The Marginalised Mainstream: Literature, Culture & Popularity
8–9 November 2012
(ABSTRACTS: 1 June)
8-9 November 2012, Senate House, University of London
Keynote speakers include: Professor Phillip Tew (Brunel University) and Professor Christoph Lindner (University of Amsterdam)
‘Texts are always sites of evaluative struggle between the “high” and the “low”, whatever the presumed hierarchical positioning of their overall domain.’ (Léon Hunt)
The Marginalised Mainstream seeks to discuss the growing interest in and importance of mainstream culture and the popular as ways of engaging with cultural products of the late nineteenth to early twenty-first centuries, the long twentieth century, 1880–2010. Specifically, we seek to bring together postgraduate students, early career academics and established researchers working in the fields of Literature, Cultural Studies and elsewhere in the Humanities, to explore the mainstream culture and objects of mass appeal are so frequently marginalised by the academic community, as well as to offer some explanations for why this marginalisation might be.
We invite proposals for papers, reports, work-in-progress, workshops and pre-formed panels from all disciples on themes that could include, but are not limited to, the following:
• The changing conceptualisation of canonicity;
• Genres, subgenres and the process of genre-fication;
• Queer fictions and alien concepts;
• ‘Low-’, ‘middle-’ and ‘high-brow’ texts;
• Critical acclaim vs. mass appeal;
• Cult classics and forgotten classics;
• Award winners, box-office smashes and bestsellers;
• Taking theory where it’s never gone before;
• Historiographies of gender, race and class.
It goes without saying that writers, texts or topics need not be canonical and we actively encourage papers discussing writers, texts and visual media from around the world.
Panels will consist of three 20-minute papers followed by discussion. A lunch will be included on the first day, followed by a closing wine reception at the end of the second, where we hope all delegates and attendees will have a chance to mingle.
Abstracts of no more than 350 words are invited by 1 June 2012 . They must include:
• 350-word abstract, including title;
• your name;
• contact information;
• a brief biographical paragraph about your academic interests;
• any technical support that might be needed.
Please email submissions, in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats, to organisers Brittain Bright (Goldsmiths College, University of London), Sam Goodman (University of Exeter) and Emma Grundy Haigh (Goldsmiths College, University of London) at
Acceptances will be sent out by no later than 16 July 2012.
Conference website: http://marginalisedmainstream.wordpress.com
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Marginalised-Mainstream-Conference-2012/25…
Please note: we are not in a position to assist with conference travel or subsistence.