“Sensational Violence: ‘The Mysteries Which Are at Our Own Doors,” MVSA 2014

Abstracts due: October 31, 2013

Dates: April 11-13, 2013

Location: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Entire CFP Link

See also: MVSA Conference CFP

Seminar Leader: Professor Lisa Surridge, Department of English, University of Victoria

In his review of sensation fiction in The Nation (1865), Henry James wrote that, “to Mr. Collins belongs the credit of having introduced into fiction those mysterious of mysteries, the mysteries which are at our own doors.” James’s remark captures the sensation novel’s capacity to surveil, strip, and probe domestic spaces, lives, and even bodies.

This seminar will welcome scholars interested in the capacity of the sensation novel and/or the sensational press to scrutinize violence in what Victorians strove to construct as the “private” sphere—that is, to expose spousal violence, sexual violence, violence against children, and related domestic crimes. The seminar leaders also invite papers that consider how such texts constructed privacy even as they exploded the very notion of a private sphere free of public surveillance.

Send a 300-word abstract and 1-page CV (both as Word documents) by October 31, 2013 to Lisa Surridge: lsurridg@uvic.ca

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