Some conference announcements

A One-Day Conference on “Romantic Animals”
Monday, 7 July 2008
Devon and Exeter Institute, Exeter
Organised by the University of Exeter, Dept. of English
There is no fee for this conference.

Speakers are:
*Prof. Nick Groom (Exeter): “Jug Jug”
*Dr. Christine Kenyon Jones (King’s College London): “Animals and Romanticism”
*Prof. Donna Landry (Kent): “English Brutes, Eastern Enlightenment”
*Prof. David Punter (Bristol): “Imagining Animals: Romanticism from Pliny to Deleuze”
*Dr. Sharon Ruston (Keele): “‘How grossly do they insult us who thus advise us only to render ourselves gentle, domestic brutes!’: Women and Domesticated Animals in Mary Wollstonecraft’s Vindication”
*Prof. Jane Spencer (Exeter): “Animal Experience in Narrative”

This conference has no registration fee, but please complete a booking form to reserve your place. Coffee, lunch, and tea will be provided. More details will be available online.

The Devon and Exeter Institute is located in the heart of Exeter’s city centre. You may find it on Google maps:

If you have any questions, please email the conference organisers at:

‘The Representation of the Islamic World on the British and American Stage’

Prof. David Worrall, Nottingham Trent University.

Wednesday 4 June 2008, 3.30-5.

Venue:  John Rylands Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester


Time:      3.30 start (tea from 3 in the library cafe), 5pm finish, followed by drinks and dinner, ending in time for a return to most parts of England from London to Carlisle.  All welcome.

The interdisciplinary NW Long 18th Century Seminar season finishes in style on 4 June. David Worrall is a leading scholar of the romantic period and a pioneer of genuinely interdisciplinary work on theatre and society. His Radical Culture (1992) is well-known, and the years of archival work that followed have resulted in four well-reviewed recent books: Theatric revolution : drama, censorship and Romantic period subcultures, 1773-1832 (2006); Harlequin Empire: race, ethnicity and the drama of the popular Enlightenment (2007);  The Politics of Romantic Theatricality 1787-1832 (2007); and an edited book of essays, Blake, Nation and Empire (2006). His visit to Manchester is thus timely and of wide interest, especially as his paper deals with a topic with contemporary resonance, related to the subjects explored in Linda Colley’s recent Captives.

Synopsis. This paper will examine theatrical representations of the north African Islamic states on the British and North American stage,  c, 1794-1830. White Americans in Barbary captivity provided a contradictory moment in American history; not only an experience of the limits of naval power but also an exposure of contradictory ideologies of the New Republic’s natural rights and black enslavement.  Susanna Haswell Rowson’s Philadelphia Slaves in Algiers (1794), like David Everett’s Slaves in Barbary (Boston, 1817), contained fantasies of ‘regime change;’ in Newport, Rhode Island, benefit nights were performed to help ransom American slaves; in New York, Barbary pirates were exhibited in the theatre boxes; Lord Exmouth’s bombardment of Algiers in 1816 stimulated a further flurry of British dramas about Barbary.

Suggestions of papers for next year’s season are welcome.



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