BARS Blog

BARS Blog

News and Commentary from the British Association for Romantic Studies

Call for Papers: The 1820s: Innovation and Diffusion

Call for Papers

The 1820s: Innovation and Diffusion

University of Glasgow, 11th and 12th April 2019

Plenary Speakers: Ian Duncan (Berkeley) and Angela Esterhammer (Toronto)

The reign of George IV was a decade of profound transformations, during which technological, generic and ideological innovations opened up culture to unprecedentedly vast audiences, mandating the creation of new modes of communication and production, but also triggering fears about the loss of social cohesion and nostalgia for perceived lost identities.  By 1830, Samuel Taylor Coleridge felt empowered to contend that ‘Roads, canals, machinery, the press, the periodical and daily press [and] the might of public opinion’ had fundamentally reconfigured political and social discourse.

This international conference aims to produce a new understanding of the underappreciated innovations and diffusions that occurred during the 1820s.  Topics to be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • The Spirit of the Age
  • Media, mediality and technology
  • The proliferation of institutions
  • Reform and reaction
  • Cultural mediators
  • Public(s) and audiences
  • Mobility

Abstracts of around 300 words for 20-minute papers should be sent to 1820sconference@gmail.com along with the proposer’s name, institutional affiliation (if any) and a short biographical note (50-100 words).

We also invite proposals for keywords for framing the 1820s suitable for a special session of 5-minute presentations employing a single slide.  Examples might include ‘Power’, ‘Speculation’, ‘Generation’, ‘Environment’, ‘Regulation’, ‘Genius’ and ‘Flash’.  Proposals should be submitted in the same manner as paper abstracts, but should be no more than 150 words and should include ‘Keyword Proposal’ in the subject line of the email.  Keyword proposals may be submitted either alone or with an abstract for a paper.

The submission deadline for both kinds of contribution is Friday November 30th 2018.

A key function of the conference is to catalyse a new edited collection.  In the year following the conference, there will be a pair of workshops in York and Glasgow at which invited authors will develop papers into chapters in conversation with other contributors.  Funding kindly provided by the Royal Society of Edinburgh will be available to support attendance at these workshops.

For a fuller version of this Call for Papers, along with further information on the conference and related events, please see our website: http://www.1820s.net.