CFP: ‘Composition and Decomposition’, BAVS 2011

BAVS 2011, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston Campus
1-3 September
Proposals due: 31 March

To download the CFP, click here.

The University of Birmingham will be hosting the 2011 BAVS Conference, 1–3 September  2011, on the Edgbaston campus.  We invite papers that deal with the conference theme of ‘Composition and Decomposition’ in all its various connotations.

This theme reflects Birmingham’s own nineteenth-century history as the ‘workshop the world.’  Birmingham is a city intimately connected with industry and manufacture.  However, one of its main exports in the nineteenth century was pens.  Our conference thus draws on the double of meaning of composition as both artistic practice and broader industrial process.  At a time when the country as a whole, and this city in particular, is reflecting upon the legacy of industrial decline, this conference also invites speakers to think about its inverse, decomposition.

Keynote speakers include:

Dr Colin Cruise (University of Aberystwyth), author and curator of many works/exhibitions of Pre-Raphaelite art, including Love Revealed: Simeon Solomon and the Pre-Raphaelites’ (2005-6) and the current ground-breaking ‘The Poetry of Drawing: Pre-Raphaelite Designs, Studies and Watercolours’ at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, January – May 2011.

Professor Herbert Tucker, John C. Coleman Professor of Nineteenth-Century British Literature at the University of Virginia, and author of numerous works on  Victorian poetry including his recent Epic: Britain’s Heroic Muse 1790-1910 (OUP, 2008).

We invite participants to engage with the theme widely and imaginatively.  Papers might be on the following:

  • Decadence, decay and degeneration
  • Formal composition or simply of what things are made
  • Putting things together, taking things apart
  • Waste and recycling; the return of discarded things.
  • Ingredients, inventories and other types of list
  • The role of composition in the practice of fine art, music, literature and drama.
  • Architecture and town planning
  • Scientific analysis and processes
  • The material culture of composition, whether draft manuscripts, laboratory equipment, or processes of manufacture
  • Industrialization, industrial processes, and industrial cultures
  • The importance of form and formal methodologies
  • Composition and the press; printing and print culture
  • The politics of deconstruction, whether as methodology or historical event (clearances, demolition etc.).

Please send proposals (500 words max) to no later than 31 March 2011.  Please direct any queries about the conference to the organizers at the above address.

Please note that the increasing popularity of BAVS as a conference where scholars of Victorian Studies share their research means that, unfortunately, not all offers of papers can be accepted. 

The 2011 Conference hosts will select offers of papers according to the criteria of quality, engagement with the Conference theme, and with due regard to accepting papers from a spread of disciplinary areas, to support postgraduate research, and to fulfil BAVS’ commitment to interdisciplinarity.


One response to “CFP: ‘Composition and Decomposition’, BAVS 2011

  1. Pingback: CFP: Composition and Decomposition |·

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