Call for Papers: Romantic Interventions: From Idealism to Activism

By Emily Paterson-Morgan

February 11-13, 2021, TU Dortmund University, Germany

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

Angela Esterhammer, University of Toronto
Prof. Peter Kitson, University of East Anglia
Prof. Sharon Ruston, Lancaster University

The era of Romanticism is commonly
understood as a time of unrest and change, perceptibly impacting the lives of
individuals as well as collective entities across multi-faceted boundaries. In
“interlocking interests”, as Raymond Williams claimed in his classic Culture
and Society
, “a conclusion about personal feeling became a conclusion about
society, and an observation of natural beauty carried a necessary moral reference
to the whole and unified life of man” (1958: 48). With the French Revolution at
its centre, arguably the decisive historical moment of the era, certain structures
of feeling
emerged in liberal and revolutionary circles on the European
continent. As the breaking-apart of Europe’s ancien régimes sparked
drastic changes on political and socioeconomic levels, Romantic thinkers sought
to employ their texts and activities as contributions to a critical
re-evaluation of the status quo. In a Wordsworthian manner, many Romantic poets
understood themselves as prophets of the people, whose duty it was to intervene
in dominant representational discourses and thereby challenge well-established
hegemonic power structures. At the same time, however, Romantic movements must
not be understood as having solely gyrated around the intellectual efforts of
the elitist few. Fruitfully and …read more