Wednesday: Mini-Colloquium on Masculinity (Exeter Early Modern Seminar) — POSTPONED

UPDATE — This event has been cancelled due to weather.  We hope to reschedule later in the semester.

The next Exeter Early Modern Seminar will take the form of a Mini-Colloquium on Masculinity.

Jennie Jordan (Exeter, History) will speak on “The Office of Christian Parents’: Father-Son Relationships in Seventeenth Century England’.

Karen Harvey (Sheffield) will give a paper entitled ‘A family self? Men and the eighteenth-century home’

Wednesday 4 February, 4-6pm in 417 Amory. Wine and juice will be served after the seminar.


Reading Group Regained

The next meeting of the Exeter Renaissance Reading Group will take place on Wednesday 11th of February at the usual time and place (4pm, Queen’s Postgraduate Common Room). The text will be John Milton’s Paradise Regained. The aim would be to read all four books, if possible.  Taihei Hanada has kindly offered to open the discussion with a short talk on the text, so read whatever you can – there will be plenty to talk about regardless.

The reading group welcomes 3rd year English undergraduates as well as students from History and Drama. Suggestions for future texts will be welcome.

If there is interest, the group will reconvene after the meeting for drinks at the White Hart, between 7 and 8.



School of Arts, Histories and Cultures, University of Manchester

8-9 June 2009

Keynote Speaker: Dr Anthony Bale (Birkbeck)

‡ Prayer, pilgrimage, sacrifice, private and public devotion ‡  All these might be safely thought to fall in to the category of ‘religion’. But does this category, particularly as it is understood by modern scholars, correspond with the practices and beliefs held by the premodern peoples we hope to understand? What were the roles of religion, belief and superstition in medieval cultures? This conference seeks to explore the boundaries of these categories, examining the diverse and often ambiguous ways in which religions, beliefs and superstitions become central to the ways in which peoples define and understand themselves and their communities. Moreover, what methodological presuppositions do twenty-first century medieval scholars bring to the study of religions and beliefs? What do we stand to learn from each other?

The conference committee invites proposals from postgraduate students and recent post-doctoral researchers in all disciplines working on any aspect of medieval cultures. Papers from researchers working on non-Christian cultures are particularly encouraged. Topics might include, but are not limited to:

· Religion and Morality

· The impact of religious dicta on the lives of ordinary people

· Philosophy and Political Thought

· Constructing religious ‘Others’

· Intersections of Muslim, Jewish and Christian Beliefs

· Deviance, Heresy, Magic, Popular Belief

· Literary and Material Culture

· Architecture, Sacred Space and its Uses

· Religion and Performance

Abstracts of no more than 250 words for 20 minute papers should be submitted to Kate Ash by 14 February 2009.

Published in: on January 20, 2009 at 10:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hail the Amazons of Lyme!

The inimitable Early Modern Whale has drawn attention to a too-little-known episode in southwest Civil War history, as recorded in James Strong’s Joanereidos, or, Feminine valour eminently discovered in western women, at the seige of Lyme.  The text has an interesting and scurrilous Restoration afterlife.  Visit forthwith.

Published in: on January 20, 2009 at 10:46 pm  Leave a Comment  

Plebeian Culture at Warwick: 21 February

Plebeian Cultures in Early Modern England: 35 Years after E. P. Thompson

Saturday, 21st February 2009
University of Warwick

This one-day conference will provide a forum for scholars who are using insights from social, cultural and political theory to reconstruct the experience of the common people in early modern England. Thirty-five years after E. P. Thompson published his pioneering article on ‘Patrician Society, Plebeian Culture’ in the Journal of Social History, an essay which has deeply influenced the historiography of early modern England, we aim to evaluate recent developments in the study of plebeian cultures by providing a forum for scholars and students alike to both celebrate and reflect critically upon Thompson’s legacy. Crucially, this will also provide the foundation for constructing a new framework for future research into the experience and mentalities of the common people in early modern England.

Speakers: Keith Wrightson (Yale), Bernard Capp (Warwick), Craig Muldrew (Cambridge), David Rollison (Sydney), John Walter (Essex), Phil Withington (Cambridge), Andy Wood (East Anglia) .

For more information, including a provisional programme and booking forms, see the website:
Or email Sue Dibben

Note: A limited number of postgraduate bursaries are available to cover the cost of conference fees on a first-come, first-served basis.

Published in: on January 19, 2009 at 11:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

Region, Religion and Early Modern Literature: Draft Programme + Final CFP

Region, Religion and Early Modern Literature

Institute of English Studies, University of London
Sponsored by the Society for Renaissance Studies

Thursday 2 April 2009

Keynote Speakers: Tom Healy, Willy Maley
Confirmed Speakers include: Rebecca Bailey, Francisco J. Borge, Jan Frans van Dijkhuizen, Helen Hackett

Thanks to the generous support of the Society for Renaissance Studies, a number of postgraduate travel bursaries are available for postgraduates wishing to participate in this event. Preference will be given to those postgraduates speaking at the conference; to this end, the conference organiser is republishing the CFP, and interested postgraduate students are requested to submit a proposal by 28 November 2008. Further information is available from the conference organiser.

The first decade of the twenty-first century has witnessed an explosion of interest in religious texts and communities among scholars of early modern literature. While this is in part a reaction to global politics – religious politics have been in the media spotlight for the best part of the decade – the intensity of the interest also derives from more local concerns, from a professional dissatisfaction with the failure of earlier generations of historicist critics to illuminate fully the relationship between religion and literature in the early modern period. This one-day conference aims to build on this renewed interest in early modern religion, to explore the significance of ‘regional’ religious and/or textual communities in early modern Britain and Ireland.

Conference Organiser: Dr David Coleman, School of Arts and Humanities, Nottingham Trent University, UK (


Draft Programme

9.15-9.45am Registration: venue to be confirmed

9.45-10.45 Plenary Session I:
Tom Healy (Birkbeck), ‘”My Soul’s Countryman”: Mapping Religion in England’s Long Reformation’

10.45 Coffee break

11.00-12.30pm Parallel Session I:
Region (A): Writing Ireland
Lyndsay Best (Boston College), ‘Irish Liminality, Religion, and Rebellion: “Dismantling” Shakespeare’s The Tempest’
Mark Hutchinson (Canterbury Christ Church), ‘Theology and Reform in Early Modern Ireland’
Alison Searle (Anglia Ruskin), ‘Religion, Ethnicity and Culture in James Shirley’s St. Patrick for Ireland’

Religion (A): Protestant Poetics
Jan Frans van Dijkhuizen (Leiden), ‘Pain and the Theology of Compassion in Spenser’s “Legend of Holiness” and Florio’s Montaigne’
Deirdre Serjeantson (Cambridge), ‘English Bards and Scotch Poetics: Scotland’s Literary Influence on Sixteenth-Century English Religious Verse’
Allyna Ward (Newcastle), ‘Between the Religious and the Secular: Fortuna & Early Modern Moral Philosophy’

12.30-1.30 Lunch break (own arrangements)

1.30-3.00 Parallel Session II:
Region (B): Continental Encounters
Eva Johanna Holmberg (Turku), ‘”Three Sabboths Together”: Witnessing the Ways of Worship in the Ottoman Mediterranean’
Csaba Maczelka (Szeged), ‘Zeal and Politics: An Early Quaker Visit to Austria-Hungary’
Lieke Stelling (Leiden), ‘Religious Conversion in Early Modern Drama’

Religion (B): Catholic Communities
Rebecca Bailey (Gloucester), ‘Salmacida Spolia (1640): Showcasing a Counter-Reformation Amazon, Queen Henrietta Maria’s Final Masquing Vision’
Nicole Buscemi-Garret (Stony Brook), ‘Aphra Behn’s Religious Politics: Oroonoko and “The Golden Age”‘
Helen Hackett (University College London), ‘English Catholics Looking Inward and Outward: The Writings of the Aston-Thimelby Circle’

3.00 Coffee break

3.00-4.45 Parallel Session III
Region (C): New Worlds?
Francisco J. Borge (Oviedo), ‘”Oute of Sylla into Charibdis”: Spain, Native Americans, and the Formation of England’s Religious Identity in the Early Modern Period’
Andrew Burton (Concordia), ‘The Performance of Religious Deconstruction: The Biblical and Machiavellian Moses in Christopher Marlowe’s Tamburlaine’
Boris Drenkov (Munich), ‘New Religion, New Land , New Queen: Textual/Religious Strategies in Walter Ralegh’s Discovery of Guiana’

Religion (C): Writing Religion
Carme Font Paz (Barcelona), ‘The Cry of a Virgin: Politics, Gender and Self-Representation in Seventeenth-Century Prophetic Genres’
Paul Quinn (Sussex), ‘”Bring fagots for the fire”: Bishop Bonner and the Usurpation of Stephen Gardiner in London “Dramatic” Discourse in the Caroline Period’
Kate Roddy (Trinity, Dublin), ‘”They call me (saith he) ‘Bloody Bonner’ – a vengeance on you all!”: Rewriting the Enemy in the English Martyrologies’

5.00-6.00 Plenary Session II
Willy Maley (Glasgow): ‘Milton Dressed as Lamb’

Enquiries: Jon Millington, Events Officer, Institute of English Studies, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU; tel +44 (0) 207 664 4859; Email

Published in: on January 19, 2009 at 10:59 pm  Leave a Comment  

Wednesday: McDowell on Counter-Reformation Eloquence

The first event in the 2009 Exeter Early Modern seminar series takes place Wednesday 21 January, 4-6 pm, in Amory 417. 

Nick McDowell (Department of English, University of Exeter) will speak on ‘Counter-Reformation Eloquence and the Poetics of Religious Identity in Caroline Cambridge: Richard Crashaw, John Saltmarsh, John Milton’.

Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 10:03 am  Leave a Comment  

Exeter Medieval Seminars

The Centre for Medieval Studies has announced its spring programme.  Unless specified, the seminars are held in Room MR1, Queen’s Building, Tuesdays at 4-5.30pm

All welcome – Convenor: Yolanda Plumley

3 February
Dr Angelo Mangini (Department of Modern Languages, Italian)
‘Hunting for the Fox. The Issue of Heresy in Dante’s Commedia’

17 February
Dr Flora Dennis (University of Sussex)
‘Listening to the Past: Sounds, Spaces and Objects in Late Medieval and Early Modern Italy’

Thursday 5 March – Queen’s Building Lecture Theatre 2, at 5.15pm
Professor Robert Bartlett (University of St Andrews)
‘Saint-Making in the Middle Ages’

17 March
Professor Andrew Butcher
‘Textual Production and Vernacular Behaviour in Late Medieval England’

28 April
Sjoerd Levelt (Warburg Institute, London)
‘’Writing Medieval Chronicles in the Age of Erasmus’

12 May
Naomi Howell (Centre for Medieval Studies)
‘Tombs in Twelfth-Century Romances of Antiquity: Origins, Ekphrasis, and the Other’

Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 9:21 am  Leave a Comment  

Early Modern Seminars at Reading

Spring Term Seminars

Seminars will take place on Wednesdays at 5 pm in the Seminar Room, Graduate School in Arts and Humanities, Old Whiteknights House, University of Reading. All Welcome.

Wednesday 14 January:

Prof. Susan Wiseman (Birkbeck), ‘Survival of the Pagan Dogs? Metamorphosis at the Borders of Reception’

Wednesday 28 January:

Prof. Bill Sherman (York), ‘The Beginning of “The End”: Terminal Paratext and the Birth of Print Culture’

Wednesday 11 February:

Prof. Alan Cromartie (Reading), ‘The Mind of William Laud’

Wednesday 25 February:

Dr. Mark Towsey (Liverpool), ‘Philosophically Playing the Devil: Readers’ Responses to David Hume and the Scottish Enlightenment’

Wednesday 11 March:

Prof. Stephen Taylor (Reading) and Dr. Hannah Smith (St. Hilda’s, Oxford), ‘Alexander and Hephaestion: Lord Hervey, Frederick Prince of Wales, and the royal favourite in 1730s England’.

Convener: Dr. Michelle O’Callaghan

Published in: on January 12, 2009 at 3:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Exeter Early Modern Seminar

The Spring programme for the Exeter Early Modern Seminar is listed below. It combines papers from staff and research students in History, English, Drama and Modern Languages with outside speakers. The seminar will be held on the following Wednesdays, 4-6pm, in Amory, Room 417, followed by drinks. All are welcome to attend, including undergraduates.

Wednesday 21st January, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

‘Counter-Reformation Eloquence and the Poetics of Religious Identity in Caroline Cambridge: Richard Crashaw, John Saltmarsh, John Milton’

Nick McDowell (Department of English, University of Exeter)


Wednesday 4th February, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

Mini-Colloquium on ‘Masculinity’

Jennie Jordan (History, University of Exeter and Karen Harvey (University of Sheffield)


Wednesday 18th February, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

Postgraduate Symposium Sessions on Continuity and Change; Text and Context


Wednesday 4th March, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

‘”That Clytemnesta”, “that fatall Medea”: The “detection” of Mary Queen of Scots, 1567-1587’

Cathy Shrank (University of Sheffield)


Wednesday 18th March, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

Mini Colloquium on ‘Drama and Politics in the Seventeenth Century’

Jem Bloomfield (English, University of Exeter) and Briony Frost (English, University of Exeter)


Wednesday 29th April, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

‘Early Modern French Court Ceremony: Jostling for Power at the Birth of the Dauphin in 1601′

Valerie Worth (French, University of Exeter)


Wednesday 31st May, 4.00 – 6.00 pm

‘Early Modern Political Animals’

Karen Edwards, (English, University of Exeter)

Published in: on January 12, 2009 at 3:47 pm  Leave a Comment