The British Association for Romantic Studies

The British Association for Romantic Studies (BARS) is the UK’s leading national organisation for promoting the study of Romanticism and the history and culture of the period from which it emerged.

With over 400 members worldwide, BARS acts as a hub for scholarship by organising events, supporting conferences, circulating news, awarding prizes and fellowships, supporting early career researchers, publishing a review journal, and establishing links with sister organisations.  It provides a voice for Romantic Studies both within higher education and more generally, advocating for the importance and interest of the Romantic period by providing platforms for fostering, disseminating and promoting excellent research.

BARS’ flagship events are biennial international conferences, held in odd-numbered years.  These are the largest regular meetings of Romanticists in the United Kingdom.  Each conference is addressed by leading figures in the field and at recent events over two hundred scholars have generally given papers.  Recent conferences have included Romantic Improvement (University of York, 2017), Romantic Imprints (Cardiff University, 2015), Romantic Imports and Exports (University of Southampton, 2013), Enlightenment, Romanticism & Nation (University of Glasgow, 2011), Romantic Circulations (Roehampton University, 2009) and Emancipation, Liberation, Freedom, organised jointly with the North American Society for the Study of Romanticism (NASSR) (University of Bristol, 2007).

The Association’s open-access review journal, The BARS Review, is published twice-yearly on the BARS website and offers comprehensive coverage of monographs, essay collections, biographies and other works that reflect the research interests of BARS members.  Past reviews are available in the archive, and older reviews from the BARS Bulletin & Review, the current review’s predecessor publication, can be accessed through the Bulletin archive on this site.  BARS also publishes news on its blog and maintains an aggregated feed collecting posts on Romantic Studies.  There is an electronic mailbase for BARS members, informing them of worldwide conferences, events in the field and relevant new publications.  The Association is also active on Facebook and Twitter.

In addition to its International Conferences, BARS supports a successful series of biennial Early Career and Postgraduate Conferences (held in even-numbered years), which provide a convivial environment in which postgraduate and early career scholars can give and listen to academic papers and discuss their work with contemporaries.  BARS’ most substantial funding scheme is the Stephen Copley Research Awards, to which postgraduate and early career applicants can apply for sums of up to £500 to help them with research expenses incurred accessing libraries and archives.  BARS also runs a number of other award schemes, including the BARS First Book Prize, the BARS/Wordsworth Trust Early Career Fellowship, the BARS-UCSL Scottish Romanticism Research Award and the BARS-BAVS Nineteenth-Century Matters Fellowship for an early career scholar without a permanent appointment.  In addition, we support conferences and seminar series in the field.

We hope that you will consider becoming a BARS member and telling colleagues and postgraduates about BARS.  For information on becoming a member of the Association, see the How to Join section of this site.