500 words) for 5,000 word papers should be sent, with a short biography, to david.kennerley@history.ox.ac.uk by 1 June 2016.

For more information please contact the organisers, Drs David Kennerley (Oxford) and Oskar Cox Jensen (King’s College London) at david.kennerley@history.ox.ac.uk or oskar.cox_jensen@kcl.ac.uk. Continue reading

“Pernicious Trash? Victorian Popular Literature, 1830-1880” (International)

Abstract Deadline: April 30, 2016

Date: September 12, 2016

Location: Leeds Centre for Victorian Studies (Leeds, UK)

CFP Link

There is now before us such a veritable mountain of pernicious trash, mostly in paper covers, and “Price One Penny”; so-called novelettes, tales, stories of adventure, mystery and crime; pictures of school life hideously unlike reality; exploits of robbers, cut-throats, prostitutes, and rogues, that, but for its actual presence, it would seem incredible.

When people think of Victorian literature, authors such as Charles Dickens, William Makepeace Thackeray, the Bronte sisters, Thomas Hardy, and Oscar Wilde spring to mind. Yet alongside these authors there existed a multitude of more ‘popular’ authors such as G. W. M. Reynolds, Pierce Egan the Younger, Henry Downes Miles, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, and Ellen Wood. Furthermore, numerous anonymous writers week after week churned out popular pieces of mass-market fiction for readers’ enjoyment. In view of this, the interdisciplinary ‘Pernicious Trash’ conference seeks proposals for 20 minute papers which examine the ‘cheaper’ side of literature during the long nineteenth century (‘virtuous trash’ such as religious/moralist magazines and papers on The Penny Magazine are also welcome). Such topics might include:
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“Embarassing Bodies: Feeling Self-Conscious in the Nineteenth Century” (International)

Abstract Deadline: April 22, 2016

Date: June 17, 2016

Location: Birkbeck, University of London

CFP Link

I begin to think that instead of being, as I once thought I was, the most self-conscious person living, I am much less self-conscious now […] than almost anybody.”
(John Stuart Mill, Letters, 1834)

Why were the Victorians so keenly aware of themselves? Why is the articulation of embarrassment such a preoccupation of nineteenth-century culture? The period is one in which both ‘embarrassment’ and ‘self-conscious’ first take on their modern meanings, and in which scientific, literary, and visual cultures seek to explore the links between the body and emotional expression. How might we approach this anxiety surrounding awkwardness? And what might be the links between embarrassment and modernity?

This one-day symposium, funded by a Wellcome Trust ISSF Grant, will explore embarrassing moments in the nineteenth century, and consider the range of ways in which the period’s writers and thinkers represent and conceptualise these experiences. From the ungainly bodies of Dickens’s greatest comic creations to the highly-charged moments of shared shyness in the novels of Eliot, and from Darwin’s explorations of the physiology of blushing to Rossetti’s red-cheeked Fair Rosamund, nineteenth-century culture is fascinated and energised by such moments of bodily preoccupation. This symposium hopes to draw together researchers from a range of disciplines, to consider these articulations of embarrassment across literary, scientific, philosophical, and visual cultures of the period.

Proposals of up to 300 words for papers of 20 minutes should be sent to e.curry@bbk.ac.uk by Friday 22nd April 2016.

“The First of May: Politics in the Victorian Imagination” (International)

Deadline: April 11, 2016

Dates: July 6-8, 2016

Location: Gladstone’s Library (Wales)

CFP Link

Personally commissioned by Queen Victoria, Franz Xaver Winterhalter’s The First of May 1851 depicts Arthur, Duke of Wellington, exchanging gifts with Prince Arthur, Wellington’s godson and the seventh child of Victoria and Prince Albert. The painting symbolises a particular vision of Victorian self-definition: victorious in war, conservative in government, expanding overseas and titans of industry. Both Arthurs were born on the 1st May; the elder a leading military and political figure who defeated Napoleon at Waterloo and was twice Prime Minister, the younger a prince who would oversee much of the Victorian empire into the twentieth century. Prince Albert’s attention is distracted by the Crystal Palace, the setting for The Great Exhibition that celebrated Britain’s role as an industrial leader. Continue reading

2016 Wordsworth Summer Conference (International)

Abstract Deadline: April 15, 2016

Dates: August 8-18, 2016

Location: Rydal Hall,Cumbria

CFP Link

We invite proposals for twenty-minute papers on all aspects of William Wordsworth, his contemporaries and the Romantic period. Papers that identify a bicentenary theme, 1816–2016, will be welcomed.

Proposals: 250 word proposals for papers of no more than 2750 words, together with a brief autobiographical paragraph, should occupy no more than 2 sides of A4 (they will be copied into a composite file). Please do include your name, institution and e-mail address on the abstract. Please do not send it as a pdf file. Proposals should be e-mailed by 15 April 2016 to proposal.wsc@gmail.com

All other enquiries about accommodation, costs etc. should be e-mailed to the Conference Administrator, Carrie Taylor, at carriegrasmere@aol.com

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“Screening the Victorians in the Twenty-First Century”

Abstract Deadline: March 15, 2016

Articles, if accepted due: October 15, 2016

CFP from VICTORIA List-serv

2017 Special Issue of Neo-Victorian Studies

Despite frequent predictions of their disappearance, appropriations of the Victorian era never quite seem to leave our film, television and computer screens. Indeed, in popular prime-time viewing from Doctor Who (2005-) to Sherlock (2010-) and Penny Dreadful (2014-), and in cinematic blockbusters such as Sweeney Todd (2007), Sherlock Holmes (2009) and Crimson Peak (2015), the Victorians remain a particularly visible part of present-day culture. This special issue will explore recent popular screen Victoriana ‘for the masses’ and the politics of its production, distribution, audience reception and consumption. We seek contributions that engage with the breadth of screen media, from big-budget film and television series produced by the likes of the BBC and Showtime to online web-series created by small production companies and non-professionals. How has screen Victoriana developed since the millennium? How might we address questions of neo-Victorianism’s periodization via the film medium? In a time when transnational co-production is increasingly common, how important are national origins and audiences in shaping neo-Victorianism on screen? What ‘sells’ these myriad moving images of the nineteenth century? Wherein resides their distinctive appeal and what meanings, values, and affects do audiences invest therein? Possible topics could include but are by no means limited to:

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NEH Summer Seminar, “Mapping, Text, and Travel”

Deadline: March 1, 2016

Dates: July 11-August 12, 2016

Location: Newberry Library (Chicago, IL)

Program Link

The five-week NEH Seminar, led by James Akerman and Jordana Dym, will examine the complex relationship between text, mapping, and travel from the emergence of the modern world to the dawn of the digital age, focusing on the genre of travel mapping within the wider context of the history of cartography and travel publication. The program of lectures, workshops, and discussions encourages 16 participants to cross disciplinary boundaries and move beyond regional and chronological specialties to reflect on the ways in which mapping has shaped travelers’ imagination and the experience of place and landscape, of identity and history, and of time and space. The seminar will embrace a broad geographical and chronological focus on the Atlantic World richly supported by the Newberry’s rich holdings of cartography, geography, art, history, literature, and the history of printing from the 15th to the 21st centuries.

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NEH Summer Seminar: “Take Note and Remember”

“Take Note and Remember: The Commonplace Book and Its American Antecedents”

Deadline: March 1, 2016

Dates: July 17-July 31, 2016

Location: Asheville, NC

Program Link

How do we manage information overload and make our own sense of the world? How, why, and in what ways do we take note and remember? Feeling overwhelmed with information is not only an aspect of the digital age. Earlier attempts to manage and make sense of information are found from the medieval period on, but especially in commonplace books and scrapbooks from the 18th through the 20th century. Commonplace books (books containing noteworthy text and images copied from other sources) and their descendants, the scrapbook, photo album, memory book, journal, anthology, and others, are holders of meaning, memory, identity, and place. Today many take the form of Pinterest or blogs. All are attempts made to manage and make personal sense of information.

We look forward to bringing together a diverse, collegial, interdisciplinary group of college and university teachers from across the United States to join us in the beautiful, historic region of Asheville, North Carolina. Together we will create an immersive experience with these exceptionally rich artifacts, which capture in words and/or images records of lived experience.

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