Tag Archives: edwardian conference

Beyond the Garden Party: Conference Poster


As you are no doubt aware, registration is now open for our inaugural conference ‘Beyond the Garden Party: Re-thinking Edwardian Culture’ – and costs only £10 (something of a bargain, we think, for two days’ worth of exciting Edwardian scholarship). The image above is our conference poster: please feel free to download and distribute!

More information on the conference will follow shortly.

CFP: Maverick Voices and Modernity

‘We Speak a Different Tongue’: Maverick Voices and Modernity

International Conference, St. John’s College, Durham University, UK, 5-6 July 2013

Plenary speakers: Professor Chris Baldick (Goldsmiths College, University of London) and Professor Michael O’Neill (Durham University)

With a focus on the fiction, poetry, and drama of the period 1890-1939, “Maverick Voices” registers the diversity of innovation beyond the traditionally defined boundaries of literary Modernism. Famously in “Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown” (1924), Virginia Woolf distinguishes between two literary camps: the Edwardians and the Georgians. By praising the Georgians and vilifying the Edwardians, Woolf privileges an aesthetic of what later became identified as Modernism against a continuing tradition of realism. This is indicative of both continuities and discontinuities – between Modernism and, in Yeats’s phrase, those different tongues of nineteenth-century sensibilities – which have prevailed as a persistent presence in much recent literary criticism.

“Maverick Voices” contributes to current debates about where the boundaries of literary Modernism should be drawn. Continue reading

CFP: Art, Anxiety and Protest in the Edwardian Belle Époque

‘Study of a Girl’ c.1910 by Maxwell Gordon Lightfoot

Call for Papers: Art, Anxiety, and Protest in the Edwardian Belle Époque; Graduate Student Symposium, Saturday, March 2, 2013
Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Connecticut

The belle époque, the long summer garden party of the Edwardian afternoon, when there was a lightness in the air, when “the fruit was ripe and we were eating it”; all that was a class-based, wishful misremembering across the chasm of 1914–18. — Lisa Tickner, The Spectacle of Women: Imagery of the Suffrage Campaign, 1907–14

In retrospect it may seem a belle époque, but no époque is altogether belle to those who are living through it, and the Edwardian period shares our century’s right to appropriate Auden’s phrase, “The Age of Anxiety.” —Samuel Hynes, The Edwardian Turn of Mind

This one-day graduate student symposium considers the visual arts in Britain and its empire, America, and Continental Europe between 1901 and 1910—the era marked out by the reign of the British monarch Edward VII—in relationship to the intersecting social, economic, sexual, political, and psychological tensions and anxieties of the period.

The opening decade of the twentieth century is still often perceived as a golden age of luxury, glamour, and relative social stability, before the cataclysm of World War I. The historian George Dangerfield, investigating the “strange death of liberal England,” conversely argued in 1935 that it was also a period of crisis that saw, inter alia, an upsurge in militant trade unionism, the agitation for women’s suffrage, the origins of fascism, impending constitutional crisis, and imperial unrest. Similar tensions were felt across Europe and the Americas during this transitional period. Continue reading

Call for Papers: Beyond the Garden Party: Re-thinking Edwardian Culture

Spencer Gore, ‘The Garden Path’, c.1910

CALL FOR PAPERS: Beyond the Garden Party: Re-thinking Edwardian Culture

It must have seemed like a long garden party on a golden afternoon – to those who were inside the garden. But a great deal that was important was going on outside the garden: it was out there that the twentieth-century world was being made. Nostalgia is a pleasing emotion, but it is also a simplifying one; to think of Edwardian England as a peaceful, opulent world before the flood is to misread the age and to misunderstand the changes that were dramatized by the First World War (Samuel Hynes, The Edwardian Turn of Mind).

More than forty years since Samuel Hynes wrote these words, many accounts and representations of Edwardian England still invoke the image of the garden party. Building on recent critical reappraisals, such as The Edwardian Sense (Yale 2010), and coinciding with the major Edwardian exhibition at the Yale Center for British Art, this interdisciplinary conference seeks to examine this notion, and to explore the alternatives. Was there such a thing as a distinct Edwardian culture; if so, what were the forces behind it?

We invite papers on any aspect of British culture between the years 1895-1914 (the ‘long Edwardian’ era). Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following:

• Edwardian Media: art, communication technologies, design, fashion, fiction, film, music, poetry, religion, theatre, and other forms of ‘high’ and ‘popular’ culture.
• Categorising the Edwardians: Victorianism/Edwardianism/Modernism/pre- and post-War/fin de siècle/the turn of the century. How useful is the term ‘Edwardian’?
• Revisionary Edwardians: challenging conventional notions of Edwardian writers, artists, and thinkers; fresh perspectives on famous Edwardians, and critical recoveries of neglected figures.
• Eclectic Edwardians: the catholicity of Edwardian taste and cultural products, the genre-hopping of Edwardian writers and artists, and Edwardian interdisciplinarity.
• Edwardian Afterlives: Edwardian nostalgia, Edwardian cultural afterlives, twenty-first-century visions of the Edwardians.
• The past and future of Edwardian studies; teaching the Edwardians.

‘Beyond the Garden Party: Re-thinking Edwardian Culture’ is the inaugural conference of the Edwardian Culture Network. The two-day conference will be joint-hosted by the Universities of York and Durham on 12th-13th April 2013. Speakers will be asked to state in which city they would prefer to give their paper.

Please send 300 word abstracts to edwardianculture@hotmail.co.uk by no later than Monday 3rd December 2012.