Victorian Saints and Sinners Roundtable
NeMLA Apr. 3-6, 2014
The figure of the prostitute is more than an emblem for mid Victorian religious, social, and sanitary reform; she is emblematic of challenges to the domestic narrative of a morally centered middle class that was at the heart of the British Empire’s self-identity. The prostitute is representative of increased anxieties about miscegenation, sexuality, suffragist movements, and the visibility of women in roles outside the private sphere.
This roundtable seeks participants who interrogate the keen interest of the Victorians in missionary work, philanthropy, and other reform efforts designed to save women from lives of prostitution at home in the heart of the British Empire during the years 1837-1901.Topics of inquiry include but are not limited to:
The role or portrayal of the fallen woman in literature or art (Possible authors include D.G. Rossetti, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Rudyard Kipling, Thomas Hardy, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Gissing, Amy Levy)
Portrayals of the Salvation Army or similar movements in novels, short stories, poems, drama, or periodicals
Reform texts (In Darkest England and the Way Out, etc.) and social exposés (the 1861 edition of London Labour and the London Poor, Havelock Ellis, etc.)
The artistic representation of specific reformers and their efforts to end prostitution (such as William Gladstone, the Salvation Army, etc.)
Women writing and campaigning for change around The Woman Question (Frances Power Cobbe, Sarah Stickney Ellis, Annie Besant, Dinah Mullock Craik etc.,)
The Contagious Diseases Acts of 1864, 1866, and 1869 and medical reformers like William Acton and their literary impact
Please submit 250-300 word abstracts, along with a brief biographical statement, in .doc or .docx format to Anna Brecke (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Rebekah Greene (email@example.com).
Deadline: September 30, 2013
Please include with your abstract:
Name and Affiliation
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)
The 2014 NeMLA convention continues the Association's tradition of sharing innovative scholarship in an engaging and generative location. This capitol city set on the Susquehanna River is known for its vibrant restaurant scene, historical sites, the National Civil War museum, and nearby Amish Country, antique shops and Hershey Park. NeMLA has arranged low hotel rates of $104-$124.
The 2014 event will include guest speakers, literary readings, professional events, and workshops. A reading by George Saunders will open the Convention. His 2013 collection of short fiction, The Tenth of December, has been acclaimed by the New York Times as: “the best book you’ll read this year.” NeMLA’s Keynote Speaker will be David Staller, Producer and Director of Project Shaw. Mr. Staller presents monthly script-in-hand performances of Bernard Shaw’s plays at the Players Club in New York City.
Interested participants may submit abstracts to more than one NeMLA session; however, panelists can only present one paper (panel or seminar). Convention participants may present a paper at a panel and also present at a creative session or participate in a roundtable. http://www.nemla.org/convention/2014/cfp.html
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