American Literature

at Cambridge

Category: Uncategorized

American Literature Symposium: “American Stuff”

Saturday 14 May, 2016
GR06/7, Faculty of English, 9 West Road, Cambridge

Keynotes: David Brauner (Reading), Pamela Thurschwell (Sussex)

Defending his unadorned, realist style, William Dean Howells remarked in a 1903 letter to Charles Norton: ‘I am not sorry for having wrought in common, crude material so much; that is the right American stuff.’ Bringing together graduate students and faculty from the University of Cambridge and beyond, this one-day symposium examines the kinds of ‘stuff’ that constitute American life, asking what role ‘common, crude material’ might play in literary and cultural history.

Twitter: @AmericanLitCam / #camamstuff

Registration is free, but places are limited. To register, please email als.cam.2016@gmail.com

PROGRAMME

08:30 – 09:15 Registration

09:15 – 10:30 Panel 1: Miniature Connections

Chair: Fiona Green (Cambridge)

Brendan Gillott (Cambridge)
American in Miniature: Models as Mereology in Charles Olson

Wen Li Toh (Cambridge)
James Merrill’s poetics of surface

Alexander Spencer (Cambridge)
Evocations of Walt Whitman in the Contemporary American Novel

10:30 – 10:45 Break

10:45 – 12:00 Panel 2: American Collections

Chair: Kristen Treen (Cambridge)

Gabrielle Linnell (Cambridge)
The ‘mazed minds’ of Anne Bradstreet

Christy Wensley (Cambridge)
From Daisy Miller to Milly Theale: the American Girl as the Stuff for James

Diarmuid Hester (Sussex)
The Stuff of Fiction: Hoarding Manhattan

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch

13:00 – 14:00 Keynote 1

David Brauner (Reading)
‘Speaking of himself in the third person’: Self-Reflexivity and Subjectivity in Saul Bellow’s Short Fiction

14:15 – 15:30 Panel 3: Grammars of Affect

Chair: Edward Allen (Cambridge)

Ryan McRae Arnold (Cambridge)
Life at the Yam Level: Race, Stuff, and the Cruelty of Optimism in Ellison’s Invisible Man

Mathilde Sergent (Cambridge)
‘Fuzzy Football’: Material Jokes in Lorrie Moore’s ‘You’re Ugly Too’

Lola Boorman (Cambridge)
The Grammatical Exercise in Lydia Davis’s Stories

15:30 – 15.45 Break

15:45 – 17:00 Panel 4: Virtually Contemporary Stuff

Chair: Kasia Boddy (Cambridge)

George Cox (Oxford)
‘…Since these were only words, they tasted like excellent dark chocolate’: Scatology, Sex, and Superficiality in the novels of Jonathan Franzen

Penny Cartwright (Cambridge)
A vast undefined anarchism: Politicizing Thomas Pynchon’s Internets in Bleeding Edge

Jurrit Daalder (Oxford)
Rough Stuff: Authorial Cruelty in the work of George Saunders

17:15 – 18:15 Keynote 2:

Pamela Thurschwell (Sussex)
The Writing on the Wall: Adolescent Futures at Centuries’ Ends (Jude the Obscure (1895), The Awkward Age (1899) and Ghost World (1997))

Migration to New Worlds Database

Mapping Migration

A collection of materials on the ‘Century of Immigration’ is now available. Collection materials include unique primary source material on the ‘Century of Immigration’ (1800-1924): a period when hundreds of thousands of migrants left their homelands in Great Britain, Ireland,mainland Europe, India, China, Japan and other Asian countries to start new lives in the United States, Canada and Australasia.Materials include unique diaries, personal letters, oral histories and journals; each narrating the intimate journeys and challenges immigrants faced when settling in foreign countries.

Transatlantic Early American Literature: 23 and 24 Feb

Americanists are warmly invited to two events with Valerie Forman (NYU)
who is currently working on a book project about trade and cultural
relations in the Caribbean, entitled 'Developing New Worlds: Property,
Freedom, and the Economics of Representation in Early Modern England and
the Caribbean.'

1) On Tues 23rd Feb at the Renaissance research workshop, Dr Forman will
be talking informally about doing interdisciplinary and trans-Atlantic
work in the 17th Century. 1-2pm , GR-03. (You are welcome to bring your
lunch).

2) On Wednesday the 24th Feb, she will be leading a reading group from
12.30-2pm at the Meeting Room in CRASSH (part of the Crossroads of
Knowledge series). The reading will consist of Thomas Southerne's
'Oroonoko' (1695) and Richard Ligon's 'A True and Exact History of the
Island of Barbados' (1657). See below for further notes on the reading
from the seminar coordinator, Rebecca Tomlin.



Notes on the Seminar Reading

The Southerne text is widely available in collections but if you can
obtain the Regents edition ed. by Novak and Rodes (1976) that would be
helpful.
I have also put a copy of the 1695 text from ECCO in to Dropbox (Warning
before printing: this document is 92 pages long).

I have put a pdf of the original Ligon text from EEBO into Dropbox
(Warning before printing: this document is 85 pages long).
There is also a modern edition edited by Karen Kupperman (Hackett,
2011).

Professor Forman would like us to look in particular at :

1) The Dedication (I have put this in Dropbox)
2) Pages from Karen Kupperman edition (2011) based on 1673 edition.
--Introduction: 1-7, 16-19
--Pages 40-1; up until the end of the paragraph started on p. 40
--Pages 51-62; (Cape Verde section); end at middle of page at St Iago
--Page 93-110 (The number and nature of the inhabitants)
--140-69 (Plantain, Banana, Pineapple, and SUGAR)


I have also put scans of these selected extracts in the Dropbox.

Please follow this link to reach the Dropbox folder:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/jjhty5i915gm9hq/AACwgWXA1wSrHXc0YMAWxjSza?dl=0

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