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Event: DREAMing Romantic Europe Workshop 3 ‘Romantic Media’ (6/28-29/2020)

DREAMing Romantic Europe Workshop 3 ‘Romantic Media’

Online conference

June 28-29, 2020

Welcome to what would have been the international Workshop 3 of the AHRC-funded project DREAMing Romantic Europe, themed to ‘Romantic Media’.

The workshop was to have been held in beautiful Grasmere, Cumbria, as guests of the Wordsworth Trust, in conjunction with the Wordsworth250 celebrations and the opening of the redisplayed Dove Cottage.  In the light of current circumstances, we have moved this event online, and in the spirit of making the best of new opportunities, we have opened it up to auditors around the world. It seems fitting that this collaboration to build a virtual exhibition of Romanticism should entail a virtual event, and stimulating that such virtuality resonates so powerfully with our chosen theme of ‘media’.

The core question for our invited workshop participants was ‘Which media served to materialise and/or transmit Romantic ideas and sentiments across Europe?’  Participants were invited to present an ‘exhibit’ to RÊVE (Romantic Europe: The Virtual Exhibition) http://www.euromanticism.org. (This link will take you to the current exhibition, and to more information on the project generally, including reports on previous events and workshops.) Speakers have been asked to produce a 10-minute presentation, consisting of a single image plus a script running to about 1000 words. This ‘exhibit’ can be either scholarly or creative in mode.

We will be adapting the successful format that we have developed over previous workshops to the online environment. You will find a programme below, and we suggest that you print it out for convenience.

If you wish to attend all or any of the sessions, you will need to contact Alice Rhodes (alice.rhodes@york.ac.uk) to register your e-mail address with her. The conference itself will be held by Zoom, hosted out of Dove Cottage. Ahead of the date, once you are registered, you will be sent a Zoom invitation to your e-mail account, one for each of the two days. (You will need to have downloaded suitable Zoom software via your browser – this is very easy, and if you haven’t already got it, you will be automatically prompted. But if you have problems, Alice will provide support. If you are unfamiliar with Zoom, we recommend you play with it a day or so earlier to avoid Zoom anxiety.)

To join the event, click on the link in the email message. You will be sent to a waiting room, and will be admitted by the host. Please aim to arrive in the waiting room at least 15 minutes before the beginning of each sessions; sessions will be locked and all participants muted once formal presentations begin. Note that sessions may be recorded and subsequently transcribed, and photographs may be taken of the Zoom screen. If you do not wish to be recorded, please let us know, and we can arrange for this. Discussion will be conducted by posting questions/comments in the chat-pane, followed by live conversation moderated by the session chair.

If you are so minded, please feel free to create your own Romantic-themed virtual background.




Sunday 28th June 2020

12.00 Conference waiting room opens

1.30 Welcome and introduction to the project (Watson, Seth)

2.00 Break

2.15 Session 1 Individual 10 min presentations of ‘exhibits’ for RÊVE (Romantic Europe: The Virtual Exhibition) followed by comment and discussion, chair tbc)

Jeff Cowton: ‘The Malta Notebook’: Wordsworth’s gift to Coleridge for his Mediterranean sojourn

Emese Asztalos: Transmitter of Romantic ideas and sentiments in Hungary: Franz Liszt's Journey in 1838

Carmen Casaliggi, From Toulouse to Paris: A Holograph Letter from Adam Smith to David Hume, 1765

Anne Bohnenkamp-Renken, A special romantic letter message. Hermann von Pückler-Muskau to Bettine von Arnim, 16 July 1834

Teresa Raczka-Jeziorska, The handwritten poem sketch by famous Polish novelist Kazimierz Bujnicki (1788-1878) in the album amicorum belonging to the young countess Michalina Weyssenhoff

3.15 Break

3.45 Session 2 Individual 10 min presentations of ‘exhibits’ for RÊVE (Romantic Europe: The Virtual Exhibition) followed by comment and discussion, chair Diego Saglia)

Kirsty Archer Thompson, ‘A View of Abbotsford from across the Tweed:’ Prototype, Promotion and Place

Ellen Harvey, A Claude Glass

Nicola J. Watson, Viewing by Moonlight

Simon Bainbridge, Alpine Travel Writing and the Evolution of Mountaineering

Patrick Vincent, The guestbook of the Buvette de la Croix de Flégères, above Chamonix, 1832 to 1855

Catriona Seth, Swiss Roll? Mongin's Helvétie wallpaper

5.30-6.30 Virtual cocktails and chat, enlivened by an installation by textile artist Louise Ann Wilson devoted to Dorothy Wordsworth and conceptual artist Ellen Harvey’s video about her current project ‘The Disappointed Tourist’

Monday 29th June 2020

9.00 Conference waiting room opens

10.00 Session 3 Individual 10 min presentations of ‘exhibits’ for RÊVE (Romantic Europe: The Virtual Exhibition) followed by comment and discussion chaired by Caroline Bertonèche)

Simon Kovesi, The Blasting Screw: The Romantic period's 'turn to nature'

Alice Rhodes, Thomas Hood's Favourite Anatomy Song

Sophie Thomas, Sir John Soane’s Sarcophagus

Johan Schimanski and Ulrike Spring, A Neoromantic Goose in the Writer’s Home Museum

11.00 Break

11.30 Session 4 Reflections on RÊVE and the virtues of the virtual post Covid-19 (chaired by Sally Blackburn-Daniels)

12.30 Lunch break + A virtual walk around Grasmere with Louise Ann Wilson

1.30 Session 5 Romantic Media (led by Seth)

2.30 Conference closes




Kirsty Archer-Thompson F.S.A. Scot is Collections and Interpretation Manager for the Abbotsford Trust, an independent charity responsible for safeguarding and managing the former home and estate of Sir Walter Scott: a grade A listed house and designed landscape near Melrose in the Scottish Borders. She is responsible for the built and natural heritage of the site, including conservation, research and collections management, alongside the management of the house as Scott's self-styled ‘museum for living in,’ heading up a small team of core staff and seventy volunteers.  Kirsty is presently leading a major cataloguing project on the Scott family archive and acting as educator on the Massive Online Open Course: Walter Scott - The Man Behind the Monument in association with the University of Aberdeen. She is a Council Member of the Edinburgh Sir Walter Scott Club and acting National Project Manager for Scott’s 250th anniversary across 2021 and 2022.

Emese Asztalos I work as a curator in Petőfi Literary Museum in Budapest. My main research area is Hungarian Literature in the first part of the 19th century. According to “new museology” tendencies I tend to consider multiple discourses and academic disciplines through constructing exhibitions. I defended my PhD in 2017, my thesis endeavours to look at the previously unexplored oeuvre of Lázár Petrichevich Horváth (1807–1851) from the perspective of cultural studies.

Simon Bainbridge is Professor of Romantic Studies in the Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University. He is the author of several books and many essays on British Romanticism, including his most recent monograph, Mountaineering and British Romanticism: The Literary Cultures of Climbing, 1770-1836 (Oxford University Press, 2020). He is a Trustee of the Wordsworth Trust and a past president of the British Society for Romantic Studies.

Sally Blackburn-Daniels is Impact Consultant for English at the Open University, working with Nicola Watson on the DREAMing Romantic Europe & RÊVE case study. She is currently transcribing and editing the notebooks of Vernon Lee (1914-1919) for the Holographical Lee Database (HoL), a digital humanities project at the Université de la Réunion and CNRS (Paris). She is communications officer and social media manager for the IVLS. Sally’s essay ‘Vernon Lee: Excavating The Spirit of Rome’ is included in Excavating Modernity: Physical, Temporal and Psychological Strata in Literature, 1900-1930 which was published by Routledge in 2018.

Prof. Anne Bohnenkamp-Renken is the Director of the Freie Deutsches Hochstift/Goethe-Museum, a non-profit research institution and one of the oldest cultural institutes in Germany. She teaches Modern German Literature at the Goethe University Frankfurt, her research focus is on translation/interculturality, world literature, edition science and the field of literature and media. Her work in German studies and comparative literature centres on Goethe. Since 2012 she has been planning the expansion of Frankfurt's Goethe House to include the German Romantik-Museum, which is scheduled to open in 2021.

Carmen Casaliggi is a Reader in English at Cardiff Metropolitan University. Her research interests include Romantic literature and art, the relationship between British and European Romanticism, Romantic literary circles, and the work of John Ruskin and J.M.W. Turner. She has published a wide range of journal articles and book chapters on the long nineteenth century, and her books include: Ruskin in Perspective: Contemporary Essays (Cambridge Scholars, 2007; ed. with Paul March-Russell); Legacies of Romanticism: Literature, Culture, Aesthetics (Routledge, 2012; ed. with Paul March-Russell); and Romanticism: A Literary and Cultural History (Routledge, 2016; with Porscha Fermanis). She is currently working on a new book-length study entitled Romantic Networks in Europe: Transnational Encounters, 1786-1850 for Edinburgh University Press and she is guest editor for a special issue on “Housing Romanticism” for the European Romantic Review. She was a Visiting Fellow in the Arts and Humanities Institute at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth (2019-2020) and is recipient of a fully funded Visiting Fellowship awarded by the Lewis Walpole Library, Yale University (2020-2021) with a project entitled: “Rethinking Transnational Networks in Paris: Madame du Deffand, Adam Smith, and the Condorcet circle”.

Jeff Cowton is Curator and Head of Learning at Wordsworth Grasmere where he oversees collections management and learning programmes based on Wordsworth’s home of Dove Cottage and the associated Designated Collection of manuscripts, books and fine art. He is currently leading on the interpretation and Activity Plan of ‘Reimagining Wordsworth’, a £6m redevelopment of the site planned to coincide with the poet’s 250th birthday this year.

Ellen Harvey is a British-born conceptual artist living and working in Brooklyn. She is a graduate of the Whitney Independent Study Program, Yale Law School and Harvard College.

Her work uses a variety of media to explore such themes as art as a mirror, the aesthetic value of the ruin, the ecological implications of the picturesque aesthetic and the social and political consensus represented by the museum. She frequently pairs traditional representational aesthetics with seemingly antithetical post-modern strategies, such as institutional critique, mapping, appropriation and pastiche.

She is the recipient of numerous awards including most recently a Smithsonian Artists Research Fellowship, a George A. & Eliza Gardener Howard Foundation Fellowship, the Wivina Demeester Prize for Commissioned Public Art and a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation.

She is the author of New York Beautification Project, published by G. R. Miller & Co. in 2005 and her work has both been included in and been the subject of numerous books including: Ellen Harvey: Mirror, published by the Pennsylvania Academy in 2006; Ellen Harvey: The Unloved, published by Hannibal in 2014 and Ellen Harvey: Museum of Failure, published by G. R. Miller & Co. in 2015.

She has completed large scale public artworks for the Miami Beach Convention Center, Metro-North’s Yankee Stadium station, New York’s Queen’s Plaza subway station, the Chicago’s Francisco station, Boston’s South Station, the San Francisco Airport, the Philadelphia International Airport, the Andover Internal Revenue Service Offices and the Flemish National Architect, among others.

She has exhibited extensively in the U.S. and internationally and was included in the 2008 Whitney Biennial. Her work has been the subject of solo museum exhibitions at the Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia, the Groeninge Museum, Bruges, Belgium, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC, the Bass Museum, Miami Beach, the Center for Contemporary Art, Warsaw, Poland, the Pennsylvania Academy, Philadelphia and the Whitney Museum at Altria, New York, among others. She is currently working on The Tourist: Ellen Harvey and J.M.W.Turner, a solo exhibition for Turner Contemporary, U.K., scheduled to open in the spring of 2021. An expanded version of the exhibition will be travelling to the Museum der Moderne, Salzburg, Austria and to the Laznia Center for Contemporary Art, Gdansk, Poland.

For additional information, visit www.ellenharvey.info or follow Ellen Harvey Studio on Instagram.

Simon Kövesi is Professor of English Literature at Oxford Brookes University, and Head of its Department of English and Modern Languages. He researches working-class writing from the Romantic period through to contemporary literature. His books include James Kelman (Manchester UP, 2007) and John Clare: Nature, Criticism and History (Palgrave, 2017). He is editor of the John Clare Society Journal, a Fellow of the English Association, and a member of the English sub-panel for REF2021. He is currently working on a book entitled Literature and Poverty: 1800-2000, and a paperback edition of Pierce Egan's 1821 smash hit Life in London for Oxford World's Classics.

Teresa Rączka-Jeziorska is assistant professor at the Unit for Romantic Literature of the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Researcher of Romantic literature, the eastern borderland of the former Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Polish-Baltic cultural associations. Author of monographs on rivers in the works of Adam Mickiewicz and Taras Shevchenko (2011), Polish-Livonian Romanticism (2016), the writing of Irina Saburova (2017), the culture of the manor house of the old Polish Livonia in the 19th century (2018). Co-author of the Atlas of Polish Romanticism. World-Europe-Poland (2015) and Adam Mickiewicz's Unknown Autograph. Two pages of Pan Tadeusz's Invocation (2018).

Alice Rhodes is a final year PhD student in the Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies at the University of York, BARS European Engagement Fellow, and project assistant for RÊVE. Her thesis examines the science of speech production in Romantic literature and her wider research interests include: science, technology, and medicine in the literature of the long eighteenth century; Romantic era politics; materialist philosophy; and the works of John Thelwall and Mary and Percy Shelley. She has published on shorthand writing and transcription in the Romantic era and has previously contributed RÊVE exhibits on Thelwall and Erasmus Darwin.

Johan Schimanski, Professor of Comparative Literature and Ulrike Spring, Associate Professor of Modern European History, and at the University of Oslo, are coordinators of the Research Council of Norway project TRAUM – Transforming Author Museums (2016–2019). Other research interests include the history of travel (Spring), border poetics (Schimanski), and Arctic discourses (Spring and Schimanski).

Catriona Seth FBA MAE is the Marshal Foch Professor of French Literature at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of All Souls. Her work on literature and cultural history is generally (but not exclusively) based on French-language archive material. She has published widely on the Enlightenment and early-romantic period, including preparing several editions for Gallimard’s prestigious ‘Pléiade’ series—including one of that eminent European Romantic, Germaine de Staël --, a monograph on pre-Jenner inoculation, an intellectual biography of the poet Parny, a pioneering collection of women’s autobiographical texts in French and works on Marie-Antoinette including a reader in 2006 and a recent (2019) edition of letters.

Sophie Thomas is Professor of English at Ryerson University in Toronto. Her research explores the crosscurrents between literature, visual and material culture in the Romantic period. She is the author of Romanticism and Visuality: Fragments, History, Spectacle (Routledge, 2008) and is currently completing a book on objects and collections called The Romantic Museum, 1770 – 1830: Matter, Memory, and the Poetics of Things. Among recent projects related to museums is a co-edited special issue of Museum and Society (November 2019), On the Properties of Things: Collective Knowledge and the Objects of the Museum.

Patrick Vincent is Professor of English and American literature at the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. His current research projects include the Swiss National Science Foundation funded Swiss Guestbook Project, which aims to research and preserve extant historic guestbooks in Switzerland, and an edited collection of essays on the history of European Romantic literature, under contract with Cambridge University Press. He has recently co-edited a collection on the material culture of travel entitled Dévoiler l’Ailleurs: Correspondances, Carnets, et Journaux Intimes de Voyage (2020).

Nicola J Watson holds a chair in English Literature at the Open University, UK. She is a specialist in the cultural history of Romanticism with interests in the afterlives of authors and texts, travel-writing and literary tourism, the writer’s house museum, and more generally in the material culture of European Romanticism and the digital humanities. Her publications include The Literary Tourist: Readers and Places in Romantic and Victorian Britain (Palgrave 2006), and most recently The Author’s Effects: On the Writers House Museum (OUP 2020).

Louise Ann Wilson is an artist, scenographer and researcher who creates site-specific walking-performances in rural landscapes that give-voice to the void of ‘missing’ or marginal life-events – with transformative and therapeutic outcomes. Her work has addressed terminal illness, bereavement, in/fertility and involuntary childlessness, the effects of aging and the impact of change.

Each project is cross-disciplinary and developed in close collaboration with people with lay and local knowledge of the chosen landscape, scientists and experts in the field of the life-event in question and those experiencing it. These have included: geologists, botanists and shepherds; neurologists, embryologists and palliative care nurses; women experiencing involuntary childlessness, care-home residents and fishermen.

This methodology is underpinned by six ‘scenographic’ principles that are inspired by Dorothy Wordsworth and her female contemporaries’ approach to walking and landscape and theoretical concepts relating to the feminine ‘material’ sublime and therapeutic landscapes.

Works include: Women’s Walks to Remember: ‘With Memory I was there’ (2018-19), which celebrates the walking-lives of Lake District women and collects significant walks that can no longer be walked and Dorothy’s Room, an installation inspired by Dorothy’s Rydal Journals in which she was bed-bound relying on memory to transport herself into the landscape she once walked; Returning We Hear The Larks (2018), a performance-installation to mark the centenary of the end of World War One and reflect on women’s lives forever changed by conflict and the loss of those who never returned home; Mulliontide (2016 and publication), a coastal walk on The Lizard in Cornwall created in collaboration with local residents that acknowledged deep feelings for place and recognised the challenges of change, both personal and topographical; Warnscale: A Land Mark Walk Reflecting on in/Fertility and Childlessness (2015 and publication), a self-guided walking performance specific to the Warnscale Fells south of Buttermere in Cumbria aimed at women who are biologically childless-by-circumstance and mediated through a published walking-guide/artist book; The Gathering / Yr Helfa (2014) (with National Theatre Wales),a site-specific walking-performance that revealed the seasonal reproductive cycles of the ewes of Hafod y Llan, an upland sheep farm in Snowdonia, Wales; Fissure (2011) a three-day long walking performance in the Yorkshire Dales, created in response to the death of Louise’s sister from a brain tumour. In 2017 Louise was awarded a Ph.D. from Lancaster Institute of the Contemporary Arts, Lancaster University.  www.louiseannwilson.com

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