Call for Papers | Difficult Women in the Long Eighteenth Century

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on June 25, 2015


Thomas Rowlandson, Breaking up of the Blue Stocking Club. Published: [London] : By Thos. Tegg, No. 111 Cheapside, [March 1, 1815?]. Lewis Walpole Library, #11823.

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From the conference website:

Difficult Women in the Long Eighteenth Century, 1680–1830
University of York, 28 November 2015

Proposals due by 1 July 2015

The long eighteenth century witnessed an age of social and political revolution which profoundly affected the way in which women occupied and contributed to the public sphere. This interdisciplinary conference looks at representations and conceptions of ‘difficult women’ from 1680 to 1830. The term ‘difficult women’ encapsulates many different female experiences and lifestyles. From religiously non-conformist women to women bearing arms, a plethora of ‘difficult women’ find representation within the British Empire. This conference welcomes abstracts and/or proposals for panels on any topic relating to ‘Difficult Women’ throughout the long eighteenth century.

Topics can include, but are not limited to
• Dissenting Women – Preaching and teaching women, women writing theological texts, Methodist, Quaker, or Moravian women
• The Politically Engaged – Women involved in revolution (Glorious, American, French), female campaigners, authors of political pamphlets, female protestors, women assisting politicians
• Sexually Non-Conformist Women – Lesbianism, cross-dressers, spinsters, prostitutes, promiscuous women
• Women of the Pen – Female philosophers, published authors, bluestockings and similar intellectual circles
• Armed, Dangerous, and Criminal – Murderesses, warriors, thieves, female prisoners, representations of armed women
• Women in Art – Representations of women in satirical prints, portraiture, depictions of the female body, female artists
• Theatrical Women – Travesty roles, gender-bending roles, breeches parts and various forms of theatrical dress, women working in theatre
• Sporting Women – Female cricketers, hunters, horse riders, boxers
• Women of the Larger British Empire – Black women, women of ethnic minorities, women of conquered territories as a form of ‘other’
• Women and Medicine – Hysteria, Melancholia and Femininity, Depictions of Childbirth, Love’s Madness, the female body, female medical practitioners, midwives

Please send abstracts/panel proposals of no more than 500 words to difficultwomenconference@gmail.com by July 1st 2015. Panel proposal submissions should include the full name, affiliation, and email addresses of all participants.

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