CFP: The Monster Conference

Friday 29 June 2018, Saturday 30 June 2018, Bishop Grosseteste University, Lincoln

(Conny Stuart Hall Building)

The Monster Conference is a two-day, interdisciplinary conference, hosted by Bishop Grosseteste University in Lincoln, celebrating the afterlife and reception of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein in the year of the 200th anniversary of its publication.

Confirmed Keynoters: Angela Wright (Professor in English Literature, University of Sheffield), Marc Hanheide (Reader in Computer Science, University of Lincoln)

The continuing fascination with all things Monsters is partly due to the critical and popular reception of Shelley’s creature, termed a “new species” by its ambitious but over-reaching creator who thinks of himself as a scientist. The creature’s life is bodged from the start. The goal of this conference is to examine the legacy of Shelley’s novel as well as the different incarnations of monsters in contemporary research and teaching contexts. Attempting to explain the appeal of the story offers a unique opportunity to promote dialogue between disciplines.

The title of this conference is deliberately left ambiguous to allow for an interdisciplinary exploration of monstrosity and the monstrous. These concepts apply, in the first instance, to social and cultural threats; i.e. to behaviours and (visual) qualities which are deemed socially and culturally unacceptable because they are perceived as amoral or unimaginable. The afterlife and reception of Frankenstein not only brings many opportunities for academic research to intersect with popular culture, but also brings into focus pertinent theoretical and methodological challenges relating to how monstrosity and the monstrous get taught at universities and in schools.

The organisers welcome proposals for papers (20 minutes) and panels (three 20-minute papers) as well as teaching workshops (30 minutes) from a range of disciplines. Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Gothic Studies
  • Reception Studies (afterlife of Frankenstein)
  • ‘Monsters’ as a metaphor (Monstrosity, the Monstrous)
  • Monsters in Literature written for children and/or young adults
  • Monsters in visual culture and performance art
  • Horror Movies for adults and/or for children and/or young adults
  • The Post-human, technology and robot-human interaction
  • Disability Studies
  • Wellbeing
  • ‘Monsters’ in teaching contexts
  • Popular Culture

Abstracts of up to 300 words along with a short biographical note (100 words in the same Word document) should be sent to sibylle.erle@bishopg.ac.uk by 31 January 2018. Ideas for poster presentations are also welcome, particularly from postgraduate students. All proposals will be anonymously peer-reviewed.

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