2015 Conference

Texts in Times of Conflict‘ will take place on Tuesday 8th September 2015 at De Montfort University. The conference will explore how the relationship between periods of conflict – cultural, religious, ideological, economic, political, and social – and the texts that accompany them (from print to emerging digital medias) shapes our world.



Register for the Texts in Times of Conflict conference here.

The cost of this year’s conference is £15 and concession price is £10. An early-bird price of £10 is available if you register before 13th August. De Montfort University staff and students go free.



Queens Building, Rooms 0.09, 0.11, 0.13

Registration 8.45-9.30

KEYNOTE ONE [0.09] 9:30—10:30: Professor Ian Gadd (Bath Spa University), ‘Conflict resolution: the origins of modern copyright’

SESSION ONE 10:30—11:30

PANEL ONE [0.09]: Appropriations of National Literature and Conflict
CHAIR: Cassandra Hunter

Thomas Spray (Durham University), ‘Weaponizing the Sagas: Old Norse and the Schleswig-Holstein Question’; Ged Hodgson (De Montfort University), ‘Shakespeare and the Radical Press’

PANEL TWO [0.13]: Gender and Conflict
CHAIR: Frances Galt

Gemma Scott (Keele University), ‘Representations of Women under the Emergency in India (1975-1977)’; Stephanie Brynes (University of Texas), ‘Conflicting Histories: Anachronistic Portraits of Gender in Gide’s Les faux-monnayeurs’

Break 11.30-11.45

SESSION TWO 11.45-1.05

PANEL THREE [0.09]: Travel and Conflict
CHAIR: Phil Tromans

Robert Pain (Durham University), ‘Mary Wollstoncraft’s double self: Performing and distorting emotional conflict in Letters Written During a Short Residence in Sweden, Norway and Denmark’; Josefin Holmstrom (University of Cambridge), ‘“[A] letter commenced while guns are firing”: Arthur Hugh Clough’s Response to the Risorgimento’; Daniel Howell (New York University), ‘The presence effects of Rafael Alberti’s “Defence of Madrid”’

Lunch 1.05-2


PANEL FOUR [0.09]: Modern Conflict in the East
CHAIR: Gemma Scott

Diya Gupta (King’s College London), ‘Colonial encounters in the Second World War: the Indian Experience’; Miel Groten (VU University, Amsterdam), ‘Making sense of a war: Texts from the Dutch military in the Indonesian war of independence’; Shaffira Gayatri (University of Warwick) and Civita Patriana (London School of Economics), ‘The Stereoscopic Vision in The Blind Man’s Garden: An analysis of the diasporic dual vision as a challenge to the Panoptic power’

Break 3.20-3.35

SESSION FOUR 3.35-4.35

PANEL FIVE [0.09]: Heritage, Education and Conflict
CHAIR: Phil Tromans

Camille Angelo (University of Toronto), ‘Writing the Trench into the Classroom: a comparative analysis of Iraq’s (1921-1940) and Israel’s (1948-1965) incorporation of archaeology into primary and secondary school textbooks’; Sofia Mali (Loughborough University), ‘Exploring the different ideologies on Byzantium as products of European national museum practices and discourse’

PANEL SIX [0.13]: Modern Conflict in the West
CHAIR: Lucy Hobbs

Thomas P. Stephens (Durham University), ‘“A German isn’t a human being when you come to look at it”: Justifying killing to British Boys, 1914-1918’; Kirsty Hemsworth (University of Sheffield), ‘Translating the Towers: A case for 9/11 fiction and literary translation’

Break 4.35-4.45

KEYNOTE TWO [0.09] 4:30—5:30: Dr Natasha Alden (Aberystwyth University), Conflicts in the Writing of War: the Ethics of Adapting the Past in Historical Fiction

Wine Reception 5.45





This year’s speakers are Dr Natasha Alden of Aberystwyth University and Professor Ian Gadd from Bath Spa University!

Natasha’s research interests include historical fiction, memory and queer writing. Her monograph Reading Behind the Lines: Postmemory in Contemporary British War Fiction (2014) explores the concept of postmemory as it applies to historical fiction by contemporary British writers. You can find out more about Natasha here.

Ian’s research interests span the literature and history of the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. He is a bibliographer and book historian. He is a general editor and the textual advisor of the new Cambridge Works of Jonathan Swift, and co-editor of four of Cambridge’s eighteen volumes, including the already published English Political Writings, 1711-14 (2008). He is also the President of SHARP (The Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing). Find out more about Ian here.



The conference will take place on the ground floor of Queens Building, De Montfort University, Mill Lane, Leicester, LE2 7DR. Queens is located next to the library. A campus map can be found here.


CfP: Texts in Times of Conflict

Reflecting on the seismic cultural and political shifts of his own time, Francis Bacon pinpointed ‘printing, gunpowder, and the compass’ as the technological drivers which had ‘changed the appearance and state of the whole world’. Bacon’s identification of communicative (print), violent (gunpowder) and technological (compass) forms of cultural expression and exchange as world-shaping continues to resonate, shaping the production and interpretation of texts.

We welcome papers of between 15 to 20 minutes’ length on topics including but not limited to:

  • Textual and visual representations, interpretations of and responses to conflict
  • Adaptations which respond to past and/or present conflicts (including perceived conflicts within the discipline itself, be they intellectual, methodological, pedagogical etc)
  • Conflictual relationships between artistic, critical and intellectual movements
  • Processes and agents shaping the design, production, dissemination and consumption of texts
  • Theoretical or bibliographical methodologies
  • Intellectual conflicts surrounding the emergence of new media and technologies
  • Competing or contradictory representations of conflict through identical or different expressive forms
  • State involvement in the production, dissemination and consumption of texts in times of conflict
  • The evolution of media forms and their impact on conflict-based studies

Proposals of up to 250 words should be submitted online here by Friday 5th June. Alternatively, email them to gradcats@outlook.com.

Texts in Times of Conflict will take place on 8th September.

This conference is jointly hosted by De Montfort’s Centre for Textual Studies and Centre for Adaptations.

Our keynote speakers are Dr Natasha Alden, Aberystwyth University, and Professor Ian Gadd, Bath Spa University.

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