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Literature CfPs for RSA 2019 Toronto
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This blog is for CfPs for sessions in literature for RSA 2019 Toronto. Members may post CfPs here: sign in to RSA and select "add new post" to do so. Your post should include a title, and the CfP itself should be no longer than 250 words. Adding tags (key words) to your post will help others find your CfP. Make sure the CfP includes the organizer's name, email address or mail-to link for email address, and a deadline for proposals. Non-members may email to post a CfP. Please use the email address of the session organizer posted in the CfP to submit a paper proposal. CfPs are posted in order of receipt, with the newest postings appearing at the top of the blog. Members may subscribe to the blog to be notified when new CfPs are posted: click on the word Subscribe next to the green checkmark above.


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Top tags: Literature  early modern  gender  book history  Poetry  material culture  print culture  Renaissance literature  drama  Iberian Peninsula  identity  women  epic poetry  history of reading  printers  reception history  religion  archival research  art history  catholic reform  classical literature  classical reception  colonial Latin America  cultural history  devotional  digital humanities  history of the book  interdisciplinary  Italian literature  Italy 

Fraud, Mockery, Jest, and Cony-Catching in the Early Modern Period

Posted By Ani Govjian, Friday, July 20, 2018

Fraud, Mockery, Jest, and Cony-Catching in the Early Modern Period

To what extent is a jest also a lie? Are frauds funny? Taking a cue from “mockery” as mimic, sham, and spoof, this panel is interested in the ways fraud, imposture, and deceit function as ludic entertainment – whether intentionally or as byproduct.

This panel invites submissions that consider the jocularity of fraud, counterfeit, trickery, disguise, quackery, and cozenage. Papers are welcome to explore the theme in regards to:

-  Material culture including trick objects like blow books, mock almanacs, or fraudulent copies of famous works

Gendered experiences of deception or artifice

-  Jestbooks, ludic ballads, mock pamphlets

-  Mountebanks, street performers, gambling games, and pick-pockets

Medicine, especially the preoccupation with quack physicians

Natural philosophy and debates pushing back against charges of superstition

-  Magic, either through a focus on prestidigitation or representations and discussions of witchcraft



Religious debates including displays of anti-Catholic sentiment and fears as well as fetishizations of “Popery”

-  Theatre, stagecraft, and/or anti-theatrical sentiment


Proposals should be for 20-minute papers, and should include:

    title for the paper

    abstract of 150 words

    1-page CV

    current contact information

    A/V requirements


Submit proposals to by Friday, August 10, 2018. Subject line: “RSA – Fraud and Mockery.”


Tags:  allegory  archival research  book history  drama  early modern  English literature  gender  interdisciplinary  literature  manuscript  material culture  mimesis  Poetry  popular culture  print culture  recipe books  religious  Renaissance literature  Renaissance studies  reproductive prints  truth 


In Search of the Canon: Poets and Artists Confronting with their Models (c. 1500-1700)

Posted By Maria G. Matarazzo, Thursday, July 19, 2018

The theory of Imitation was a central topic of discussion in the ‘Republic of Letters’. The European community of humanists, philosophers, poets and artists was engaged in the dispute over the models to refer to during the creative process. How to develop a normative canon as a reference point for artists and writers in the practice of Imitation? Which poets and artists to select as the examples of ‘bello stile’?

While the authority of ancient models was universally acknowledged, the building of a canon of modern masters was under discussion. One of the typical environments of this discussion were the Academies, where writers, artists, philosophers, antiquarians gathered around learned patrons.

Considering the interdisciplinary nature of this debate, this panel aims to explore the construction of a canon through a comparative and interdisciplinary perspective. The main purpose is not only to study the mechanisms implied in the building of the canon but also to bring out the intersections between Art and Literature concerning this topic.

Questions to be considered include but are not limited to: the institutions where the debate took place, with a particular focus on the Academies; rhetorical devices for debating the canon and the metaphors of Imitation; the circulation of the canon through publishing, printings, new editions and reproductive printmaking; the impact of the canon on the teaching practices.


Please submit proposals to Ida Duretto ( and Maria Gabriella Matarazzo ( by August 12, 2018.

Proposals should include a paper title, an abstract (150-word maximum), keywords and a CV (300-word maximum).

Tags:  academies  Art History  book history  cultural history  early modern  history of reading  history of the book  Imitation  interdisciplinary  literature  mimesis  patronage  philology  Poetry  print culture  publishers  reproductive prints  the canon  visual arts 

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CfP: Beyond the Microcosm: The Impact of Confraternities on the Civic Sphere.

Posted By Samantha J. Hughes-Johnson, Friday, July 13, 2018


(Deadline: 1 August 2018)


The Society for Confraternity Studies will sponsor a number of sessions at the 65th Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America (17 - 19 March 2019) in Toronto, Canada. Accordingly, it invites proposals for papers on the following theme:


Beyond the Microcosm: The Impact of Confraternities on the Civic Sphere.


Since the formation of the Society for Confraternity Studies, which celebrates it 30th anniversary in 2019, the subject of Confraternity Studies has moved on from what Konrad Eisenbichler once described as an “invisible history” to become an authoritative sub-field of late medieval and early modern scholarship. Accordingly, in order to encourage a discourse that places confraternities at the center of essential historical developments rather than at their periphery, we invite proposals for papers that explore the amplitude and impact of lay sodalities in Europe, the Americas, the East and Asia in relation to the activities of wider late medieval and early modern society. Papers might focus on, but are not limited to the following topics:

·     The reach and range of lesser traversed sodalities. For example, slave confraternities.

·     The relationships between lay companies and non members. For instance, confraternal liaisons with artisans, food merchants or second-hand clothes sellers.

·     Confratelli and consorelle entrusted with public service, healthcare and the custody of people or objects.

·     The influence of confraternal ritual and recreation on urban spaces.

·     Individual and familial investment in lay companies in order to garner social influence or to gain political power.

·     Associations between the devotional lives of non-clerics and the ordained: how these affinities played out in rituals, drama and music.

·     The impact of art, architecture and ephemera commissioned by confraternities on public spaces and/or the popular conscience.

Papers should concentrate on confraternal activities between 1300 and 1700. We are however, also particularly interested in proposals that discuss retrospectively, the value of studies that have emerged since the conference in 1989 and consider how Confraternity Studies will advance into the twenty-first century.

Proposals should include the presenter’s name, academic affiliation, email, the paper title (no longer than 15 words), the abstract of the paper (no longer than 150 words), a brief academic C.V. (not longer than 300 words), and a series of key-words that suit the presentation. Please be sure all nine (7) categories of information are clearly provided. 

Please submit your proposal to Dr Samantha J.C. Hughes-Johnson at by 1 August 2018.


Tags:  confraternity  drama  lay company  music  poetry  ritual  sodality 

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Imaginative Intersections between Writers and Artists in the Seventeenth Century: New Thoughts on an Old Theme

Posted By Alexandra C. Hoare, Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The fertile intersections between literature and the visual arts in the seventeenth century, which impact upon and give unique shape to the creative outputs of that historical moment, have received a wealth of scholarly attention over the decades. This phenomenon continues to compel and to generate important, fruitful and even ground-breaking discussion within the various disciplines concerned with the literary and the visual/artistic, either by inflecting or overturning long-standing assumptions about the nature of that relationship or by building significantly upon the extant repertoire of topics with which we have become so familiar (among these the ‘ut pictura poesis’ theme). This panel invites papers that contribute meaningfully to this ongoing discussion by seeking to significantly expand, nuance or problematize extant narratives of the ‘text-image’ relationship within the seventeenth century, broadly conceived and approached from diverse disciplinary perspectives. Papers might address one of the following topics:

- new forms of artistic iconography or style that find a basis in contemporary texts

- a consideration of previously neglected or understudied protagonists in artistic and/or literary fields

- overlooked contexts of literary engagement on the part of artists

- the concept of authorship, within the context of seventeenth-century literary and/or artistic practice and theory

- the impact on artistic production of as-yet unknown or alternative forms of text or writing

- relationships between text and image in the context of previously under-researched or new media, in either visual/artistic or literary fields

- text-image connections that appear within new cultural or geographic contexts of creative production in the period

Proposals should include the presenter’s name, academic affiliation, email address, paper title (15 words maximum), abstract (150 words maximum), PhD completion date, and CV (300 words maximum). Please submit proposals by July 30th to Carlo Avilio ( and Alex Hoare (

Tags:  art  image  literature  poetry  seventeenth century  text 

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"Poco sufficienti a poterli intendere": Auto-Commentary and Self-Exegesis in Early Modern Italy

Posted By Francesco Marco Aresu, Monday, July 2, 2018
Updated: Monday, July 2, 2018

This session aims to prompt critical reflection on early-modern forms of auto-commentary and self-exegesis as they appear in Italian literature in various textual and material forms. Ranging from Dante’s foundational experiments in authorial (and authoritative) hermeneutics to Lorenzo’s Comento de’ miei sonetti, these forms include extended commentaries accompanying the text (Dante’s quasi comento in the Convivio), marginal and interlinear glosses (Petrarca’s annotations to his drafts, Boccaccio’s edition of the Teseida), forewords, and afterwords, as well as connective sections that discuss the work of which they are a paratext (Boccaccio’s poetics discourse in the framework of the Decameron), and autonomous texts materially appended to the work they comment on or circulating separately (Dante’s disputed epistle to Can Grande). Furthermore, self-exegetical practices may vary in pragmatics: they can provide a genetic narrative or re-semantization of texts (Dante’s ragioni in the Vita Nova), offer an allegorical interpretation (Dante’s divisioni), clarify obscure passages (Campanella’s apparatus to his poetic anthology), engage in literary polemics, or extend apologetic or palinodic remarks (Tasso’s Lettere on the poetics of his works). Above all, these such auto-commentative practices represent the authors’ attempt to condition the reception of their work beyond their own Barthesian death. In this session, we look at the auto-commentary as an intersection of physical, rhetorical, and intellectual elements. We solicit philological and hermeneutical inquiries, and welcome theoretical and historical approaches as well as projects that are comparative and multilingual.


Please send title, abstract, and bio to Beatrice Arduini ( or Francesco Marco Aresu ( by 07/31.

Tags:  Authoriality  Authorship  Auto-Commentary  Boccaccio  Dante  Exegesis  Hermeneutics  Italian Literature  Italian Renaissance  Literary Criticism  Lorenzo de' Medici  Manuscript Culture  Materiality  Paratext  Petrarch  Philology  Poetics  Poetry  Reception  Tasso 

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Ercilla’s "La Araucana" at 450 (1569-2019)

Posted By Miguel Martínez, Monday, July 2, 2018
Updated: Monday, July 2, 2018
2019 marks the 450th anniversary of the publication of the first installment of Alonso de Ercilla’s "La Araucana" in 1569, a watershed moment in the history of Spanish and Latin American poetry. Throughout the years, the poem has always been the subject of intense scholarly dispute over its aesthetic and ideological stakes, and it has never ceased to grasp the imagination of readers and poets alike. This panel aims at foregrounding new scholarship on La Araucana. Proposals on all topics and from all approaches are welcome, whether engaging with the text in its immediate historical context or with the epic’s enduring post-Renaissance afterlives.
Please send a title (15-word maximum), an abstract (150-word maximum), and a short CV to Miguel Martínez ( by August 1st, 2018.

Tags:  colonial Latin America  epic poetry  Iberian Peninsula  poetry  reception studies 

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Devotional Materiality in Early Modern England

Posted By Jantina Ellens, Saturday, June 30, 2018

Seeking papers to complete a panel on material manifestations of Protestant faith in early modern England to be presented at the annual meeting of the Renaissance Society of America, Toronto, March 17-19, 2019.

This panel considers how Protestant worship practices are tied to the material world. How do the physical qualities of worship influence the stereotypically “cerebral” qualities of the Protestant faith? How is the divide between public and private worship complicated by the physicality of devotion? Panelists might approach these questions by considering how Protestant devotional practices involve the body or what role texts play balancing the spiritual and the physical in Protestant devotion? They might also consider:

  • Descriptions of protestant devotional practices

  • The physicality of liturgies and/or devotional texts

  • Calvinist materiality

  • The gendering of devotional practices

Please email paper proposals, including a title and abstract of 100-150 words, as well as a one page CV (300 words) to Jantina Ellens ( by Sunday, July 8, 2018.

Tags:  bodies  body  book history  Calvinism  catholic reform  classical literature  devotion  devotional  early modern  gender  gender studies  identity  literature  material culture  poetry  religion  religious  religious poetry  Renaissance literature  women 

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The Question of Truth in Renaissance Sacred Poetry

Posted By Francesco Brenna, Saturday, June 30, 2018
Updated: Sunday, July 1, 2018

How do the questions debated in Renaissance poetics-truth, verisimilitude, imitation, the universality of poetry vs. the particulars of history, poetry as a useful lie, allegory-change when the subject matter is sacred? What do we make of the gap between this type of theoretical reflection, articulated in Aristotelian and Horatian terms, and a Christian type of poetry? Which problems does the status of the poetic text present when the object of poetry is revealed truth? What is the relationship between poetry and the text of the Bible? To answer these questions, this panel invites papers on sacred and biblical epics, devotional and hagiographical poems, dramas, verse paraphrases of the Bible, and religious poetry in general from across Europe. Papers on the Italian and English Renaissance are particularly welcome, as well as papers reflecting on the difference between poets writing in Reformed countries and poets writing in Catholic and Counter-Reformation countries.

Please send paper proposals to Francesco Brenna ( by July 14th, including:
- paper title (15-word maximum)
- abstract (150-word maximum)
- curriculum vitae (.pdf or .doc)
- PhD completion date (past or expected)
- full name, current affiliation, and email address.

Tags:  Adam  allegory  Andreini  Bible  Cowley  Davenant  devotional  epic  Erasmo da Valvasone  Eve  false  God.  hagiographical  Milton  poetry  religious  sacred  Sannazaro  Satan  Scripture  Tasso  truth  verisimilar  Vida 

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CfP: Hero and Antihero in Renaissance Literature

Posted By Marcello Sabbatino, Monday, June 18, 2018

Since ancient times heroes cross the immense lands of literature. From place to place famous poets narrated actions and passions of heroes, holding them up to us. The figure of hero has never left literature. It goes through centuries and several literary genres. Although in the collective consciousness the word ‘hero’ has always been connected with courage, fortitude, force, justice, wisdom and other chivalric virtues, during the Renaissance the image of hero changed, assuming new aspects. The Renaissance revalued the study of human beings. In fact, as reason illuminated the complexity of the human spirit, heroes displayed their murky side. Such figures as Tancredi and Orlando arose and showed the deep contradictions of everyone. The Renaissance hero is no longer different from other people by nature but only by degree. This is immediately clear if we compare Renaissance hero to great Homer’s characters. The passions that move Homer’s heroes and more generally Medieval heroes, are very powerful, but they are simple and erupt quickly. On the other hand, even Ariosto and Tasso felt the intricacy of their hearts and described it in their poems.

This panel aims to investigate the changes that occurred in the figure of the hero and his/her fvalues. We invite proposals for papers, in English or Italian, on the base of, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • the changes in epic form;
  • the values and disvalues of hero or antihero;
  • the chivalric virtues;
  • how Renaissance culture influenced a new concept of hero;
  • the concept of hero in the collective imagination;
  • the expectations of the reader or audience.

Please send a 250-word abstract, a short bio, a CV and a request for audio-visual equipment to: Vincenzo Caputo ( and Marcello Sabbatino ( by 1 Augustt 2018.

Session Chairs: Vincenzo Caputo, University of Studies of Naples Federico II, and Marcello Sabbatino, University of Studies of Pisa.

Tags:  epic poetry  hero  literature  poetry  renaissance culture  virtue 

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Manuscript Lyric

Posted By Jaime L. Goodrich, Tuesday, June 5, 2018

The Renaissance English Text Society invites papers on "Manuscript Lyric" for the 2019 annual meeting of the Renaissance Society of America in Toronto.  The topic is purposely open-ended in order to encourage a range of approaches to the early modern circulation of lyric poetry in manuscript.  In keeping with the Renaissance English Text Society's mission to publish editions of early modern texts, papers that emphasize editing, textual criticism, history of the book, or circulation networks are especially welcome.


Anyone interested in submitting a proposal for this panel should send a 150-word abstract and a CV to Mary Ellen Lamb ( and Jaime Goodrich ( by 1 July 2018.

Tags:  book history  circulation  editing  lyric  manuscript  networks  poetry  textual criticism 

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