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Expertise Constructed: Didactic Literature in the British Atlantic World, 1500-1800
Cambridge, July 1998


Call For Papers Expertise Constructed: Didactic Literature in the British Atlantic World, 1500-1800 9-10 July 1998 Newnham College, Cambridge, UK
This multi-disciplinary conference will explore English-language didactic literature in the early modern Atlantic world. Building on, but shifting the focus away from, conduct literature scholarship, the conference will range widely over the genre, encompassing all types of didactic and instructional literature from vade mecums of bee-keeping to grammars, from "compleat" cookery courses to universal manuals on arithmetic. How do these texts engender and/or reflect the practices in society? And how are these societies, and the individuals who consumed such texts, represented? We wish to attract scholars who employ a variety of critical perspectives, and are engaged in research in all disciplines concerned with the early modern period. Our endeavour is to establish a stimulating mutual dialogue and bring together previously disparate material towards a larger common project; it is hoped that papers from the conference will be published in an edited volume. We invite proposals for papers (25 minutes long) from students engaged in post-doctoral research, as well as from more established scholars. We are scheduling substantial discussion sessions and we seek offers from those who wish to act as commentators for these sessions. The following list of themes and topics for sessions is for guidance only: readership profiles audience reception publishing strategies circulation and distribution illustration didactic rhetoric methods of teaching and styles of presentation texts and their relationship to 'professional' practice constructions of expertise representations of social difference, status and societies TIMETABLE: Friday 19 December 1997: Paper proposals (about 300 words) to be submitted. Email submissions are encouraged. Friday 22 May 1998: Copies of papers to be submitted for circulation to commentators. Final abstracts to be submitted for pre-circulation to all conference participants who have registerd by this date. CONTACT: Natasha Glaisyer, Darwin College, Cambridge, CB3 9EU, UK. Sara Pennell, Newnham College, Cambridge, CB3 9DF.