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D.H. Lawrence Society of North America

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Conferences & Calls

Please contact the webmaster with info on upcoming Lawrence related conferences, panels, and calls for papers.  Your assistance is appreciated in helping to keep these notices up-to-date.  Past MLA Lawrence session paper titles are now archived on our website as well as information regarding past International Lawrence Conferences.

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Call for Papers

34th INTERNATIONAL D. H. LAWRENCE CONFERENCE

D. H. LAWRENCE AND THE PEOPLE

UNIVERSITE PARIS NANTERRE

Centre de Recherches Anglophones

26-28 March 2020

 

“The people, being subject to the laws, ought to be their author.”

                            Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract, chapter 6

“Creators were they who created peoples, and hung a faith and a love over them: thus they served life.”    

  Friedrich Nietzsche, So spake Zarathustra, chapter 11

The people is a more or less discreet or threatening presence in Lawrence’s fiction, a kind of collective character with its psychology and narrative function, or a topic for discussion between protagonists. It is also an important theme in the author’s non-fiction, “the political problem of the collective soul” as Gilles Deleuze puts it in his introduction to “Apocalypse.” One immediately thinks of the essay “Education of the People,” but the focus should not be exclusively on this controversial text. “The people,” that of the contemporary working class, is a theme of speculation from Lawrence’s first writings to the last. Strikingly, it is the subject of both Lettie’s letter to the narrator at the end of his first novel, The White Peacock (1911), and of Mellors’ letter at the end of Lady Chatterley’s Lover(1928). Even where Lawrence is tempted to romanticise exotic, primitive, or past peoples untouched by industrialization and modernity, we may perceive oblique references to his own people.

In Kangaroo, the socialist leader Struthers tells Somers insistently, “you’re the son of a working man. You were born of the People,” many Lawrence characters are “of the people,” so was Lawrence. His proximity with the working class in his youth definitely accounts for his lifelong interest in popular culture and the people’s living conditions and, sometimes, for a fleeting touch of nostalgia which never precludes critical distance. Being both an insider and an outsider in relation to the working class people, he never seemed to believe, like the aristocratic Tolstoy, in a possible regeneration through the immersion in the people or a “turning to the people.” His readings of philosophical works, those of Plato, Locke, Rousseau, Carlyle, Nietzsche, among others, helped him to shape his vision of the relation of the people to authority. His personal change of status, his contacts with other countries, the war and the social upheavals of the period, also contributed to the deepening of his reflection on the people as a sociopolitical entity and to the development of what we may term his social philosophy. Though “the people” is ever present in Lawrence’s writings, he himself was at great pains to define what a people is. When asked to write a play for “A People’s Theatre,” he wondered facetiously about several possible meanings of the term in his “Preface to Touch and Go”: “Not The people: il popolo, le peuple, das Volk […] Plebs, the proletariat […]. What people? Quel peuple donc?”  What people in Lawrence? And who does he write for? Both the polysemy of the term and the fact that the writer was himself “of the people” or “from this people” makes for complexity and probably renders these questions to which he responded with characteristic ambivalence more interesting ones.

The following is a non-exclusive list of possible topics of inquiry: Lawrence as a commentator of contemporary social theories, the will of the people, the people and the law, the social structure of primitive and modern societies, ethics and politics, leadership, the sense of superiority, colonized peoples, patriotism, intellectual influences and antagonisms, coherence or evolution of Lawrence’s social philosophy.

The deadline for proposals is 10 November 2019. Priority will be given to proposals received before the deadline, but we will continue to accept proposals until 20 November 2019.

Please send a 200 word abstract to Ginette Roy (ginette.katz.roy@gmail.com)  and Cornelius Crowley (cornelius.crowley@parisnanterre.fr)

Conference fee: 80 euros

Link to our journal Etudes Lawrenciennes:  http://www.revues.org/10111

 

 
 

Call for Papers

Lawrence’s 1920s: North America and the ‘Spirit of Place’

15th International D.H. Lawrence Conference, Taos, New Mexico, July 12-17, 2020

Lorenzo and Frieda arrived in New Mexico in mid-September of 1922, with Dorothy Brett, at the invitation of Mabel Dodge Sterne (who would marry Tony Luhan in 1923, becoming Mabel Dodge Luhan) and stayed for about two years. The Ranch property where they lived from 1924 was given to them by Mabel and was the only property they ever owned during their marriage. Most of St. Mawr was written there, and The Plumed Serpent was begun. Frieda died in New Mexico in 1956 and is buried on the ranch. New Mexico, then, is a magical place in the journey of Lawrence and Frieda, where he wrote some of his most powerful work and where both of them felt a sense of belonging. Lawrence was prolific in the last decade of his life and arguably his talents were at their zenith. This conference encourages papers on all aspects of Lawrence’s life and work, but especially studies pertaining to his last decade and to his imaginative engagement with North America.

The 15th International D.H. Lawrence conference—while open to all considerations of Lawrence’s work and life--is especially interested in proposals reassessing Lawrence’s work 100 years earlier, in the 1920’s; in exploring Lawrence’s engagement with Mexico, New Mexico, North America, and ideas of democracy and “the open road”; in studying the immeasurable influence Lawrence’s criticism had on the study of American literature as late as the 1950’s and 60’s; in examining interconnectivity between artists—dance, ritual, music, visual arts as well as writing—and aspects of modernism across the arts; as well as interdisciplinary studies that deepen our sense of Lawrence’s engagement with Native peoples and cultures.

Papers are welcome from Lawrence scholars, graduate students, and the public. Papers should last no longer than 20 minutes and will be followed by 10 minutes of questions.

If you would like to contribute, please send an abstract of 350 words to the Executive Director, Dr. Nanette Norris, c/o dhlconf2020@yahoo.com by midnight on October 31, 2019. Submissions will be assessed by the Academic Program Committee detailed below, and responses will be issued by December 15, 2019. The abstract should include the following information as part of the same file (in either MS Word or pdf format):

  • Your name, postal address, telephone number, and email address
  • The name of the institution (if applicable) at which you are registered
  • A short bio

The conference is being held at the Sagebrush Inn, Taos, New Mexico. The conference fee is $350 USD for the week (there is an early-bird special), and includes all meals and transport to special events. The conference website may be found here: dhlconf2020.org.

 

 

 
 
 
Call for Papers
Lawrence's Language
SAMLA 2019, Atlanta, November 15-17, 2019
 
Proposals are welcome on any aspect of D.H. Lawrence, although preference will be given to those addressing the SAMLA 91 theme of "Languages: Power, Identity, Relationships."  The conference will be held in Atlanta on November 15-17, 2019.  If you would like to participate, please send a 200-word abstract, brief bio, and A/V requirements to Adam Parkes, University of Georgia, at aparkes@uga.edu.  Deadline: May 1.
 
Deadline for submissions: May 1, 2019