Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York


June 4-7, 2009
Fordham University,
Lincoln Center,
New York, NY
To escape is the greatest of pleasures; street haunting in winter the greatest of adventures. Still as we approach our own doorstep again, it is comforting to feel the old possessions, the old prejudices, fold us round; and the self, which has been blown about at so many street corners…, sheltered and enclosed…. And here—let us examine it tenderly, let us touch it with reverence—is the only spoil we have retrieved from all the treasures of the city, a lead pencil.  
                           --Woolf, “Street Haunting” (1927)

seems clothed in radiant silver. The air here is about a thousand times clearer than the air in England. There is not a shred of mist or a wisp of fog: everything shines bright. The City of New York, over which I am now hovering, looks as if it had been scraped and scrubbed only the night before. It has no houses. It is made of immensely high towers, each pierced with a million holes
                           --Woolf, “America, Which I Have Never Seen” (1938)

Program Highlights

Keynote address by progressive journalist and essayist Rebecca Solnit. Rebecca Solnit is the author of numerous books, including Hope in the Dark (2004), Wanderlust: A History of Walking (2001), and River of Shadows: Eadweard Muybridge and the Technological Wild West (2002), which won the National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism. She is a recipient of the Lannan Literary Award and a grant from the Guggenheim Foundation.

Plenary talks

·  Tamar Katz, Brown University, Pausing, Waiting

· Anna Snaith, Kings College London, The Years, Street Music and Acoustic Space

· Jessica Berman, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, "You Then": Three Guineas, The Spanish Civil War, and the Challenge of the Home Front

special events

A staged reading of "Vita and Virginia" starring acclaimed New York actresses Laila Robins and Alison Fraser and directed by Matthew Maguire. (Alison is also a current Fordham University English major.) Thursday, June 4th, 8:00, Pope Auditorium, 113 W. 60th St. Tickets are $15.

The Stephen Pelton Dance Theater in collaboration with the band Princeton on an evening of  dance and music. Friday, June 5th, 8:00, Pope Auditorium, 113 W. 60th St. Tickets are $20.

Before the banquet, Katherine Lanpher, host of Barnes and Noble’s acclaimed Upstairs at the Square, will moderate a conversation with Susan Sellers, author the new novel Vanessa and Virginia; Kris Lundberg, actress and founder of the Shakespeare's Sister Theater Company, and Dr. Ruth Gruber, feminist and activist and the author of Virginia Woolf: The Will to Create as a Woman. Saturday, June 6th, Pope Auditorium, 113 W. 60th St. Free to conference registrants.

On-site one-day registration will be available for $45/day (cash or check only). All are welcome to attend: the Virginia Woolf Conference welcomes common readers, students, and professors alike.

Anne Fernald will teach aweek-long intensive 3-credit graduate course associated with the conference (June 1-7, 2009). Click here for more information.

Our book exhibit will be run by
Bluestockings, the Lower East Side feminist collective bookstore. This year’s silent auction will benefit Girls Write Now, a local nonprofit that pairs NYC high school girls with women writers as mentors. Some of the girls and their mentors will be reading at a concurrent session.

Conference Organizer:
Anne Fernald (  

For an abbreviated conference schedule click here. For the complete schedule, including presenters' names and paper titles, click here.

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