This one-day conference aims to explore critically productive ways of talking about the nature and role of friendship in the creation and enjoyment of literary texts. Given friendship's famous resistance to definition, that is no simple matter. The conference, by discussing particular textual examples of the relationship between literature and friendship from 1500 to the present day, aims to address some important, general questions. How have our notions and ways of talking about friendship changed? How significant have those various notions been to our hopes for the shaping power of literature, and the humanities? Can one talk of a humane reader, or of a humanity born of reading?
As that suggests, this conference does not want to avoid considering the very difficult subject of the role of literature in our lives, but rather, while recognizing the difficulties, to offer some examples of how literature enriches or impoverishes our lived experience. To that end the conference will conclude with a plenary session open to the general public, in which Professor Christopher Ricks and Dr Mark Vernon will speak about the ways in which literary and philosophic texts have shaped their understandings of friendship.
Send comments and questions to H-Net
Webstaff. H-Net reproduces announcements that have been submitted to us as a
free service to the academic community. If you are interested in an announcement
listed here, please contact the organizers or patrons directly. Though we strive
to provide accurate information, H-Net cannot accept responsibility for the text of
announcements appearing in this service. (Administration)