Virtual Graduate Conference

“O’ you wonder!”: Worldviews in pre-1750 literature

Conference Dates and Times: 17th April, 2:30-6:30pm, 18th April 2:30pm-7:30 pm
Conference Location: Virtual
Organisers: University of Cambridge, Faculty of English
Call for Abstracts Deadline: 26th March 2021

Keynote: Dr Liza Blake, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto

The early modern period witnessed unique and rapid epistemological expansion, as the world was ‘discovered’, colonised and conceptualised. Literature became a portal by which to experience this ever-expanding world and wonder at it. Our conference brings together interdisciplinary perspectives on the worlds and wonders being written before 1750.  

We will be joined by our keynote speaker, Dr. Liza Blake, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto. She will present on her in-progress monograph Early Modern Literary Physics which examines how early modern literary authors used literary form to invent and work through a multitude of worldviews.

We invite submissions on pre-1750 literature to be presented at our virtual conference. These papers may contextualize the worldviews that animate, or give shape to, a text and its contemporary interpretations — with an eye to how these are often imbued with a sense of wonder or inspiration. Our tentative subtopics encourage submissions on worldviews concerning, but not limited to; faith and devotion; the natural world and discovery; classical and ‘foreign’ influence. We hope the variety of available responses to our theme will invite lively and cross-period discussion, and will illuminate new connections between areas of pre-1750 culture.

A 250-word abstract and 50 word biography should be submitted to by 26th March 2021. Complete presentations should not exceed 20 minutes.