CfP: IGA Conference 2015: Gothic Migrations

The biennial conference of the International Gothic Association is delighted to announce that it will be held at Simon Fraser University, in Vancouver, Canada on 28 July-Aug 1, 2015. Our host will the SFU Department of English.

We invite submissions of paper and panel proposals based upon the theme of Gothic Migrations.


Konferenz: "Vampire. 'Von den Blut-Saugern, so bekanntlich nach ihrem Tod umbher gehen'"

Die Schwabenakademie Irsee und die Technische Universität Dresden laden vom 02.-04. Oktober 2014 zu einer Konferenz zu Vampiren in der Schwabenakademie Irsee ein (Klosterring 4, 87660 Irsee).

Wer heute nach Vampiren sucht, findet sie in Bestsellern und Blockbustern. Der Fürst der Finsternis glänzt im Licht der Öffentlichkeit - vor allem durch volle Kassen und hohe Quoten. Seine beständige Wiederkehr scheint gesichert, solange sie finanziellen Erfolg verspricht. Von der Angst, die der Vampir einst auslöste, ist nur noch wenig zu spüren. Sein brutales und blutiges Wesen hat sich in die verschiedensten Formate der medialen Unterhaltung verflüchtigt. Die aktuelle Begeisterung für Vampire hat ihre Wurzeln im ersten Viertel des 18. Jahrhunderts. In der damaligen Wissensordnung avancierte er zu einem realen Wesen. Später legten Autoren wie Bram Stoker den Grundstein für die bis heute andauernde Medienpräsenz des Ungeheuers. Immer diente der Vampir als Projektionsfläche für Ängste oder Wünsche. Je nach Kontext wird er in Kunst und Literatur als Indikator politischer, religiöser, gesellschaftlicher oder psychischer Zustände inszeniert. Dabei spielt die sexuelle Anziehungskraft des Dämonischen eine wichtige Rolle. Die Tagung will den düsteren Facettenreichtum dieser geheimnisvollen Gestalt von den volksreligiösen, medizinhistorischen und literarischen Wurzeln bis zu den neuesten popkulturellen Adaptationen ausleuchten.


Workshop: "Demons in the Body", Mansfield College, Oxford, July 28, 2014

This workshop intends to bring people interested in the meaning and purpose of traditional beliefs in demons and vampires in Southeast Europe together to share ideas and to try to draw the line between “our part of Europe” and “their part of Europe”. Further it will also explore the ways in which these ideas, both positively and negatively, can be seen to inform many contemporary narratives of disease, the supernatural and the undead. In particular, the workshop will aim to explore the relationship between illness, disease, demons, vampires and the body. It will seek to bring together practitioners and academics to look at alternative concepts of illness, and especially to discuss the idea of ‘infection’ with a focus on Southeast European Folk belief and the theories of Paracelsus about illness-bringing forth demons. Equally there will be a clear examination of the concept of demons as figurations of illness and there will be an assessment of the ways of dealing with them and how to ‘heal’ the ill ones. The over-arching purpose of the day is to attempt to get a new look on the vampire and its role in Southeast European folklore and the ways in which the past remains as an ‘undead’ presence in the modern world.


CfP: Sensational Men

The Falmouth University and The Victorian Popular Fiction Association invite proposals for a one-day-symposium themed "Sensational Men: Victorian Masculinity in Sensation Fiction, Theatre and the Arts" on April 18 2015 at Falmouth University, Cornwall

Villainous, feminised, weak and wanting; men in the sensation genre are often seen as lacking. Critical readings of the genre, moreover, have tended to focus on its constructions of femininity, largely neglecting representations of men and masculinity. Examining the under-explored subject of Victorian men, masculinity and sensation, “Sensational Men: Victorian Masculinity in Sensation Fiction, Theatre and the Arts” represents a timely and important intervention in the field.
This one day symposium at Falmouth University will provide a point of focus and intellectual exchange for scholars working in many different fields such as: popular fiction studies, theatre studies, Gothic studies, art history, early photography and film, theories of gender, sexuality and nation in nineteenth century studies

CfP: The Circus in German Literature and Film

"'The Greatest Show on Earth!': The Circus in German Literature and Film"
Call for Papers in the session on magic and reading at the
46th Annual Convention of the Northeast Modern Language Association (NEMLA)
April 30-May 3, 2015 
in Toronto, Ontario

Recent German literature and film have seen an increased focus on the performative space of the circus. Germany’s longest-running television series Tatort turned to the topic in the episodes ‘Schwindelfrei’(Wiesbaden, 2013) and ‘Zirkuskind’ (Ludwigshafen, 2014) and in literature, authors Zsuzsa Bánk (Die hellen Tage, 2011) and Yoko Tawada (Etüden im Schnee, 2014), among others, have integrated this space into their recent publications. Nevertheless, the circus as a site of academic investigation and inquiry still remains poorly visited from all sides. The circus is, however, not a new cultural phenomena and has been present in German literature and film even before this recent re/turn as evinced in works such as Wim Wenders’ film Wings of Desire (1987), East German DEFA films such as Gerhard Klein’s Alarm im Zirkus (1954), and Günther Grass’s world famous novel Die Blechtrommel(1959).
This panel investigates the role of the circus in its past and present manifestations as a site of performance, identity construction, entertainment, surveillance, pleasure, and violence and proposes answers to the question of why at a time when the circus as an art form and leisure space of society is in decline, it has, nevertheless, become all the more prominent in contemporary German cultural productions. Furthermore, we seek to identify what, if anything, is particularly German about the circus as it is presented in such works.

Abstract Submission: Please follow the link provided to submit abstracts to this panel. https://nemla.org/convention/2015/cfp.html#cfp15304

Anna Stainton (University of Toronto), Vanessa Plumly (University of Cincinnati)
contact email: anna.stainton@utoronto.ca

via University of Pennsylvania, Dept. of English

CfP: Regional Gothic

William Hughes and Ruth Heholt invite submissions of article proposals for a collection of essays on the "Regional Gothic."

With the referendum for Scottish Independence scheduled for September 2014 and the Cornish having recently been granted minority status, questions about the dis-unity of the ‘United’ Kingdom are prominent in the contemporary debate regarding nationalism and regional identity. Regional Gothic will explore these fractures and the darker imaginings that come from the regions of Britain.
The British regions, ‘imagined communities’ with fragile and threatened identities and boundaries, carry their own dark sides and repressions. The Gothic preoccupation with borders, invasion, contamination and degeneration imbricates quite naturally with the different and shifting meanings that arise from writings from – and about – the scattered margins of British identity. Locality affects the Gothic and Regional Gothic seeks to explore these specificities. Gothic fictions of the regions may originate from within those territories or be imagined from elsewhere. Yet, whether coming from the inside or the outside, conceptions of the regional can powerfully inform ideas of identity and belonging. And, as Ian Duncan has pointed out, whilst this may sometimes be a positive thing, regionalism can also ‘register a wholesale disintegration of the categories of home, origin, community, belonging’.

We are seeking abstracts for chapters that address the concept of regions and the Gothic. Submissions are welcomed that address the historic specificities of regional difference and Gothic traditions, as well as inter-disciplinary studies and contemporary imaginings of the regions and the Gothic.
Topics may include (but are not bound by):
  • Welsh/Scottish/Irish Gothic
  • Nationalism
  • Cornish or Northern Gothic
  • Peripheralism
  • Gothic of the Islands
  • Dark Tourism
  • Queer identities in the regions
  • Urban Gothic
  • Ethnicity and the regions
  • Village Gothic
  • Gender and regionalism
  • Suburban Gothic

Please send 300 word abstracts by 1st December 2014 to William Hughes and Ruth Heholt: w.hughes@bathspa.ac.uk and ruth.heholt@falmouth.ac.uk .
Completed essays of approximately 6000 words will be required by September 2015.

via Univ of Pennsylvania, Department of English

CfP: The Material Culture of Magic

"The Material Culture of Magic"

Book project, ed. by Dr Antje Bosselmann-Ruickbie and Dr Leo Ruickbie

Magic is a wide field of research comprising what we might call the occult, paranormal events, anomalous experience, spirituality and other phenomena throughout human history. However, research has often been focused more narrowly on the historical analysis of written sources, or the anthropology and occasionally sociology of practitioners and their communities, for example. What is often overlooked are the physical artefacts of magic themselves.
In all areas of research, ‘material culture’ is becoming increasingly important – the ‘material turn’ as it has been labelled. This is particularly the case for disciplines that traditionally have not focused on object studies but on theory such as historical or social sciences. However, it is self-evident that the objects emerging from a culture provide valuable information on societies and their history. This is also and particularly the case for magic and related phenomena. Magic, especially, became divorced from its concrete expressions as academic study focused on problems of rationality and functionalist explanation.
When studying magic it is crucial to look at the objects that have been produced and what purpose they had, who made them and in what period, whether they represent only a certain historical period or are a long-lasting phenomenon, etc. This volume hence aims to ‘re-materialise’ magic, to re-anchor it in the physical things that constitute ‘magic’ and recover the social lives, even biographies, of these things.
The envisaged academic book aims to cover a wide range of subjects, periods, geographical areas, as well as methods: firstly, because an interdisciplinary approach is essential to adequately encompass the subject; secondly, to investigate whether similar objects were used in different cultures in parallel or over a long period; and thirdly, to serve as a starting point for future research. This will be the first book on the material culture of magic and consequently has the potential to become a foundational text.