CfP – Gender and Modernity in Central Europe, 05/2008, Ottawa

Gender and Modernity in Central Europe: The Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and its Legacy

Zeit: May 16-18, 2008
Ort: University of Ottawa
Deadline: September 15, 2007

Since the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy’s dissolution in 1918, its memory and legacy have been, by turns, suppressed, contested, and continuously re-evaluated in the countries emerging in its wake. This conference aims to make a contribution to Habsburg studies by exploring the complex connections between modernity and gender while also raising awareness of the field’s importance in Canada.

We seek to bring together scholars who explore the history and continuities of the debates on gender and modernity in Central and East-Central Europe. One of the focal points of fin-de-siècle modernist debates in Austria-Hungary concerned gender, the re-shaping and re-configuring of sexual roles and identities, of femininities and masculinities. These debates, often linked to discussions of cultural crisis and decadence, reveal the anxieties and identity crises inherent in a multi-ethnic empire. They have taken on a new dimension in the post-Communist period and continue to impact gender roles.

We invite social and gender historians as well as historians of literature, philosophy, psychoanalysis, and the visual and performing arts. We especially welcome interdisciplinary approaches and contributions exploring the transnational and trans-border networks of Austria-Hungary, both during and after the Monarchy’s historical existence, as well as contributions focusing on the Monarchy’s Southern and Eastern border areas. By casting a geographically and methodically wide net, we hope to emerge with a better understanding of notions of gender and modernity spawned in Austria-Hungary and their lasting impact and resilience into the 21st century.

The conference will take place at the University of Ottawa between May 16-18, 2008.

It is co-sponsored by the Wirth Institute for Austrian and Central European Studies, University of Alberta. The conference organizers will also apply for a conference grant to the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. While we may be able to contribute to participants’ travel costs, we still encourage them to seek funding from their home institutions. The conference languages will be English and French. We invite suggestions for individual presentations as well as panels of three presentations.

Please send individual abstracts (max. 500 words) and suggestions for panels to both conference organizers:

Agatha Schwartz, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, University of Ottawa:
Fax: 1-613-562-5715
Judith Szapor, Department of History, Glendon College, York University:
Fax: 1-416-487-6852

Deadline for receiving the abstracts and panel proposals: September 15, 2007.

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