Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf’

One of the best things about the Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf is the warm welcome that seasoned Woolf scholars give to new voices.

Beautiful stained glass decorates the Loyola campus (photo by Kelle Mullineaux)

Beautiful stained glass that decorates the Loyola University campus (Photo by Kelle Mullineaux)

 

As a first-time presenter at the conference, the highlight of my trip to Chicago was meeting many of the scholars whose work I have studied and valued for many years.

Here are a few comments on the event from another first-time attendee:

Kelle Mullineaux from Northern Illinois University presented a talk called “Virginia Woolf: Composition Theorist: How Imagined Audiences Can Wreck a Writer” and had this to say about the conference:

“I loved the location of this year’s conference. Loyola is a gorgeous university, and staying in the dorms made it easy for me to ‘settle in’ and navigate the campus comfortably. In addition, the Woolf conference provided more than just presentations (though the presentations were excellent). I’ve never been to a conference that included a theatrical production or multimedia workshops, but the Woolf conference provided both! The coordinators did an excellent job of showcasing the diverse impact Woolf has had on the arts.”

The Loyola Campus (photo by Kelle Mullineaux)

A waterfront view of the Loyola campus (Photo by Kelle Mullineaux)

Were you a first-time attendee at this year’s Woolf Conference who would like to share your experiences? If so, contact me! Kaylee.Baucom@CSN.edu

More about this year’s Woolf conference:

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

There are mysteries to be solved in the world of Woolf. And Virginia Woolf scholars have their magnifying glasses out.

The 24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Writing the World, held in Chicago June 5-8, was the fifth I’ve attended. And, as always, what struck me most was that, as always, there are new things to learn about Woolf and her contemporaries.

Robyn Byrd of Northern Illinois University, one of the graduate assistants who helped organize the conference.

Robyn Byrd of Northern Illinois University, one of the graduate assistants who helped organize the conference and who was on hand throughout the week.

This time, the new things were steeped in mystery, mysteries that such scholars as Suzanne Bellamy of the University of Sydney, Julie Vandivere of Bloomsburg University, Susan Wegener of Southern Connecticut State University, and Denise Ayo of the University of Notre Dame are busy uncovering.

Mystery number one: Woolf’s sentences

Suzanne Bellamy, a visual artist from Australia, kicked off the mysteries as part of a panel chaired by Judith Allen titled “Propaganda, Codebreakers, and Spies.”

Bellamy, appearing remotely via video and Skype, covered the codebreaker piece of the panel in her discussion of Edith Rickert, a Chaucer scholar who had what Bellamy called “a cypher brain.” Rickert worked as a codebreaker in both world wars. She also supervised a student thesis at the University of Chicago that has prompted Bellamy to do some further sleuthing.

The 1930 thesis, written by Elizabeth McKee and titled “A Study of the Style of Mrs Virginia Woolf with Special Emphasis on her Thought Patterns,” was the first academic piece done on Woolf, as it predates Ruth Gruber‘s 1934 work, Virginia Woolf: The Will to Create as a Woman. McKee’s thesis focused on Woolf’s sentence structure. Without computers, McKee analyzed Woolf’s sentences and worked up complicated graphs that illustrated her findings. According to McKee’s research, Woolf wrote two kinds of sentences: groping sentences searching for clarity and descriptive sentences where every word has meaning.

Suzanne Bellamy via Skype with Judith Allen and Patrizia Muscogiuri

Suzanne Bellamy via Skype with Judith Allen and Patrizia Muscogiuri

Once Bellamy discovered McKee’s work, she was intrigued by the connections it helped her make between code breaking, sentence structure and modernism. But she remains mystified by the lack of available information about what McKee did after she graduated from the University of Chicago in 1930.

Bellamy continues to investigate that mystery so she can flesh out McKee’s story for her doctoral work on early textual readings of Woolf. In it, she focuses on McKee’s work and the work of three other early Woolf scholars, two Americans and two Australians.

Mystery number two: Pepita’s origins

I can’t even brush the surface of the complicated story of paternity, deception, inheritance and intrigue that Julie Vandivere presented in a panel on “Vita, Pepita and Orlando.” Vandivere took on Pepita de Oliva, grandmother of Vita Sackville-West and the subject of Vita’s book, Pepita.

In her research, Vandivere works to uncover the marital history of Pepita and the true heir to Knole House and the Sackville fortune. Along the way, documents turned up missing — destroyed or stolen by Pepita or the Sackville-Wests — no one knows, or at least, I don’t. As a result, the true story is missing as well. But Vandivere, using her language skills as a comparative literature specialist, continues working to track them down.

Mystery number three: Woolf’s anti-Semitism

Banuta Rubess of the University of Toronto presents "You're Invited: Performing 'Mrs. Dalloway'."

Banuta Rubess of the University of Toronto presents “You’re Invited: Performing ‘Mrs. Dalloway’.”

In her private writings, Woolf revealed her anti-Semitic feelings. But were her anti-Semitic scenes in The Years more of the same? Or did she purposefully create them to make her readers aware of their own biases at a time when fascism and tyranny were abroad and at home?

Susan Wegener worked to unravel that mystery in her paper, “Processing Prejudice: Writing Woolf’s Jewish World.” By doing a close reading of key scenes in The Years  traditionally seen as anti-Semitic, Wegeman argued that Woolf  created those scenes to reveal stereotypical anti-Semitism.

By the time the novel was published in 1938, Wegener maintained, Woolf was already defining herself by her husband Leaonard’s Jewishness. As a result, she said, “Woolf was aware of her racial biases and processed them in her text.”

Mystery number four: Woolf’s edits

Denise Ayo teased out a mystery with a similar feel in her paper, “Staging (Self-)Censorship: Virginia Woolf’s `Women Must Weep.'” In it, she compared the chopped-up version of Three Guineas that appeared in the May and June 1938 issues of the Atlantic Monthly under the title “Women Must Weep — Or Unite Against War” to the actual text from which they derived.

Denise Ayo

Denise Ayo

She noted that the Atlantic Monthly version is not just an excerpt of Three Guineas. Nor is it a condensation or summary of sorts. Instead, it leaves out material without using ellipsis and includes text that is not in the published version. Its prose is fragmented, leaving words and thoughts hanging.  It contains contradictory meanings. And its organizational structure is disjointed.

So was Woolf temporarily off her mark when she sent her piece to the Atlantic? Did she wearily submit to a bad edit job? Or, once again, was the hash that is “Women Must Weep” done for a purpose?

Ayo argued for the latter. In Three Guineas Woolf complained that journalism was a “mincing machine,” so in her Atlantic piece she did the mincing herself to make a point, Ayo maintained.

According to her, “Woolf meant to communicate to Atlantic Monthly readers that the integrity of her message had been corrupted” by periodical culture that cannot accept a feminist pacifist approach to the world.

No mystery about the depth, breadth of the conference

The conference, sponsored by Loyola and Northern Illinois universities, and attended by more than 200 common readers, students, faculty and independent scholars from around the world, boasted about 63 sessions.

Conference organizers and their graduate assistants: Sarah Polen, Diana Swanson, Pamela Caughie and Katie Dyson.

Conference organizers and their graduate assistants: Sarah Polen, Diana Swanson, Pamela Caughie and Katie Dyson.

That doesn’t include special events — such as a performance of Sara Ruhl’s Orlando pulled off by students after just three weeks of rehearsals — or “Performing Woolf: ‘A Mark on the Wall'” by Adrianne Krstansky of Brandeis and Abigail Killeen of Bowdoin College.

The conference also included a thought-provoking keynote roundtable discussion on Woolf and violence with Mark Hussey of Pace, Ashley Foster of CUNY, Sarah Cole of Columbia, Christine Froula of Northwestern, and Jean Mills of John Jay College and keynotes by Maud Ellman of the University of Chicago and Tuzyline Allan of Baruch College.

The Virginia Woolf Players line up to read Woolf.

The Virginia Woolf Players line up to read Woolf.

The social finale for most conference participants was the Saturday night banquet, preceded by drinks and appetizers in the Mundelein Hall Courtyard and topped off by the traditional readings of favorite Woolf passages by the Virginia Woolf Players.

Stalwarts stayed on for Saturday morning sessions before packing up and heading out to home countries ranging from the UK to Japan.

More conference links

 

Read Full Post »

Now online via Flickr: A small collection of photos from the 24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Writing the World  in Chicago.

Have any you’d like to share? Send them along to Blogging Woolf.

View the photos here or by clicking on the link in the right sidebar under the heading Woolf SnapsRead more about the conference.

2014 conference photos

Read Full Post »

Heading to Chicago for the 24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Writing theScreen Shot 2014-05-30 at 1.31.56 PM World, June 5-8?

If so, great. I’ll see you there. If not, follow the conference on Twitter.

Here’s the hashtag established by conference planners Diana Swanson and Pamela Caughie: #VWConf14 and here’s the handle: @Woolf_Conf

Read Full Post »

Registration for the 2014 International Conference on Virginia Woolf, June 5-8 in Chicago, is open, and if you are presenting a paper at the conference, you should register by April 15 in order to be included in the printed24th annual conference poster program.

There are special events on June 4 and June 5 that you also may want to consider as you make your travel plans. These include:

  • Poetry Off the Shelf: A Woolf-Inspired Reading by Sina Queyras on Wednesday, June 4, at 7 p.m at the Poetry Foundation.
  • Newberry Library Bloomsbury Exhibit on Wednesday, June 4, 3-4:30 p.m. and Thursday, June 5, 10-11:30 a.m.

Another special feature of the conference are seminars led by noted Woolf scholars ranging from Woolf and Cognition’s Outward Turn with Melba Cuddy-Keane to Queering/Cripping Modernism with Madelyn Detloff. Be sure to read about these sessions before you register, as you will be asked to choose your first, second and third choices during the registration process.

The conference also offers special discounted registration rate for students, part-time and emeritus faculty, and independent scholars. The Woolf Conference is completely self-supporting through the registration fees, so attendees are asked to take this special registration rate only if you qualify for it.

Read Full Post »

The 24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, co-sponsored by Loyola University Chicago and Northern Illinois University, will take place in Chicago, Ill. in the U.S.A.,  June 5-8, 2014.

24th annual conference poster

Most conference activities will take will take place in Mundelein Center on Loyola University’s lakeshore campus.

Call for papers

Virginia Woolf: Writing the World” aims to address such themes as the creation of worlds through literary writing, Woolf’s reception as a world writer, world wars and the centenary of the First World War, and myriad other topics.

Conference organizers invite proposals for papers, panels, roundtables, and workshops on any aspect of the conference theme from literary and interdisciplinary scholars, creative and performing artists, common readers, advanced undergraduate and graduate students, and teachers of Woolf at all levels. Possible themes include but are not limited to:

  • Woolf as a world writer, including reception and/or influence of her work
  • Writing as world creation
  • Globalization of Woolf studies
  • Feminist re-envisionings of the world Lesbian, gay, and/or queer worlds Living worlds
  • Natural worlds
  • Cosmology, physics, different kinds of worlds Geography(y)(ies) and/or mapping the world “First” and “Third” worlds
  • Postcolonialism
  • The centenary of World War I
  • The World Wars
  • Peace, justice, war, and violence
  • Feminist writers of 1914 and/or suffragettes and WWI Pacifist and conscientious objector movements
  • Class and/in Woolf’s world(s) Writing the working class Socialists “righting” the world Expatriate worlds
  • artistic worlds
  • Inter-arts influences, including painting, cinema, music, and journalism
  • The publishing world
  • Transnational modernisms and postmodernisms
  • Woolf and/on international relations
  • Imperialism and anti-imperialism
  • Teaching Woolf in global contexts
  • Teaching Woolf outside of the traditional 4-year college classroom
  • Woolf and the new global media
  • Woolf and Chicago connections/reception

Download the Call for Papers as a PDF.

Submission Guidelines

For individual papers, send a 250-word proposal. For panels (three or four papers, please), send a proposed title for the panel and 250-word proposals for EACH paper. For roundtables and workshops, send a 250- to 500-word proposal and a brief biographical description of each participant.

Because organizers will be using a blind submission process, please do not include your name(s) on your proposal. Instead, in your covering e-mail, please include your name(s), institutional affiliation (if any), paper and/or session title(s), and contact information. If you would like to chair a panel instead of proposing a paper or panel, please let organizers know.

Deadline for proposals

January 25, 2014. Email proposals as a Word attachment to Woolf2014@niu.edu.

Get more information

For more information about the conference, including the keynote speakers, go to http://www.niu.edu/woolfwritingtheworld/.

Read Full Post »

The 24th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, co-sponsored by Loyola University Chicago and Northern Illinois University, will take place in Chicago, Ill. in the U.S.A.,  June 5-8, 2014.

24th annual conference poster

Most conference activities will take will take place in Mundelein Center on Loyola University’s lakeshore campus.

Call for papers

Virginia Woolf: Writing the World” aims to address such themes as the creation of worlds through literary writing, Woolf’s reception as a world writer, world wars and the centenary of the First World War, and myriad other topics.

Conference organizers invite proposals for papers, panels, roundtables, and workshops on any aspect of the conference theme from literary and interdisciplinary scholars, creative and performing artists, common readers, advanced undergraduate and graduate students, and teachers of Woolf at all levels. Possible themes include but are not limited to:

  • Woolf as a world writer, including reception and/or influence of her work
  • Writing as world creation
  • Globalization of Woolf studies
  • Feminist re-envisionings of the world Lesbian, gay, and/or queer worlds Living worlds
  • Natural worlds
  • Cosmology, physics, different kinds of worlds Geography(y)(ies) and/or mapping the world “First” and “Third” worlds
  • Postcolonialism
  • The centenary of World War I
  • The World Wars
  • Peace, justice, war, and violence
  • Feminist writers of 1914 and/or suffragettes and WWI Pacifist and conscientious objector movements
  • Class and/in Woolf’s world(s) Writing the working class Socialists “righting” the world Expatriate worlds
  • artistic worlds
  • Inter-arts influences, including painting, cinema, music, and journalism
  • The publishing world
  • Transnational modernisms and postmodernisms
  • Woolf and/on international relations
  • Imperialism and anti-imperialism
  • Teaching Woolf in global contexts
  • Teaching Woolf outside of the traditional 4-year college classroom
  • Woolf and the new global media
  • Woolf and Chicago connections/reception

Download the Call for Papers as a PDF.

Submission Guidelines

For individual papers, send a 250-word proposal. For panels (three or four papers, please), send a proposed title for the panel and 250-word proposals for EACH paper. For roundtables and workshops, send a 250- to 500-word proposal and a brief biographical description of each participant.

Because organizers will be using a blind submission process, please do not include your name(s) on your proposal. Instead, in your covering e-mail, please include your name(s), institutional affiliation (if any), paper and/or session title(s), and contact information. If you would like to chair a panel instead of proposing a paper or panel, please let organizers know.

Deadline for proposals

January 25, 2014. Email proposals as a Word attachment to Woolf2014@niu.edu.

Get more information

For more information about the conference, including the keynote speakers, go to http://www.niu.edu/woolfwritingtheworld/.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: