The Twenty-Fourth International Hardy Conference marks the 180th anniversary of Thomas Hardy’s birth. Paper proposals are welcome on any aspect of Hardy’s life, work and legacy. Papers should be planned for delivery times of a maximum of 20 minutes (approximately 2000 words).

Like its predecessors, the 2020 Conference is designed to appeal to new, established and independent Hardy scholars, and the general readers who attend in large numbers.  We invite proposals from established and independent scholars, postgraduate students, and Hardy enthusiasts—especially those from the international community. Postgraduate students may be eligible for bursaries to help defray conference expenses.

Confirmed lecturers include Gillian Beer, Pamela Gilbert, Michael Irwin, Richard Nemesvari and Gregory Tate. Lectures and conference papers will be supplemented by a wide variety of excursions and entertainments relating to the local context which Hardy’s work celebrates, and from which it emerged.

Proposals (max. 300 words) should be sent by email to Dr Mary Rimmer at or by post to:                                                         

‘Call for Papers’
(Thomas Hardy Conference and Festival)
Dr Mary Rimmer, Department of English
University of New Brunswick
P.O. Box 4400
Fredericton, NB, Canada  E3B 5A3

All submissions will be read and adjudicated by an academic panel.  The closing date is 15 January 2020. The best of the papers given at the Conference will be considered for publication in the peer-reviewed Thomas Hardy Journal appearing in Autumn 2020.

Please note that all submissions will be acknowledged: if email submissions are not acknowledged within four business days, the proposer should re-send.

Call for papers ESSE Conference, University of Lyon, August 2020
Victorian seminar (in collaboration with the Société Française d’Etudes Victoriennes et Edouardiennes – SFEVE)

“From Cottonopolis to the Ville Lumière of Silk: Factories, Fibres and Frameworks of Victorian Textiles”

In recent years, English Studies has been transformed by three inter-related trends; a recognition of the importance of objects (’thing’ theory), a growing awareness of workers as agents of cultural production, and a democratising aesthetic which accords greater importance to the “lesser arts”. These trends have developed our understanding of the unique role played by textiles in the construction of literature, knowledge and identity in the Victorian period.
A follow-up to the “The Finer Threads” session at the 2016 Galway ESSE conference initiated
by Rachel Dickinson and Laurence Roussillon-Constanty, this session seeks to expand the
ongoing research by mapping out the many channels through which textile and textual
exchanges circulated in Europe in the nineteenth century. It is particularly appropriate to the
ESSE conference venue as Lyon played a major role in the development of the silk industry
both domestically and internationally. Our session aims to give a sense of the multi-faceted
and complex impact of the Victorian textile industry on a cultural, social and economic level.
It explores the tensions between the textile industry as a site of modernisation, technological
innovation and economic opportunity, and a site of working-class resistance and protest against
exploitation, “white slavery” and physical harm. It also examines the wider impact of textile
production beyond the factory by providing new narratives and subject matter (objects,
machines and artefacts) for the literary and visual arts. Historical and literary or aesthetic
approaches are equally welcome and interdisciplinary approaches to the subject are strongly
This session invites papers on:
* The ambivalences of modernisation: celebrations of technological innovation and its effects
on the individual worker
* Textile production and the transformation of social and personal relationships: sexual division
of labour in the textile industry and textile communities, factory discipline and regulation,
social/cultural life in textile communities, “model” villages
* The politics of textile production: “laissez-faire”, paternalism, liberalism
* Resistance: Luddism, Trade Unionism, Chartism, Tory Radicalism, Socialism
* Global textiles: “King Cotton” and transatlantic/imperial history of cotton production,
exports/imports and international trade, British firms and European partners
* Narratives, representations/self-representations of textile workers: “White Slaves”, mill girls,
child labour
* Literary, visual and media representations of the textile industry
* The persistence of the Victorian textile industry in 21st-century culture
Individual proposals of 200-250 words should be sent to both convenors by January 15, 2020.
– Fabienne Moine, Professor of British Studies, Université Paris Est Créteil, France.
– Michael Sanders, Senior Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century Writing, University of
Manchester, UK

“Dickens: Heirs and Heirlooms”

Call for papers for the Dickens Society-sponsored seminars at ESSE 2020 (Lyon 31 August – 4 September 2020):

Full details are included below and on the Dickens Society website (, and you can find out more about the conference on the official website: 



– Emily Bell, Loughborough University (

– Georges Letissier, Université de Nantes (

– Céline Prest ( 

The 150th anniversary of Dickens’s death in 2020 offers a powerful impetus to revisit, reimagine and reinterpret the author’s relationship with legacy in his works, and the ways that legacy has been realised in heritage, literature, and new media. This series of panels will explore Dickens’s heirs and heirlooms from a diverse range of perspectives. From the symbolic lost ship of Dombey and Son, the Son and Heir, to its mirroring in Dickens’s use of the phrase to describe his eldest son Charley in his letters, heirs and heirlooms haunt Dickens’s texts and legacy in surprising ways that complicate the boundaries between life and works, and life and afterlife.

The dead’s legacy exercises its influence on the living as elusive wills, secret codicils and undecipherable echoes haunt the Dickensian text and shape the fates of the unknowing characters: what was repressed for decades eventually re-emerges to the surface, enacting what Freud will later identify as the return of the repressed. The living remain haunted by their lost ones and lost selves who are “recalled to life,” be it as ghosts (Marley in A Christmas Carol, the former Lady Dedlock in Bleak House, Redlaw in “The Haunted Man”) or reincarnated in symbolic doubles (Clara Copperfield as Dora Spenlow in David Copperfield, Esther Summerson as Honoria Barbary in Bleak House).

Heirs may also be granted a new lease on life through the Dickensian afterlife, which has become a subcategory of the thriving Neo-Victorian production. Transposed in new contexts, famous characters such as Miss Havisham (Carol Ann Duffy, Jasper Fforde, Roe) or Magwitch (Peter Carey) serve as triggers to address contemporary issues on gender, postcolonial identity formation or intergenerational trauma. Yet they also preserve something of their Dickensian origin, which testifies to the abiding persistence of the past in the present. Because Dickens was attracted to the occult and the supernatural, as witnessed by his practice of mesmerism and hypnotism, his legacy is conveyed through the immaterial and the intangible. So the Dickensian afterlife may ultimately be apprehended through such phenomena as possession and obsession, which also partake of the reading experience.           

Papers are invited on topics including (but not limited to):

●      Heirs and heirlooms within Dickens’s fiction;

●      Transmission and influence;

●      Wills, codicils and legal documents;

●      The return of the repressed;

●      Reincarnation, re-embodiment;

●      Gothic haunting and the return of the dead;

●      Dickens’s family and friends;

●      Dickens’s representation in museums;

●      Spiritual heirs to Dickens, including neo-Victorian literature and postcolonial (re)appropriation, translation and writing back;

●      Dickensian persistence.

Please submit proposals of 200-250 words to the convenors (, and by 15 January 2020. 


Empires coloniaux et cultures matérielles. Showcasing Empire

Le prochain colloque de la SFEVE se tiendra à l’Université d’Aix-Marseille du 20 au 22  février 2019 sur le thème. The next SFEVE conference will be held at the Université Aix-Marseille from 20th to 22th Februrary on the following theme.

Empires coloniaux et cultures matérielles. Showcasing Empire

Cliquez sur le titre pour lire l’appel à communication. Click on the link to access the call for contribution

Date limite/ Submission deadline: 30 septembre 2019.

Contact des organisateurs : Gilles Teulié (gilles.teulie(at) et Fanny Robles (fanny.robles(at)

Renaissance(s),Congrès SAES 2020

Atelier S.F.E.V.E. du congrès de Tours, 4 au 6 juin 2020

Voir le CFP.

Date limite: 10 novembre 2019.