Seventh Ghent Conference on Literary Theory
25-26 June 2010 – Ghent University (Belgium)
Jointly organised with the University of Sussex
Ludwig Wittgenstein’s life and work, both early and late, have sparked a rich array of responses from writers. For some reason, a mode of thought continuously circling the logical and/or grammatical core of ‘our’ language, hence our convictions and beliefs, seems to call forth reactions which probe the freedom of human expressiveness. An impressive amount of writers has been reading Wittgenstein, in various ways paying homage to his work.
This two-day conference intends to reverse the perspective by asking how Wittgenstein read literature. The two days will be loosely organised along the following lines:
Day 1 -Stress on philosophy: What conception of literature is to be found in Wittgenstein’s texts? What conception of literature does his philosophy of language encourage or allow? What do his scattered remarks and evaluations of literature and literary writers, as well as his remarks on questions of rhetoric and style, tell us about his idea of literature? Did Wittgenstein’s literary culture and reading of literary texts from outside the philosophical canon influence his conceptions of language?
Day 2 – Stress on literature: Does, and, if so, how does his view of literature change our culturally embedded idea of literature (of ‘literariness’, of literature’s epistemic status, etc.)? Does Wittgenstein’s view of literature imply a method or theory of literature? How do his remarks on literature relate to the work of more dominant literary critics and theorists in the modernist period (that is, roughly, between 1850 and 1950)?
Confirmed speakers include Alice Crary (New School, NY), Christopher Norris (Cardiff University), Antonia Soulez (University of Paris VIII), Wolfgang Huemer (University of Parma) and Peter Lamarque (University of York).
We welcome 500-word proposals for 30-minute papers that preferably take their cue from either a single text or writer Wittgenstein touched upon, or from a specific passage or remark in his writings, relevant to his view of literature. For this purpose (though we do not wish to preclude what constitutes literary, philosophical, and scientific writing, or, indeed, their relationship with each other), ‘literary’ should be taken in a narrower rather than a wider sense; i.e. Shakespeare, Milton, or Trakl, rather than Frazer, Bunyan, or Boltzmann. Please attach to your proposal a short academic CV including your main publications.
We envision the publication of (a selection of) conference papers after the event. The deadline for proposals is 15 February 2010. Please send abstracts to email@example.com and D.Steuer@sussex.ac.uk. You will be notified shortly thereafter.
Dr Daniel Steuer
University of Sussex
Phone: 0044/1273/877385 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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