Conference "The Lost Romantics" 11.05.2017 bis 14.05.2017
There have been various attempts to subject the period of Romanticism to a substantial re-mapping: the result being an extension of the traditional canon of the big six (male) Romantic poets and a (re-)discovery of numerous authors, male and female, hitherto considered to be irretrievably lost. This conference will introduce the audience to some of them.
But apart from these totally unknown Romantics mushrooming in anthologies, the Vechta conference will focus on names that both the 19th-century readership and the canonical poets were familiar with and that for inexplicable reasons have fallen into oblivion. Biographies such as Richard Holmes's two-volume book on Coleridge, Early Visions (1989) and Dark Reflections (1998), underline that Coleridge was well-acquainted with and often inspired by poets such as Samuel Palmer, Samuel Rogers and Charles Lamb, three writers who are nowadays only known to a small circle of connoisseurs and who are remembered as being tangential to the careers of other Romantics. Among the questions that this conference will address is that of what happened to these poets, what caused them to be relegated to the footnotes of literary histories and what made them so important to the canonical writers.
The conference will also deal with famous ‘one-hit wonders’, well-known writers and poets who, in the eyes of modern criticism, are now reduced to just one major work. Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein (1818) has found its way on to many university reading lists, but her novels such as Valperga, Mathilda, Lodore or Falkner are still Romantic terrae incognitae that have not been sufficiently explored. The same is true of writers such as Matthew Gregory Lewis, who is only remembered for his sensational novel The Monk, but whose dramatic works The Castle Spectre, The Bravo of Venice or Adelgitha are completely forgotten and scarcely worth a fleeting reference in recent studies on Romantic drama. This list could (and, to a certain extent, will) be extended and should certainly comprise authors such as John Polidori, Thomas Lovell Beddoes and many others.
Confirmed keynote speakers are: Fred Burwick (UC Los Angeles), Michael O'Neill (Durham), Fiona Stafford (Somerville College, Oxford), Tom Mole (Edinburgh), Richard Marggraf Turley (Aberystwyth), Richard C. Sha (American University) and Lilla Crisafulli (Bologna).
Further information and registration: https://lostromantics2017.wordpress.com/