About

📌 Please email earlymodernloneliness [at] gmail [dot] com for the recordings of these papers. A selection of these papers, in addition to two commissioned chapters, will be published in Hannah Yip and Thomas Clifton, eds, Writing Early Modern Loneliness, which is under contract with Palgrave Macmillan. 📌


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Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, public health experts worldwide have been concerned about a loneliness epidemic. This has wider ramifications within the academy too. How might we better support unaffiliated scholars who may feel that they are writing in isolation without the support of a community of colleagues? How might one feel ‘lonely’ even within an institution? And how could our understanding of ‘loneliness’ in early modern prose and poetry deepen our perception of social isolation for scholars and writers today? Building upon important work on the spatial, material and religious dimensions of solitude in late medieval and early modern Europe (Enenkel and Göttler, eds, Solitudo (Brill, 2018)) and ongoing research at Queen Mary, University of London (‘Pathologies of Solitude, 18th–21st Century’), this two-day online symposium, taking place on 2930 June 2021,  aims to explore expressions of loneliness and isolation in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century writings. Please see our original Call for Papers here.


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29 June 2021

 

08.30–09.20*

 

Introduction

 

Thomas Clifton (University of Birmingham) and Hannah Yip (University of Regina)


The Introduction will start at 09.00am BST, but please feel free to sign in using the Zoom link from 08.30am BST.

 

 

09.20–10.30

 

Keynote

 

Naomi Pullin (University of Warwick), ‘The Pleasures and Pains of Solitude and Sociability in Early Modern Britain’


Chair: Hannah Yip (University of Regina)

 

 

10.30–10.50

 

Break

 

 

10.50–12.40

 

Isolated Queens


James Taffe (Durham University), ‘But she to be a Quene, and creuely handeled as was never sene: Anne Boleyn and her gentlewomen in the Tower of London


Michele Piscitelli (University of Birmingham), ‘Beholding and contempling [sic] what she is: The Origin of Elizabeth I’s Translation Talent and Faith During a Lonely 1544’


Birgitte Breemerkamp (Independent), ‘“God Has Punished Us”: The Queen of Bohemia’s Exile in The Hague (1621–1661)’


Chair: Thomas Clifton (University of Birmingham)



12.40–13.30

 

Lunch

 

 

13.30–15.20 

 

Gender and Ambiguity 

Effie Botonaki (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki), ‘“I am like an owl in the desert”: The Experience of Isolation and Upper-Class Early Modern Women’

Marlene Dirschauer (Ludwig Maximilian University), ‘“My heart’s most secret thought”: The Loneliness of (Writing) Desire in Lady Mary Wroth’s Pamphilia to Amphilantus

Bronwen Price (Independent), ‘Still think on …: Retreat, Engagement and Agency in Mary Chudleigh’s Works’

Chair: Naomi Pullin (University of Warwick)

 

 

15.20–15.40

 

Break

 

 

15.40–17.30

 

Solitary Prophets

Jane Kingsley-Smith (University of Roehampton), ‘How Could/Should Shakespeare be lonely?’


Marlin E. Blaine (California State University, Fullerton), ‘God’s Lonely Milton: Prophetic Alienation and its Recompenses in Paradise Lost


Veronica Fernandes (University of São Paulo), ‘Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz’s Experiences: Studying Alone

Respondent and Chair: Amelia Worsley (Amherst College) 




30 June 2021

 

09.10–11.00

 

Loss


Andrzej Tadeusz Staniszewski (Jagiellonian University), ‘God Hath Laid His Hand on Me. Alienation, Death of Others and Negotiating Catharsis in Early Modern Poland’

Kirsteen M. MacKenzie (Independent), ‘Under the Shadow of Widowerhood and Single Fatherhood: Loneliness in the Diary of Alexander Brodie of Brodie’ [Read Kirsteen’s blogpost here]

Ruth Lévai (University of Miskolc), ‘“Un milieu entre rien et tout”: The Self-Alienation of the Human Consciousness in Pascal’s Pensées

Chair: Michele Piscitelli (University of Birmingham)

 

 

11.00–11.20

 

Break

 

 

11.20–12.40

 

Keynote


Helen Wilcox (Bangor University), ‘The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Believer: Isolation in Seventeenth-Century Religious Poetry’

Chair: Thomas Clifton (University of Birmingham)

 

 

12.40–13.30

 

Lunch


 

13.30–15.20

 

Religio-Political Dimensions 

Rosamund Paice (Northumbria University), ‘Isolation in the Interregnum: The Poetry of Thomas, Lord Fairfax’

Dewi Alter (Cardiff University), ‘Charles Edwards’ Afflicted Man’s Testimony and Nonconformist Loneliness in the Restoration Age of Persecution’

Andrew R. Murphy (Virginia Commonwealth University), ‘William Penn’s Some Fruits of Solitude: Public Disgrace and Private Consolation’

Chair: Peter Auger (University of Birmingham)

 

 

15.20–15.40

 

Break

 

 

15.40–16.50

 

Keynote

Jenni Hyde (Lancaster University), ‘Nor syng, nor to daunce alone: Precarity, Loneliness and the Early Career Academic’

Chair: Hannah Yip (University of Regina)

 

 

16.50–18.00

 

‘Precarity and Independence’ Roundtable (Jenni Hyde, Kirsteen M. MacKenzie, Bronwen Price, James Taffe)

 

Chair: Hannah Yip (University of Regina)


*All times British Summer Time (BST)



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Email: earlymodernloneliness[at]gmail.com

Twitter: @EMLoneliness




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