The OVSC welcomes abstracts for papers, panels, workshops, and roundtables that examine Shakespeare’s representations of group(s) as well as proposals that examine how Shakespeare’s works have animated groups over time. We hope to see proposals that come to these issues from a broad range of perspectives and approaches.
In addition to the many ways that Shakespeare’s works explore the search for individual identity, the plays and poems also concern themselves with group dynamics: family, friendship, alliance, faction, race, gender, nation, mob. These cohere and collide in early modern literature in ways still relevant to our time. Characters balance their senses of belonging to place and time such as bloodlines and birthplaces against abstract senses such as citizenries and faiths and even these borders are revealed as porous and unstable. They travel to new locales and negotiate the preservation or loss of old identities, with the assumption of or resistance to new ones. As importantly, for centuries, the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries have inspired imitation/adaptation/incorporation (sometimes rejection) of what they view on stage into their own group identities. In his time, Shakespeare collaborated with and copied from his contemporaries, but after 1660, acting troupes reintroduced his plays into their repertories or adapted them. Today, some actors are designated as purely Shakespearean actors.
Travelers become Shakespearean throngs in Verona; immigrants bring with them worlds of culture, influencing and being influenced by what they bring and what they find. But Shakespeare as cultural symbol has been used to foster faction, competition or exclusion of group identity. English speakers become “we few, we happy few.”
Curricula commonly require (some do not) the study of Shakespeare. Fans flock to Shakespeare in the Park and wear neckties to their offices striped with witty and knowing quotes. Activist Shakespeareans community-build through their essays and public speeches. Academics form conferences like the OVSC or societies that claim Shakespeare’s work was by someone else.
Presenters may submit their work for consideration by the editors of the Selected Papers of the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference. https://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/spovsc/
The conference is open to graduate students for regular sessions, and to undergraduate students for roundtable discussions. Both graduate students and undergraduate students are encouraged to submit papers for The Rick Smith Memorial Prize competition to Professor Hillary Nunn at firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, May 17.
Please send abstracts of 250-500 words to Joseph Sullivan at email@example.com. Early acceptance deadline for abstracts ls Friday, March 1. The final deadline for abstracts has been extended to Monday, May 6, 2019.