Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The ‘Exotic’ Body in 19th-century British Drama

The ‘Exotic’ Body in 19th-century British Drama

University of Oxford
Funded under the 2011 Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowships scheme, European Commission

25-26 September 2014
Faculty of English Language and Literature, University of Oxford


Convenor: Dr Tiziana Morosetti (Oxford)

Confirmed speakers:
Professor Ross Forman (Warwick), Dr Peter Yeandle (Manchester),
Dr Hazel Waters (Institute of Race Relations, London)


Increasing attention has been paid in recent years to the representation of the Other on the 19th-century British stage, with key studies such as Acts of Supremacy: The British Empire and the Stage, 1790-1930 (Bratton et al. 1991), The Orient on the Victorian Stage (Ziter 2003), Bodies in Dissent: Spectacular Performances of Race and Freedom, 1850-1910 (Brooks 2006), Racism on the Victorian Stage: Representation of Slavery and the Black Character (Waters 2007), Nineteenth-Century Theatre and the Imperial Encounter (Gould 2011), China and the Victorian Imagination: Empires Entwined (Forman 2013). Building on these, the conference aims at exploring the concept, politics, and aesthetic features of the ‘exotic’ body on stage, be it the actual body of the actor/actress as s/he performs in genres such as the ‘Oriental’ extravaganza, or the fictional, ‘picturesque’ bodies they bring on stage. A term that in itself needs interrogation, the ‘exotic’ will therefore be discussed addressing the visual features that characterize the construction and representation of the Other in 19th-century British drama, as well as the material conditions, and techniques that accompany the ‘exotic’ on stage on the cultural and political background of imperial Britain.

One of the dissemination activities for the two-year project ‘The Representation of the “Exotic” Body in 19th-century English Drama’ (REBED), funded under the 2011 Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowships scheme, the conference also hopes to function as a site for discussing the state of the art on the ‘exotic’ in the theatrical cultures of both Romantic and Victorian Britain; contributions on ongoing research and/or recently completed projects are therefore particularly encouraged.
Although attention will be paid mostly to the non-European Other, papers addressing a European ‘exotic’ are also welcome.

Topics include the following:

Definitions of ‘exotic’:
-Is the non-European Other on stage really ‘exotic’?
-Are any genres more ‘exotic’ (or more liable to convey ‘exotic’ stereotypes) than others?
-Do different dramatis personæ and/or settings convey different degrees of ‘otherness’?
-Can the British on stage be ‘exotic’, and, if so, to what extent?
-Is the spectacular on stage itself ‘exotic’?

Staging the ‘exotic’ body:
-How are costumes, make-up, scenery, movements employed to construct the ‘exotic’?
-Are any visual features more recurrent than others?
-To what extent is the visual representation of the ‘exotic’ body historically accurate?
-How does music contribute to the staging of the Other?
-Who embodies the ‘exotic’? Is the acting career informed by bringing the Other on stage?
-Who were the audiences? Did their composition have an impact on the performance of the ‘exotic’?
-Are any experiences abroad relevant to how managers staged the Other in Britain?
-In what ways were representations of the ‘exotic’ body informed by venues?
-The Other on the London stage and the provinces

Cultural and political backgrounds:
-To what extent did audiences’ expectations affect theatrical representations of the Other?
-In what ways do class, gender, race inform the acting and managing of ‘exotic’ pieces?
-To what extent did scientific and anthropological accounts inform theatrical portraits of the Other?
-Were illustrations of (European and/or) non-European countries informed by theatre?
-In what ways have political narratives influenced (or been influenced by) the ‘exotic’ on stage?
-Has the legal frame for the theatre influenced the staging of the Other?
-Visual points of contact between popular entertainment and theatrical representations of the Other

The travelling ‘exotic’:
-How do texts such as Arabian Nights, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, or Mazeppa ‘travel’ between dramatic and non-dramatic genres?
-Survival of a Romantic ‘exotic’ in the Victorian staging of the Other;
-Is Othello on the Romantic and Victorian stage ‘exotic’?
-How do translations/adaptations from other languages contribute to the construction of the Other on the British stage? Can we define a British specificity when it comes to the ‘exotic’?
-Has the theatrical representation of the ‘exotic’ in Britain had an impact on non-British stages?

The legacy of 19th-century ‘exotic’ body:
-Contemporary plays/performances addressing the Other on the 19th-century British stage (e.g. Lolita Chakrabarti’s Red Velvet)
-The ‘exotic’ body on the British stage in a diachronic perspective
-The non-European Other in the 20th- and 21st-century Christmas pantomime


Abstracts of no more than 300 words and a short bio should be sent to rebedconference@gmail.com by 25 May 2014. Speakers whose abstracts have been accepted will be notified by 15 June.






Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Victorians Like Us II International Conference will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, the 26-29 November 2014, organized by the University of Lisbon Centre for English Studies (ULICES).
The call for papers has been announced.
All details can be accessed in the site below.


Friday, February 14, 2014

British Society for Literature and Science Conference 2014: Registration Open

Registration is now open for the ninth annual conference of the British Society for Literature and Science, which will take place at the University of Surrey, Guildford, on 10-12 April 2014. Keynote talks will be given by Professor Jim Al-Khalili (University of Surrey), Professor Bernard Lightman (York University, Toronto), and Professor Mary Orr (University of Southampton). The conference will finish with an opportunity to visit Down House, the home of Charles Darwin, on the afternoon of Saturday 12 April.

Accommodation: please note that those attending the conference will need to make their own arrangements for accommodation. Information on local hotels is available on the conference website.

Membership: conference delegates will need to register as members of the BSLS (annual membership: £25 waged / £10 unwaged). It will be possible to join the BSLS when registering for the conference.

To register for the conference please visit the University of Surrey online store at http://tinyurl.com/p92lleg. The deadline for registration is 27 March 2014.

Information about how to get to the University of Surrey is available here: http://www.surrey.ac.uk/about/visitors/travel/.


For further information and updates about the conference, please contact Gregory Tate (g.tate@surrey.ac.uk) or visit the conference website at http://tinyurl.com/pp6ubz5.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

British Society for Literature and Science Conference 2014: Call for Papers

British Society for Literature and Science Conference 2014: Call for Papers

The ninth annual conference of the British Society for Literature and Science will take place at the University of Surrey, Guildford, on 10-12 April 2014. Keynote talks will be given by Professor Jim Al-Khalili (University of Surrey), Professor Bernard Lightman (York University, Toronto), and Professor Mary Orr (University of Southampton). The conference will finish with an opportunity to visit Down House, the home of Charles Darwin, on the afternoon of Saturday 12 April.

The BSLS invites proposals for twenty-minute papers, or panels of three papers, on any subjects within the field of literature and science. This year the organisers would particularly welcome proposals addressing links between science and European and world literatures, and proposals for papers or panels on teaching literature and science. However, the BSLS remains committed to supporting and showcasing work on all aspects of literature and science.

Proposals of no more than 250 words, together with the name and institutional affiliation of the speaker, should be sent in the body of messages (not in attachments) to g.tate@surrey.ac.uk. Proposals for panels should include a separate proposal for each paper. The closing date for submissions is Friday 6 December 2013.

The conference fee will be waived for two graduate students in exchange for written reports on the conference, to be published in the BSLS Newsletter. If you are interested in being selected for one of these awards, please mention this when sending in your proposal. To qualify you will need to be registered for a postgraduate degree at the time of the conference.

Accommodation: please note that those attending the conference will need to make their own arrangements for accommodation. Information on local hotels is available on the conference website.

Membership: conference delegates will need to register as members of the BSLS (annual membership: £25 waged / £10 unwaged). It will be possible to join the BSLS when registering for the conference online.


For further information and updates about the conference, please contact Gregory Tate (g.tate@surrey.ac.uk) or visit the conference website at http://tinyurl.com/pp6ubz5.

Friday, October 4, 2013


The Susan Morgan Graduate Student Essay Prize 
Guidelines for the Inaugural 2014 Award
Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies (INCS) is pleased to announce the inauguration of the Susan Morgan Graduate Student Essay Prize. The prize has been established in honor of Susan Morgan, Distinguished Professor of English at Miami University, a prolific, interdisciplinary scholar of nineteenth-century literature and culture, and a longstanding member of INCS. Professor Morgan’s scholarship has shaped the interdisciplinary fields of women’s writing, travel writing, and empire studies—fields that are central to the work of many INCS scholars—and she has generously mentored countless graduate students and junior colleagues. Her selected publications include In the Meantime: Character and Perception in Jane Austen’s Fiction (Chicago, 1980); Sisters in Time: Imagining Gender in Nineteenth- Century British Fiction (Oxford, 1989); Place Matters: Gendered Geography in Victorian Women’s Travel Writings about Southeast Asia (Rutgers, 1996); and Bombay Anna: The Real Story and Remarkable Adventures of the King and I Governess (California, 2008). We are fortunate to have Professor Morgan as a valued member of INCS.

Guidelines
1) The Susan Morgan Graduate Student Essay Prize will be awarded annually, at the annual conference each year. The inaugural 2014 prize will be awarded in Houston, Texas.
2) Eligible essays must be posted to the INCS conference website by the submission due date and presented for discussion by the author at the conference. Submissions may not exceed the length specified for INCS papers on the conference website; for 2014, the length is 4,000 words.
3) The prize will be announced at each annual conference.
4) The award is $500 and publication of the essay in Nineteenth-Century Contexts, the INCS-affiliated peer- reviewed journal. The winning author will work with readers for the journal and be given the opportunity to revise the essay prior to publication.
5) The second-place essay will be awarded the designation “Honorable Mention.”
6) The due date is the date designated for papers to be submitted prior to the INCS annual conference. For the inaugural 2014 essay prize, that date is March 1, 2014. Papers submitted after that date cannot be considered for the prize.
6) Papers should be uploaded to the conference website in doc format, per website instructions. Please include this phrase at the top of submission papers: SUBMISSION FOR THE SUSAN MORGAN GRADUATE STUDENT ESSAY PRIZE (which will be removed before the paper is posted to its assigned conference panel).
7) The competition will be judged by a panel of judges appointed by the INCS board.
8) No judge will be allowed to assess his or her own submission or to assess work submitted by anyone with whom the judge has worked closely.
9) INCS reserves the right to award no prize in any given year. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


British Society for Literature and Science Conference 2014: Call for Papers

The ninth annual conference of the British Society for Literature and Science will take place at the University of Surrey, Guildford, on 10-12 April 2014. Keynote speakers will include Professor Bernard Lightman (York University, Toronto) and Professor Mary Orr (University of Southampton). The conference will finish with an opportunity to visit Down House, the home of Charles Darwin, on the afternoon of Saturday 12 April.

The BSLS invites proposals for twenty-minute papers, or panels of three papers, on any subjects within the field of literature and science. This year the organisers would particularly welcome proposals addressing links between science and European and world literatures, and proposals for papers or panels on teaching literature and science. However, the BSLS remains committed to supporting and showcasing work on all aspects of literature and science.

Proposals of no more than 250 words, together with the name and institutional affiliation of the speaker, should be sent in the body of messages (not in attachments) to g.tate@surrey.ac.uk. Proposals for panels should include a separate proposal for each paper. The closing date for submissions is Friday 6 December 2013.

The conference fee will be waived for two graduate students in exchange for written reports on the conference, to be published in the BSLS Newsletter. If you are interested in being selected for one of these awards, please mention this when sending in your proposal. To qualify you will need to be registered for a postgraduate degree at the time of the conference.

Accommodation: please note that those attending the conference will need to make their own arrangements for accommodation. Information on local hotels will shortly be made available on the conference website.

Membership: conference delegates will need to register as members of the BSLS (annual membership: £25 waged / £10 unwaged). It will be possible to join the BSLS when registering for the conference online.

For further information and updates about the conference, please contact Gregory Tate (g.tate@surrey.ac.uk) or visit the conference website at http://tinyurl.com/pp6ubz5.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Beyond the Grand Tour: Continental Tourism and Travel Writing, 1815-1915

With the re-opening of borders on the Continent in 1814/15, writers flooded the literary market with works exploring continental tours and experiences. We invite submissions for a proposed essay collection concerning the trends and evolutions of travel writing about and within the Continent during the long nineteenth century. Essays might address gendered travel, narratives determinedly off the beaten paths, Byronic or other ‘celebrity’ tourism, commercialization and mass tourism, genre challenges and boundaries, and the intersections of tourism and travel in many different avenues. Essays will consider the variety of ways in which writers responded to the opening of borders and their accompanying crossings throughout the century, as well as the ways in which familiarity with such Continental landscapes mutated with the development of texts and culture at home and abroad. Authors are invited to submit their essays of approximately 6,500 words, by January 1st, 2014, via email to Dr. Benjamin Colbert (B.Colbert@wlv.ac.uk) and Dr. Lucy Morrison (lxmorrison@salisbury.edu); Palgrave has already expressed an interest in considering the collection. All enquiries are welcome.

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