The North American Society for the Study of Romanticism (NASSR), in association with the British Association for Romantic Studies (BARS), announces a conference featuring transatlantic participation and themes, to take place in NewYork City's cultural center. The conference themes have been selected to represent a broad spectrum of approaches to Romanticism. Our title is intended to encompass both the diverse cultural sites of the field as well as its formal and linguistic manifestations. To support these themes, we are planning a wide array of theatre performances, museum exhibits, and special tours. We have also secured a variety of housing options in the midtown Manhattan area, including conference discounts at midtown hotels as well as inexpensive dormitory rooms at the Lincoln Center campus of Fordham University.
In featuring the "cultural sites" of Romanticism, the conference will also be highlighting the rich field of Romantic Theatre, Spectacle, and Performance. As a special feature of the program, we will be presenting two modern-world premier theater performances from the era. The first is Thomas Lovell Beddoes' Death's Jest Book in a version adapted by Jerome J. McGann--who will also present a plenary lecture on the performance. The play is an astonishing pastiche combining Gothic spectacle, Romantic dream-vision, and Jacobean revenge tragedy. As Beddoes'masterwork, it also incorporates some of his most famous songs, and casts a new light on the evolution of what Byron called "Mental Theatre." The second play to be performed will be Joanna Baillie's Count Basil, an enormously popular drama dealingwith issues of courtship, infatuation, the male gaze, and the position of women in the public sphere. This professional production will be presented by the Horizons Theatre, an award-winning company directed by Leslie Jacobson. The conference will also feature the first Keats-Shelley Association Lecture, sponsored by one of the most influential and longstanding organizations in the field. In addition, the Keats-Shelley Association will be sponsoring several special sessions on Antiquarian Book Collecting, Library Culture, The History of the Museum, and The Private Collection.