Poems and Ballads 150th Anniversary Conference



Cambridge, 29-30 July 2016

On the 150th anniversary of the publication of Algernon Charles Swinburne’s seminal collection, the _Poems and Ballads_ of 1866, an international conference will be held at  St John’s College, Cambridge.

The full CONFERENCE PROGRAMME is now online at the conference webpage:


C19 Seminar – 11 May – Dino Felluga

The second Nineteenth-Century Graduate Seminar of this term  will take place *TOMORROW*, Wednesday 11 May at 5pm, in SR-24 (please note change of day and room). Our speaker this week is Professor Dino Felluga, Purdue University, USA, who will be giving a paper entitled ‘The Problem of Form, and the New Formalism’. All very welcome.

Professor Felluga has written extensively on nineteenth-century poetry and critical theory. He is the author of *The Perversity of Poetry: Romantic Ideology and the Popular Male Poet of Genius* (2005) and *Critical Theory: The Key Concepts* (2014), and he is the co-editor of Blackwell’s *Encyclopaedia of Victorian Literature* (2015). He is currently working on
a book project entitled *Byron and the Constitution of the British Novel*.

19thC Graduate Seminar – 1 March – Emily Rohrbach, ‘The Time of Reading’

You are warmly invited to the final meeting this term of the 19th century seminar, on Tuesday 1st March, at 5.15pm in the English Faculty Board Room. Dr Emily Rohrbach (Manchester) will be speaking on ’The Time of Reading’: please see the abstract below. We also encourage anyone
interested in romanticism and/or poetics to join us, both for the paper and in the Granta afterwards as we continue our discussions informally.

‘The Time of Reading’

Concerning nineteenth-century narratives in particular, Peter Brooks claimed that ‘we would do best to speak of the anticipation of retrospection as our chief tool in making sense of narrative, the master trope of its strange logic’. This paper will explore the question of whether this ‘strange logic’ opens up or closes off a reader’s capacity to imagine that things (events, social relations, etc.) could have been other than how they end up. Reading key moments in several
works–Austen’s Persuasion and Emma, Dickens’ Great Expectations, and Nabokov’s Speak, Memory–whose protagonists themselves think in the temporality of narrative, I will ask how foregone their narrative outcomes are and what narrative strategies appear that help us imagine things otherwise.

Dr Emily Rohrbach is Lecturer in British Literature 1750-1820 at the University of Manchester, and the author of /Modernity’s Mist: British Romanticism and the Poetics of Anticipation/:


Nineteenth Century Graduate Seminar – 2 Feb

For the next meeting of the Nineteenth Century Graduate Seminar (on 2nd Feb at 5.15pm) — our designated ‘reading week’ — we will be discussing an article by Charles LaPorte: ‘Victorian Literature, Religion, and Secularisation’, Literature Compass, 10 (March 2013), pp. 277-287.

Everyone is warmly invited to attend and to contribute.

Nineteenth-Century Graduate Workshop, 26 Jan: Oliver Goldstein, ‘Thomas Hardy reads Algernon Charles Swinburne: “Dead shalt thou lie”‘

The Nineteenth-Century Graduate Workshop will hold its first session of term next Tuesday, 26 January, between 1pm and 2pm in SR-14, where Oliver Goldstein will be delivering a talk entitled ‘Thomas Hardy reads Algernon Charles Swinburne: “Dead shalt thou lie”’.

The Nineteenth-Century Graduate Workshop provides a forum for graduate students to deliver, discuss and receive feedback on their on-going research. We welcome papers on all aspects of long-nineteenth-century literature (from c. 1790 to 1914), and are open to the many diverse
approaches involved in its study. Submissions are particularly encouraged from graduates in English; however, papers on history, philosophy, art, music, theology and related areas of nineteenth-century studies are gladly received.

Papers are c. 20 minutes in length, and offer opportunities to present work in progress to an interested audience. Each paper is followed by 15 to 20 minutes of constructive questions and informal discussion.


Anna Nickerson (Girton College) and Michael Sullivan (Trinity College)

*CFP: Poems and Ballads 150th Anniversary Conference, 29-30 July 2016*

‘A poet for poetic students’

On the 150th anniversary of the publication of Algernon Charles Swinburne’s seminal collection, the Poems and Ballads of 1866, an international conference will be held at  St John’s College, Cambridge.

By focusing on Swinburne’s most notorious work, we aim to foster new ways of thinking about the significance of this collection to the development of English poetry during a period of staggering formal experimentation.

The conference will particularly seek to address questions of form, style, genre and technique, which continue to provoke and inspire readers, scholars and poets.


Herbert Tucker (University of Virginia)

Second plenary speaker to be confirmed


Laura Kilbride (Peterhouse, Cambridge)

Orla Polten (St John’s College, Cambridge)

Alex Wong (St John’s College, Cambridge)