CFP: “Transcendentalism: Men and Women Conversing”

In a collaborative call from the Henry David Thoreau, Margaret Fuller, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Louisa May Alcott Societies, we invite proposals for papers to be presented at the next Thoreau Gathering in Concord, MA (July 11-14, 2019) on dialogues between men and women of the Transcendentalist movement. When Emerson looked back at Transcendentalism, in “Historic Notes of Life and Letters in New England,” he recalled men and women who read adventurously, became friends, formed a club for conversation, and launched  a magazine. They were talkers as well as solitaries. Across the apparent divide of gender, what did they have to talk about?

Papers might closely study an individual dialogue or consider the broader dynamics of two or more writers within or alongside the movement. All conversation was not face-to-face; instead, in keeping with the Gathering’s 2019 theme, “Nature, Technology, and the Connected Life,” it was also made possible by the post office that delivered letters, the railroad that enabled travel, and the print industry that opened authorship in books and periodicals.

The following list suggests only some areas of possibility:

  • Mary Moody Emerson’s exchange of letters with Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Mary Moody Emerson’s conversation with Henry David Thoreau, as reported by Thoreau
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson’s exchanges of letters and opinion with Margaret Fuller
  • Fuller editing Thoreau as editor of the Dial
  • Much more on the Dial: perhaps Caroline or Ellen Sturgis’ poems and their reception, or any dialogues within or between issues
  • Fuller’s social vision in re Orestes Brownson’s or Theodore Parker’s or W.H. Channing’s
  • Fuller’s Conversations, with vs. without male participation
  • Elizabeth Palmer Peabody and Bronson Alcott as educators at the Masonic Temple school
  • Peabody publishing Thoreau’s “Civil Disobedience” in Aesthetic Papers
  • Thoreau and the women of his family as antislavery activists
  • Interactions across gender at Brook Farm or Fruitlands
  • Louisa May Alcott and her father
  • Louisa May Alcott’s fictional or poetic representations of Emerson and/or Thoreau
  • Lydia Maria Child on the movement from New York: definitions and satires; her own practical Transcendentalism (urban reform, antislavery , Croton water) vs. Emerson’s or Thoreau’s or ?
  • Fictional refractions of Emersonian thought by Elizabeth Oakes Smith, Mary Gove Nichols, Margaret Sweat, or ?
  • Caroline Dall as sponsor of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s “Woman” at the 1855 Boston women’s rights convention
  • Acknowledgement of or resistance to Emerson or Thoreau or another male transcendentalist by your choice of feminist author or activist
  • Dall’s history of the movement in “Transcendentalism in New England” (1895)
  • The gender divide and its overcoming in history or criticism of the Transcendentalist movement

This will be a peer-reviewed panel. Please send one-page proposals and short c.v.’s to Phyllis Cole (pbc2 [at] psu [dot] edu) or David Greenham  (David [dot] Greenham [at] uwe [dot] ac [dot] uk) by Nov. 26. Decisions will be made by Dec. 15. Inquiries are welcome at any point.

Heidelberg Conference Recap

This post was written by Margaret Fuller Society member, Website Editor, and contributing author, Christina Katopodis.

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Photo taken in Heidelberg, Germany at sunset by Christina Katopodis

Fullerites gathered with Emersonians and Thoreauvians in Heidelberg, Germany on July 26-29, 2018 for the “Transcendentalist Intersections: Literature, Philosophy, Religion” Conference hosted by the University of Heidelberg and sponsored by the Ralph Waldo Emerson Society, the Margaret Fuller Society, and the Anglistisches Seminar and Center for American Studies at the University of Heidelberg.

Dan Malachuk, President of the Emerson Society, writes: “In late July, more than seventy scholars from around the world gathered at the University of Heidelberg for four balmy days of intense cross-disciplinary dialogue about some of the most pressing issues in Transcendentalist studies.  Perhaps the largest conference ever held on this subject, “Transcendentalist Intersections: Literature, Philosophy, Religion” was the vibrant conclusion to a four-year collaboration of the University’s Anglistisches Seminar and Center for American Studies, the Margaret Fuller Society, and the Emerson Society.  Reflecting at a closing session, participants recalled especially fruitful conversations about the continued indispensability of archival research, recovering “minor” figures, assessing intra-movement conflicts as well as confluences, whether to de- or re-transcendentalize the movement, interrogating as always its nationalist character, and remembering the periodicals, including the Dial, whose subtitle was also the conference’s and—let us hope—a continuing prompt for more such intersections.”

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Photo by Todd Richardson

Laura Dassow Walls, in her keynote address, called to mind Fuller telling Thoreau that nature is no more his until he is more hers. This sentiment of embrace, exchange, and openness characterized many of the papers, dialogues, and exchanges throughout the conference. Walls crafted a beautiful and inspiring argument for what she calls the “parahuman” (as opposed to “nonhuman” or “posthuman”), reminding us that there really is no “not-me,” that we are all connected, and that we are the very criminals we are searching for in our present climate crisis. Responding to a question about how to reconcile ourselves with Emerson’s use of the word “Nature” given recent ecocritical scholarship that has problematized that term (I am thinking of Timothy Morton especially), Walls pointed to the specificity of each instance, moment, and context of Emerson’s use of the word “nature” and called for us all to remember to be very specific when we use it ourselves.

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Photo by Christina Katopodis

On the next day, Fullerites and Emersonians gathered for panels on Alcott, Fuller, Emerson, and Thoreau. Russell Sbriglia’s paper on Fuller, Hegel, and concrete universality discussed Fuller’s work to harmonize the particular with the universal. Sbriglia used the “+” in LGBTQ+ to demonstrate the relevancy of Fuller’s argument that there is no humanity unless we are all a part of it; we are not free until all of us are free. Sbriglia suggested that Fuller’s assertion that Man cannot be realized without Woman is not an addition but a transformative process that affects the whole. You can read a full abstract of Sbriglia’s talk here.

There were so many beautiful papers to feed the mind at the conference. To touch on some of those about Margaret Fuller, I will do my best to quickly introduce them. For more details, you can read the full abstracts in the embedded links below.

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“Transcendental Feminisms” Panel, photo courtesy of Marina P. Kizima

There was a diverse range of subjects covered. One vibrant thread of discussion could be traced between Phyllis Cole‘s paper on Fuller and Socialism in Paris and David Robinson‘s paper on Fuller, Channing, and Fourierism. Mollie Barnes called our attention to the importance of sculpture as it captures historical movement and inspiration into action. Leslie Eckel presented her work on utopias focusing on failure. Christina Katopodis presented her sound studies work on “Pulse and Polarity” in Fuller and Emerson. Marina P. Kizima focused on the religious aspects of Fuller’s work and Denise Kohn focused on Fuller and women’s suffrage. In addition to covering Fuller’s Woman in the Nineteenth Century, there were papers on Summer on the Lakes such as Monika Elbert‘s and on Fuller’s letters such as Mario Bannoni‘s presentation on three letters of Fuller’s recently found in Italy.

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“Transcendental Forms” Panel, photo courtesy of Marina P. Kizima

Some papers focused on translation, such as Fuller’s translation of Conversations with Goethe, and Adrienne Perry asked us to think about the ethics of Transcendental translation. Other papers focused on periodicals, such as Brigitte Bailey‘s paper on The Dial and print culture; Sonia Di Loreto presented a paper on Fuller’s “A Daughter of Italy” (1848) and transnational intersections in the People’s Journal. In her paper on Emerson and George Sand, MFS President Charlene Avallone urged us all to read more of George Sand’s work. Sarah Wider read a beautiful paper on Caroline Sturgis, who drew for Ellen Tucker Emerson when she was a little girl. David Greenham presented a paper on Emerson’s cognitive topology, looking at his metaphors not as literary devices but as working out ways of thinking. His diagram of light refraction on the eye was very impressive. There really was too much wonderful work than could be captured in a single event recap and do it justice.

At the conference, the Margaret Fuller Society was able to conduct a meeting to discuss current business and spend time getting to know new members and share scholarship. 

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Margaret Fuller Society Business Meeting, photo courtesy of Marina P. Kizima

 

 

Emerson Society 2019 Awards Announcement

Awards Announcements

2019

 The Ralph Waldo Emerson Society announces four awards for projects that foster appreciation for Emerson.

*Graduate Student Paper Award*

Provides up to $750 of travel support to present a paper on an Emerson Society panel at the American Literature Association Annual Conference (May 2019) or the Thoreau Society Annual Gathering (July 2019). Submit a 300-word abstract to David Greenham (david.greenham@uwe.ac.uk) by January 11, 2019. Abstracts should address the 2019 CFPs posted at emersonsociety.org. 

*Research Grant*

Provides up to $500 to support scholarly work on Emerson. Preference given to junior scholars and graduate students. Submit a confidential letter of recommendation, and a 1-2-page project proposal, including a description of expenses, by April 1, 2019.

*Pedagogy or Community Project Award*

Provides up to $500 to support projects designed to bring Emerson to a non-academic audience. Submit a confidential letter of recommendation, and a 1-2-page project proposal, including a description of expenses, by April 1, 2019. 

*Subvention Award*

Provides up to $500 to support costs attending the publication of a scholarly book or article on Emerson and his circle. Submit a confidential letter of recommendation, and a 1-2-page proposal, including an abstract of the forthcoming work and a description of publication expenses, by April 1, 2019. 

Send Research, Pedagogy/Community, and Subvention proposals to:

Prentiss Clark (Prentiss.Clark@usd.edu) and Kristina West (k.j.west@reading.ac.uk)

Award recipients must become members of the Society; membership applications are available at http://www.emersonsociety.org.

American Literature Association 2018 Conference Recap

This post was written by Margaret Fuller Society member and contributing author Michael Schrimper.

From May 24-27, 2018, members of the Fuller Society gathered in San Francisco at the Hyatt Regency Embarcadero for the 27th Annual conference of the American Literature Association. Over the course of the four days, the Society held two panels, a successful business meeting, and one dinner with a lovely view of the Bay.

On Friday afternoon’s panel, “Margaret Fuller: In the Classroom and Beyond,” which was chaired by Larry Reynolds (Texas A&M University), the first presenter was Holly Dykstra (Laredo Community College). In her paper “Using Fuller to Teach Fuller: Creating Agency and Security,” Dykstra outlined the ways in which Fuller serves as something of a role model for her students (some of them first generation or undocumented) at her college near the border of Mexico. Dykstra examines the concepts behind Fuller’s Conversations—“immersing others in challenging academic situations, encouraging shared knowledge, and spreading education to those who lack agency”—as a way for her students to not only relate to Fuller, but potentially see Fuller’s will and work as models for their own. Callie Gallo (Fordham University) presented “Teaching Margaret Fuller, Fanny Fern, and the Nineteenth-Century Press in the Wake of #MeToo,” drawing startling connections between nineteenth-century scenes of male aggression and sexual violence and news stories unfolding in our contemporary climate. Lesli Vollrath (University of Houston) presented “Elemental Bodies: Mapping the Materialist Cartographies of Margaret Fuller’s ‘Leila’ and Kate Chopin’s The Awakening in a Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Classroom,” providing an overview for teaching Fuller’s and Chopin’s texts through critical frameworks ranging from Hélène Cixous’s “The Laugh of the Medusa” (1976) to Stacy Alaimo’s New Materialist concept “trans-corporeality.” These frameworks, Vollrath suggests, create relational possibilities for the female body in its environment. Nanette Rasband Hilton (University of Nevada, Las Vegas) also gave a paper concerned with Fuller’s “Leila,” “Praxis of Duality: The Sisterhood of Fuller’s ‘Leila’ and DuBois’s ‘Atlanta.’” Hilton’s paper demonstrated the potential of a reader’s own ipseity to promote “multiple social identities with awareness of crosscutting memberships.” At this notably well-attended panel, Hilton led a moment of silence to honor the memory of prodigious Fuller scholar Professor Jeffrey Steele.

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Photo courtesy of Katie Kornacki

On Saturday’s panel, “Margaret Fuller: Out of New England,” chaired by Society Treasurer Noelle Baker (Independent scholar), Simone Puelo (University of Connecticut, Storrs) presented “Of Good and Noble Aspect: Margaret Fuller, Catholicism and Pius IX (1847-1850),” tracing Fuller’s ambivalent views of Catholicism and Pius IX, as well as her criticism of theocratic monarchy and the Papal State. Puelo sees many of Fuller’s critiques of the Church as “emancipatory” in nature, exposing the institutional injustices common Catholics faced. Clemens Spahr (Mainz University, Germany) presented “Romantic Revolutions: Cosmopolitan Radicalism in Margaret Fuller’s Dispatches from Europe,” which reads Fuller’s European dispatches for Horace Greeley’s the New-York Tribune as “not a refutation of her earlier Transcendentalism,” nor a “simple continuation” of that project, but, rather, a “rewriting” of her Romanticism. Katie Kornacki (Caldwell University) gave a paper entitled “‘The Morning Star of Margaret Fuller’: The Woman’s Club Movement and the Legacy of Fuller’s Conversations,” outlining Fuller’s continuing influence in women’s clubs across the United States. Michael Schrimper (Independent scholar) presented a transatlantic study, “Who’s Afraid of Margaret Fuller?: Literary and Biographical Connections Between Virginia Woolf and Margaret Fuller,” delineating the ways in which Fuller, in “The Magnolia of Lake Pontchartrain” in particular, anticipates the high Modernist feminist narratology of Virginia Woolf’s experimental 1917 sketch, “Kew Gardens.”

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Photo courtesy of Jana L. Argersinger

Prior to Saturday’s panel and business meeting, Fullerites gathered for a Friday evening dinner at Sens, a warmly-lit Mediterranean restaurant overlooking the Bay Bridge. Before partaking in a meal including grilled Spanish octopus and dry-aged rack of lamb, Society members watched as Treasurer Noelle Baker presented the first inaugural Phyllis Blum Cole Award for Social Service to its eponymous original recipient. In giving reasons for her receiving the award, Baker cited Cole’s: forging a relationship between the Society and the Margaret Fuller House of Cambridge, Massachusetts, a non-profit organization propagating Fuller’s social ideals; and her vital role as President of the Society, which, in her three-year tenure, saw Cole expanding membership, increasing funds, generating a Society newsletter, renewing panel status at MLA, establishing a new Society website, and revising Society governance structure, among other feats. Society members watched with admiration as Baker presented Cole with a plaque engraved with Fuller’s words from her 1844 New-York Tribune piece, “Thanksgiving:” “No home can be healthful in which are not cherished seeds of good for the world at large.” A similar plaque will be presented, to quote the speech written by Baker and current Society President Charlene Avallone, “every three years to a Society Member” whom the Executive Council “recognizes as having worked in some significant way to promulgate the social ideals advanced by Margaret Fuller.” In addition to the plaque, the award it is to take the form of a donation to the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House.

To top off the occasion in honor of Professor Phyllis Cole, there were cheers of congratulations, along with heartfelt wine toasts, all around.

Announcing the Phyllis Blum Cole Award for Social Service

At the recent American Literature Association 2018 Conference, Margaret Fuller Society Members Jana L. Argersinger and Noelle A. Baker presented Past President Phyllis Cole with the Inaugural Phyllis Blum Cole Award for Social Service. Read their speech presenting Cole with the award below.

Noelle Baker, Phyllis Cole, and Jana Argersinger
Left to Right: Noelle Baker, Phyllis Cole holding award, and Jana Argersinger; Photo courtesy of Katie Kornacki

“Before we turn to other forward-looking matters, we should acknowledge our Past President for her inspiring leadership and immense drive, which have brought the Fuller Society into its second quarter-century.

As most of you know, Phyllis Cole in her three-year term directed a remarkable renovation of the Society.  She leaves us a notable legacy:  a greatly expanded membership and enhanced bank-account; a new, exciting website; a stimulating newsletter; Society presence on social media; a revised governance structure that reflects the new roles required by all these renovations; and renewed status at the annual MLA Convention.

In what I may hazard is perhaps the achievement dearest to her heart, Phyllis established the Society’s outreach into social action by forging a connection with the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House in Cambridge, MA.  You will recall that this community-based nonprofit with a century-old mission is housed in Fuller’s girlhood home.  It serves to provide a wide variety of programs to underprivileged families and individuals in the community, while in the process serving as well to propagate Fuller’s social ideals.

To honor Phyllis‘s achievement and to keep the memory of it alive, the Executive Council has voted to establish the Phyllis Blum Cole Award for Social Service.  The award will be given every three years to a Society Member that the Council recognizes as having worked in some significant way to promulgate the social ideals advanced by Margaret Fuller.  It is to take the form of a donation to the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House and a plaque to the recipient, engraved with one of Phyllis‘s favorite quotes from Fuller, taken from her December 1844 Tribune piece “Thanksgiving”: “No home can be healthful in which are not cherished seeds of good for the world at large.” As Fuller suggests in this article, the authentic spirit of that holiday is embodied in ever-widening acts of kindness and charity; these acts, in Fuller’s words,  “depend upon the great circle” of family, neighbors, friends, and society. We thank Phyllis for setting the standard for our own circle.

It is my great pleasure to announce that the first recipient of this award is Phyllis Cole.”

Phyllis Blum Cole Award for Social Service
Photo courtesy of Katie Kornacki

Featured image of Phyllis Cole holding award courtesy of Jana L. Argersinger.

ALA 2018 in San Francisco, CA

Join us at the 2018 American Literature Association Conference in San Francisco, California, May 24-27, for two panels sponsored by the Margaret Fuller Society.

“Margaret Fuller: In the Classroom and Beyond” on Friday, May 25th, 2:10-3:30 PM

Chair:  Larry Reynolds, Texas A & M University

1.     “Using Fuller to Teach Fuller: Creating Agency and Security,” Holly Dykstra, Laredo Community College

2.     “Teaching Margaret Fuller, Fanny Fern, and the Nineteenth-Century Press in the Wake of #MeToo,” Callie Gallo, Fordham University

3.     “Elemental Bodies: Mapping the Materialist Cartographies of Margaret Fuller’s ‘Leila’ and Kate Chopin’s The Awakening in a Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Classroom,” Lesli Vollrath, University of Houston

4.     “Praxis of Duality: The Sisterhood of Fuller’s ‘Leila’ and Du Bois’s ‘Atlanta’,” Nanette Rasband Hilton, University of Nevada–Las Vegas. 

[The Margaret Fuller Society Business Meeting will be conducted on Saturday, May 26, at 2:10-3:30 PM.]

“Margaret Fuller:  Out of New England” on Saturday, May 26, at 3:40-5:00 PM

Chair:  Noelle Baker, Independent Scholar

1.     “Of Good and Noble Aspect: Margaret Fuller, Catholicism and Pius IX (1847-1850),” Simone Maria Puleo, University of Connecticut, Storrs

2.     “Romantic Revolutions: Cosmopolitan Radicalism in Margaret Fuller’s Dispatches from Europe,” Clemens Spahr, Mainz University, Germany

3.     “‘The Morning Star of Margaret Fuller’: The Woman’s Club Movement and the Legacy of Fuller’s Conversations,” Katie Kornacki, Caldwell University

4.    “Who’s Afraid of Margaret Fuller?: Literary and Biographical Connections Between Virginia Woolf and Margaret Fuller,” Michael Schrimper, Independent Scholar

You may also be interested in this panels with presentations on Fuller:

“‘A Choir of Resistance’: ‘Unruly’ Voices and ‘Nasty’ Women in American Literature” on Friday, May 25, at 5:10-6:30 PM

Chair: Elif Armbruster

1. “A Choir of Resistance: Margaret Fuller’s Network of Nasty Women in Woman in the Nineteenth Century,” Lesli Vollrath, University of Houston

2. “Nasty Women in the Press: Margaret Fuller, Fanny Fern, and the Pitfalls of Professionalization,” Callie Gallo, Fordham University

3. “‘A Peculiar Case’ of Women’s Writing in Elizabeth Stoddard’s The Morgesons,” Ki Yoon Jang, Sogang University (Seoul)

4. “The Unruly, Unmarried Black Woman Mimi Daquin of Walter White’s Flight,” Julie Anne Naviaux, University of Alabama in Huntsville

5. “Wandering Women and Queer Resistance in Djuna Barnes’ Nightwood,” Victoria Chandler, University of South Carolina

6. “Teaching the ‘Nasty Woman’: Facing Resistance in the Classroom,” Elif Armbruster, Suffolk University

The full program draft is available here.

Transcendentalist Intersections Conference Registration

Transcendentalist Intersections: Literature, Philosophy, Religion” will be held at the University of Heidelberg, Germany on July 26 – 29, 2018. This conference is sponsored by the Ralph Waldo Emerson Society, the Margaret Fuller Society, and the Anglistisches Seminar and Center for American Studies at the University of Heidelberg.

The conference registration fee is $100 USD (80 euros), which includes the reception. To pay your registration fee using PayPal, please click on the button below.

Reception Only ($20)

Student and Non-Academic Entry ($50)

Margaret Fuller Panel at ASA

Margaret Fuller scholars and society members will be at the American Studies Association conference this weekend in Chicago, IL.

Margaret Fuller’s Politics of Dissent

Sat, November 11, 8:00 to 9:45am, Hyatt Regency Chicago, Burnham, Third Floor West Tower

Chair: Sonia Di Loreto (University of Torino, Italy)

Panelists:

William Bond (Northeastern University)

Dorri Beam (Syracuse University)

Johnatan D. Fitzgerald (Northeastern University)

Sarah Payne (Northeastern University)

Abstract

In the light of this year’s theme, “Pedagogies of Dissent”, for ASA 2017 we would like to propose a round-table on the conjuncture of politics, intellectual activity, and education in the work of Margaret Fuller and some of her friends and collaborators (especially Giuseppe Mazzini and Cristina di Belgiojoso) in the revolutionary Europe of the 1840s.

Centering the roundtable on our collaborative, multilingual Digital Humanities project, the Margaret Fuller Transnational Archive, we would like to address the intellectual genealogies of revolutionary thought. These intellectual networks of exchange became visible in our research and in the construction of the archive. By portraying networks and clusters of publications involving Margaret Fuller and some of her correspondents in Europe, the archive helps to uncover how the intellectual militancy of these public figures was deeply invested in creating oppositional pedagogies. We will concentrate on specific articles published in the People’s Journal (London) in 1847 and in the New York Tribune in 1847-50, to reflect on educational models outside of well established educational institutions, such as, for example, Mazzini’s evening school for Italian boys founded in London in 1841, as well as Fuller’s observation that educational opportunities in England are increasingly “extended to girls,” as she writes, they “ought to be.”

While focusing on Fuller’s role in the exchange and circulation of revolutionary theory in mid-nineteenth-century Europe, we also aim to engage with Fuller’s transformation of genre-conventions in her letters to the Tribune. In particular, we will be examining Fuller’s breaking with the conventions of travel-writing and with the politics and aesthetics of landscape- writing in her accounts of travelling through Europe. In so doing, it is possible to consider Fuller a forerunner to the genre that would come to be called literary journalism.

We also intend to discuss different possibilities offered by digital platforms and archives, since the digital format is ideally suited to document, map, and visualize the scope and significance of networks across politically contested space and through time. Added to this, the digital platform decentralizes modern scholarship, reaching scholars who work in the U.S. and in Europe, as well as elsewhere. By using the collaborative and inclusive nature of our project (a transnational archive where scholars from different countries, and at different stages of their career work together), we would also like to engage in new models of political pedagogies, outside of national borders and institutional limitations.

Thank you to Sonia Di Loreto for providing the information for this post!

Image via TripAdvisor

ALA 2018 Call for Papers

The Margaret Fuller Society invites proposals for two panels at the American Literature Association 29th Annual Conference in San Francisco, CA, May 24-27, 2018.

Margaret Fuller: In the Classroom and Beyond

We invite submissions that address teaching Fuller in any academic context or in venues outside of the traditional classroom.

Margaret Fuller: Out of New England

We invite submissions that address such topics as:

–Fuller and the West

–Fuller and the East

–Fuller and regionalism

–Fuller and New York/Paris/Rome

–Fuller and transnationalism or cosmopolitanism

–Fuller and translation

We especially welcome proposals that approach Fuller along with other writers.

Please send a one-page proposal to Charlene Avallone (avallone000@gmail.com) by 15 January 2018.

Featured photo is of the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco, CA via Google Maps.

Fullerians at SSAWW in Bordeaux

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The Place de la Bourse at night

This post was written by Margaret Fuller Society First Vice President and contributing author Charlene Avallone. 

Conference director Stéphanie Durrans and her coworkers welcomed us this July to the Université Bordeaux Montaigne for the first international conference organized by the Society for the Study of American Women Writers, a gathering characterized by the hospitality and intellectual stimulation traditionally associated with the host nation.  Not surprisingly, Margaret Fuller was much in evidence–for among American writers, Fuller stands out as paradigmatic of the conference theme: Border Crossings.

Notorious in her own time for transgressing and confounding boundaries in her life and work, Fuller remains recognized for transcending confines.  She evaded restrictions on education and library access, preparing herself for an exceptional career that amalgamated roles as educator, public intellectual, translator, journalist, frontier and transnational travel writer, and theorist of (trans)gender.  Born into New England elite, she represented causes of immigrants and the poor and championed claims of human rights against state and social constraints.  A female pioneer in transnational cultural and political journalism, Fuller explored the possibilities of literary and political connections in her European travels.  Her writings, now issued in several nations and languages, often blur conventional boundaries between oral/literary discourse, male/female spheres, or popular/high genres of literature and philosophy.

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Panelists on the roundtable sponsored by the Fuller Society highlighted this liminal figure, examining:  Fuller’s literal and political translations of European writers (Kathleen Lawrence); her redefinition in her pedagogy and literary canon of the boundaries between women’s conversational culture/Socratic dialogue and imitative/original learning and writing (Christa Vogelius); her participation in multilingual epistolary networks that cross national, ideological, private/public, and genre boundaries (Sonia Di Loreto); her transformation of nationalist travelogue through her transatlantic reading and travel, deviation from normative masculine perspectives, and translation (Brigitte Bailey); and transnational reception history of her life and work (Marina Kizima).

On another panel, speakers analyzed Fuller’s self-conscious rhetorical strategies of revisioning as she confronted changing national borderlines and internal divisions, including over slavery (Mollie Barnes), and directed attention from Fuller’s connection to socialism to consideration of her thinking about property and its relation to revolution (Abigail Fagan). Together, they conveyed a nuanced sense of Fuller’s journalistic negotiations with radical political positions.

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The panel, 19th-Century Women Crossing Borders between Literature, Science, Politics and Welfare Issues: Margaret Jay Jessee, Abigail Fagan, and Mollie Barnes
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Many thanks to Brigitte Bailey (left, next to Sonia Di Loreto) for providing photos from the event!