CFPs and Events: Consuming Gothic, Scottish literature, folk horror, Frankenstein, fungal Gothic, monsters

Some forthcoming CFPs (conferences and edited collection) and events:

1. CFP: ‘Consuming the Gothic’ Conference

University of Sheffield and online, 29 November 2023.
Deadline 21 August 2023.

How is consumption reflected in Gothic literature, film, and art? Is it always monstrous, or can the way we consume forge a sense of community? What does consuming in relation to the Gothic mean to us today?

This conference will feature panels and talks, as well as a creative writing workshop, run by Leonie Rowland (Manchester Metropolitan University). If you’d like to engage with the conference theme from new perspectives and try your hand at producing a short creative piece, then this is for you.

2. CFP: World Congress of Scottish Literatures

University of Nottingham, 3-7 July 2024
Deadline: 31 October 2023

While the fourth World Congress does not have a specific theme, our scope is transnational, and we would especially welcome papers on subjects that reflect the specific context of the Congress in Nottingham: the relationship between Scotland and England from earliest times to the present, a relationship which has had profound implications for the entire world, and which is a significant relationship in literatures in Scots, Gaelic, English, French and Latin from earliest evidence to contemporary production. 

3. CFP: ‘Don’t keep the Wicker Man waiting’: Folk horror 50 years after The Wicker Man

Dukes Theatre/Lancaster University, 27 October 2023
Deadline: 31 August 2023.

2023 marks the fiftieth anniversary of perhaps the most influential folk horror film of all time, Robin Hardy’s The Wicker Man. Long regarded as a cult curiosity, Hardy’s iconic film changed the template for British horror, and fifty years later is finally achieving the scholarly attention it deserves. This symposium, timed to coincide with the Dukes Theatre’s annual Dark Dukes festival, aims to assess the film’s legacy, from the rise of folk horror in the 1970s to the so-called folk horror revival in the 2010s and beyond. It will examine The Wicker Man within its broader intellectual, social and historical contexts, asking why this particular film made such a mark on the cinematic landscape and how it continues to inspire filmmakers, writers, artists and musicians.

4. CFP (edited collection): American folk horrors

Deadline: 29 October 2023.

This collection of essays will join the scattered critical essays that address American folk horror and will enter the conversation about distinctive ‘American’ folk horror traditions.[1] Crucially, ‘American’ will be interpreted as broadly as possible, to consider the variegated traditions of folk horrors in the Americas (Canada, Mexico and Central and South America). The collection will also take up the ways in which ‘American’ folk horror inevitably has global tentacles, as other national folk horror productions become critical to the American tradition and the American culture industry shapes other national folk horror productions. 

5. Event: Shifting Realities: Myth and landscape in Alan Garner’s novels

The Bell, London, 7.30 pm BST, 29 August 2023.

Alan Garner has been exploring creatively the landscape of his native Cheshire for over 60 years; his fictional landscape is a country in which fantastic creatures from mythology erupt into the mundane world, communication between dimensions is possible in a supernatural multiverse and events proceed through the operation of repeated actions played out across generations, articulated through folktale, myth and story, as Garner takes his cue from the quantum universe and the overarching constellations above Alderley Edge. Sue Terry, who lives 40 minutes away from Alderley Edge and is working on a book on Garner’s fiction, explores the shifting nature of reality that emerges through the interplay of history, folklore and landscape within Garner’s early novels, The Weirdstone of Brisingamen, The Moon of Gomrath, Elidor and Red Shift.

6. Event: Vindication for Mary: 200 years Frankenstein

People’s Museum, Somers Town, London (and on line), 11 August 2023. 19:00 – 21:00 BST

Celebrate the Publication of Frankenstein in Mary Shelley’s own name with a special evening – celebrating online across countries and with a walk to atmospheric St Pancras old churchyard.
A Friday evening to remember from Somers Town birthplace of Mary Shelley to Mary’s tomb in the beautiful old St Pancras Churchyard.

Event is in person and online in collaboration with Clair Obscur Theatre company whose play CONCEPTION: Mary Shelley – The Making of a Monster is currently touring.

Professor Esther Leslie of the People’s Museum will give a short reading online, as will the performers.

7. Event: Visual Aesthetics of Folk Horror, Tanya Krzywinska

The Viktor Wynd Museum, Zoom lecture (on line), 26 October 2023, 8:00 pm – 09:30 pm BST

Character, theme and narrative are often centralised in the literature on Folk Horror; but what of its visual aesthetics? Can we trace Folk Horror aesthetics within older painting traditions and styles? The concern of this talk is to explore relationships between the Folk Horror of film, TV and videogames, and landscape painting. I will focus most intently on Gustav Courbet’s late landscapes and Andrew Wyeth’s work; along the way other forms of painting will provide touchpoints within this investigation of the way that folk horror translates its anti-pastoralism and pessimism into its visual sightlines. I will focus therefore on Folk Horror’s concern with the otherness of the landscape, nature, failed/misguided agency, and rural culture, arguing that an inherent pessimism drives Folk Horror’s ‘jamming’ of normative bucolic representations and therein subverting man’s surety of sovereignty over nature. In seeing Courbet’s anti-human animism and Wyeth’s rural othering backwards through the lens of Folk Horror, I seek to widen the scope of what we now regard as Folk Horror.

8. Event: Mushroom Language: A Fungal Gothic

The Lowry, Salford, 25-26 October 2023

MUSHROOM LANGUAGE: A FUNGAL GOTHIC is about the cycles that shape us – eruption, reproduction and decay. It’s about role-playing the lichen love stories, spore shoot-outs and truffle siren songs found in our forests.

In an eerie and funny homage to folk horror, two human performers absorb and mimic ‘mushroom language’ through ritual and power dynamics. Who are these creatures, and what are the mushrooms trying to tell them? Dreamlike conversations and movement sequences are underpinned by original music from composer Hannah Miller (of the Moulettes) and playful design by Rūta Irbīte.

9. Event: Monsters in the Nineteenth Century

Durham University, Free online event via Zoom, 31 October 2023, 9:45 am – 5:00 pm CET

With the publication of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818), Richard Marsh’s The Beetle (1897), and Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1897), monsters became a staple of nineteenth-century literature. But their hold on the nineteenth-century imagination runs far deeper. [. . .] This online workshop, co-hosted by CNCSI and the Dark Arts Research Group at the University of Copenhagen, will feature a series of talks exploring the role played by monsters in the nineteenth century, investigating how their uncanny corporeality subverts dominant discourses and how therefore we might understand the monster as a valuable tool in uncovering hidden epistemologies in the study of the nineteenth century and its legacies.

About William the Bloody

Cat lover. 18C scholar on the dialogue and novel. Co-convenor OGOM Project
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