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CFP: AVSA 2013 "The Victorian Environment" (11/30/2012; 2/6-8/2013)




Australasian Victorian Studies Association Conference
'The Victorian Environment'

The University of Melbourne, Australia

February 6-8, 2013

With the pressures of industrialism and the clustering of workers in urban centres, the Victorians were acutely aware that their environment was changing.  Torn between nostalgia for a countryside that was in jeopardy and exhilaration at the rapidity with which their surroundings altered, Victorian literature and culture reflects a world undergoing radical change.  Colonization and assisted emigration schemes expanded the scope of the environment still further, pushing the boundaries of the home environment on an unprecedented scale.  These untamed physical environments enabled new freedoms, but also posed hostile challenges that invited attempts to control the natural world.

We seek papers of no more than twenty minutes in length, which consider any aspect of how the Victorians engaged with or sought to retreat from their environment.   Note that submission of an abstract signals an intention to attend the conference and that absentee papers will not be permitted.

Topics might include:


  • Landscape/cultivation of the land
  • Natural disasters and responses to them
  • Pollution, industrialism and place
  • The weather/climate
  • The country versus the city
  • The natural world
  • Sanitation, health, and disease
  • Fire
  • Water
  • The colonial environment
  • Emigration
  • Seascapes
  • Animals
  • Science and the classification of nature
  • Exploration and mapping
  • Visualizing the Victorian environment
  • Soundscapes and noise pollution
  • Smells
  • Excavation and archaeology
  • The environment of Victorian studies in the present
  • Nostalgia/the sense of an elsewhere
  • Heritage/conservation

Please email abstracts of 200 words maximum and a brief biographical note to AVSA-2013@unimelb.edu.au by no later than 30 November 2012.

Further information about the conference will be made available at www.avsa.unimelb.edu.au/AVSA2013.htm

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