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News and Announcements: Calls for Papers

CfP: Transience, Garbage, Excess, Loss: The Ephemeral, 1500–1800

Thursday, October 13, 2016   (0 Comments)

The Early Modern Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara is pleased to announce our Spring 2017 conference on The Ephemeral in early modernity. We invite presenters to interpret our theme widely so as to provoke as many exciting discussions as possible. Please see the details below, and don't hesitate to contact us off-list with any questions or comments!

Transience, Garbage, Excess, Loss: The Ephemeral, 1500–1800
University of California, Santa Barbara
Conference Date: April 21–22, 2017
Abstracts Due: December 15, 2016

The Early Modern Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara invites proposals for our annual conference, “Transience, Garbage, Excess, Loss: The Ephemeral, 1500–1800,” to be held on April 21 and 22, 2017. We are happy to announce our two keynote speakers: Elizabeth Heckendorn Cook (UC, Santa Barbara) and Jonathan Goldberg (Emory). We invite presentations that connect broadly to our theme of ephemerality in early modernity. With the present rise of ephemera studies, we hope to investigate the limits, depths, and abilities of the ephemeral as it may pertain to literature, art, music, history, religion, philosophy, or other fields of inquiry. How is the ephemeral intimately connected to our study of early modernity? And what is at stake in plumbing what is, by definition, “short-lived” or “transitory”? Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Im/permanence; im/materiality
  • Sanitation, disease, sickness, plague, sewage or early modern plumbing
  • Trash or the trashy
  • Fragility or frailty
  • Excessive femininity, sensibility, or emotional states
  • Social production, overpopulation, over crowding
  • Scavengers, pests, pestilence
  • Food, consumption, intoxication
  • Scarcity vs. plenty
  • The exile, itinerant, or transient
  • The pilgrim or pilgrimage
  • Textuality; the ephemerality of print
  • Art, artistry, or ornamentation
  • The object vs the subject
  • The transatlantic
  • Environmental stakes
We invite abstracts of 300 words or less and a 1-page CV to be sent to by December 15, 2016. In the spirit of the ephemeral, we envision both traditional conference presentations and also roundtables that engage with panelists, respondents, and audience. Please feel free to contact the conference organizer, Jeremy Chow, at with any questions you may have.


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