Call for Papers:
“Negotiating Shakespeare: History, Culture, and Context”
The 39th Annual Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, Ohio
October 9-11, 2015
Ian Smith, Lafayette College
The National Players, who will perform A Midsummer Night’s Dream and offer a workshop for actors.
This year, the OVSC is especially interested in papers and panels on the topic of negotiating Shakespeare through history, culture, and context. We welcome a variety of approaches to this topic. Essays might consider, for instance, how we negotiate Shakespeare in the twenty-first century. How do adaptations of Shakespeare’s work negotiate the gulf of over 400 years that stands between early modern texts and us? Which theories of time and/or history are the most fruitful in negotiating our relationship to the early modern era and its texts? How do we negotiate the use of such “old” texts, like Shakespeare’s, in the contemporary classroom? Alternately, essays could inquire about Shakespeare’s negotiation of his culture, in relation, for instance, to governmental censorship or playhouse politics. Or, papers might examine negotiations within Shakespeare’s plays, including characters’ negotiations of identity as it relates to gender, class, race, sexuality, and/or religion. Discussions of bad faith negotiations, such as Aaron’s false promise of freedom for Martius and Quintus in exchange for one of the Andronici’s hands, are also encouraged as are those that examine characters’ negotiations of language and social systems found within the plays.
Proposals for papers of 20 minutes, roundtable topics, or panels of three or four members on Shakespeare’s work and that of his contemporaries are welcome. Please send abstracts of 300-500 words to email@example.com by August 1, 2015.
The OVSC publishes a volume of selected papers each year and conferees are welcome to submit revised versions of their papers for consideration. Students who present are eligible to compete for the M. Rick Smith Memorial Prize. More information is available at http://blogs.uakron.edu/ovsconf/.
This year’s conference is sponsored by Bowling Green State University, Lourdes University, Owens Community College, and the University of Toledo.
Call for Papers: “Lovers, Madmen and Poets:
Shakespeare and the Imaginary, Supernatural, and Divine”
The 38th Annual Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference
Ohio State University
October 24 and 25, 2014
Evelyn Gajowski, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
David George, Urbana University
The Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference seeks papers and panels relating to all things Shakespearean, especially those focusing on the spectral, the fantastic, the mad, and the fey. We take our cue from Theseus: “Lovers and madmen have such seething brains, / Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend / More than cool reason ever comprehends.” The place of the world-beyond-the world, the line between reality and fantasy, and the demarcation of the sane from the mad are ever-present and controversial aspects of Shakespeare’s work and of early modern literature more broadly. As the plays we now call ‘romances’ or ‘dark comedies’ suggest, the transformation of the tragic into the comedic relies, to some extent, on the willing suspension of disbelief, on the capacity to accept what is otherwise contrary to our understanding, expectation, or experience. From Samuel Pepys’ condemnation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, to the oblique resonances between Hamlet and Derrida’s Specters of Marx, the relationship between the ‘unreal’ and the ‘real’ is everywhere present and significant in Shakespeare’s works, and centrally a focus of performance history and critical reception from the earliest moments to the present. This conference will especially highlight these aspects of Shakespeare’s oeuvre.
Join us October 24-25, 2014 in Columbus, Ohio. Papers of 20 minutes, roundtable topics, and suggestions for panels on Shakespeare’s work and that of his contemporaries welcome.
Please send abstracts of 500 words to firstname.lastname@example.org by September 12, 2014.
Call for Papers: Courtliness and Convention
The 37th Annual Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference
Sheraton Cleveland, Airport
October 10-12, 2013
The planning committee of the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference seeks proposals for papers or panels from across today’s theoretical and methodological landscape that engage Courtliness and Convention in the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. How do Shakespearean plays illustrate and critique early modern conceptions of conventional courtly behavior? More broadly, how do the era’s plays and poems incorporate, problematize, and establish social convention – political, literary, educational, rhetorical, or otherwise? How do we understand the conventions of courtliness in today’s theaters and classrooms?
The OVSC invites papers that explore representation of Shakespearean Courtliness and Convention in the early modern context and in contemporary adaptations.
Possible topics might include:
- Shakespearean Ritual
- Royals and Peasants
- Artfulness and Leisure
- Courtly Love
- Machiavels and Gladhanders
- Staging Conventions
- Fools and Clowns
- Literary Customs
- Gender and Power
- Command Performances
- Honor and Violence
- Chivalry and Reputation
- The Domestic and the Political
- Renaissance Education
- Dumb Shows
- Literary Homage and Originality
- Courtly Hospitality
- Richard Dutton, The Ohio State University
- Sandra Logan, Michigan State University
Please submit 500-word abstracts for papers by September 1, 2013 to email@example.com. We welcome roundtable discussion proposals as well. The OVSC publishes a volume of selected papers each year and conferees are welcome to submit revised versions of their papers for consideration. Students who present are eligible to compete for the M. Rick Smith Memorial Prize. More information is available at blogs.uakron.edu/ovsconf.
The 36th Annual Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference 2012
October 18-20, 2012
The planning committee of the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference seeks proposals for papers or panels from across today’s theoretical and methodological landscape that engage some facet of the amalgam “Extreme(ly) Shakespeare(an).” “Extreme Shakespeare” alludes to the wide variety of extremities that can be found in Shakespeare’s work. It brings to mind those occasions where the playwright demonstrates either a lack of regard for or a lack of control over the principles of proportionality and balance, to the degree either of those principles were prioritized by dramatists of the early modern period. Of course, extremity is an inherently relative value, which leads to a second facet of the amalgam open to conferees. “Extremely Shakespearean” refers to the fundamental characteristics of Shakespeare’s art, craft, thought, philosophy, etc. How might we best operationalize the term “Shakespearean”? What quality or qualities should we identify as the quintessence of Shakespeare’s work? Conversely, where do we observe Shakespeare at his least Shakespearean? Have we in the past, do we now, and/or might we ever share a persuasive understanding of what constitutes the most significant attributes of Shakespeare? Is the pursuit a noble quest, or a fool’s errand?
The OVSC publishes a volume of selected papers each year and conferees are welcome to submit revised versions of their papers for consideration. Students who present are eligible to compete for the M. Rick Smith Memorial Prize.
Ralph Alan Cohen
The American Shakespeare Center and Mary Baldwin College
Lina Perkins Wilder
Featured conference events will include a site-specific production of Hamlet staged by the Marietta College Theatre Department as well as an Esbenshade Series concert with a Shakespearean theme. Other conference events will include a night owl screening of a recent film adaptation, an evening reception at a local establishment, our annual luncheon, coffee, tea & snack breaks that will have you stuffing your pockets “for later,” and all the October foliage your eyes can possibly take in.
Abstracts and panel proposals are due by August 31st. All submissions and inquiries should be directed to Joseph Sullivan at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to
Marietta, OH 45750.
Conference updates will be posted on our webpage as they become available.