ENSFR is pleased to be involved as collaborating organisation in the conference “The American Short Story: New Horizons”, the second annual conference of the Society for the Study of the American Short Story, organised by Oliver Scheiding at the University of Mainz. Plenary speakers are Lorraine López (Vanderbilt University) and Kasia Boddy (University of Cambridge). The full programme can be found here.Read More →

Proposals are invited for a conference dedicated to the novels and short stories of British writer, Sarah Hall. The conference will be attended by Sarah Hall herself and papers delivered at the conference will be considered for inclusion in an edited collection to be published in Gylphi’s ‘Contemporary Writers’ series. The conference is hosted by the University of Leuven and being organised by Elke D’hoker (KU Leuven, Belgium) and Alexander Beaumont (York St John University, UK). It will take place at the Leuven Irish college (http://www.leuveninstitute.eu/). Please send a 300-word abstract for a 20-min paper, along with a 100-word biographical note, to Elke D’hoker (elke.dhoker@kuleuven.be) and Alexander BeaumontRead More →

The fourth ENSFR conference will take place in Lille, France. Proposals are invited (in French or English) that explore the relation between short fiction and desire across different periods and genres, including flash fiction, the novella and short story cycles. As a concentrated and intense form of prose writing, short fiction lends itself very well to representations of desire. As Sarah Hall says, “The form is very good at unzipping the mind’s fly.” Think of Katherine Mansfield’s “Bliss” (1918): “For the first time in her life Bertha Young desired her husband;”or of J. G. Ballard’s “The Subliminal Man” (1963), where hypnotic techniques of advertising turnRead More →

Twentieth-Century British Periodicals: Words and Art on the Printed Page, 1900-1999 4 July 2017 Museum of English Rural Life, University of Reading, Redlands Road, Reading, UK Current scholarship on twentieth-century periodicals is moving beyond the study of the ‘little’ magazine and avant-garde publications. Many mainstream and specialist periodicals, including tabloids, broadsheets, illustrated newspapers, illustrated magazines, fashion magazines, ‘slick’ magazines, women’s magazines, art periodicals, trade and specialist periodicals, pulps, reviews, and political and campaigning magazines have yet to receive sustained critical attention. This interdisciplinary one-day * conference, coordinated by Dr Kate Macdonald, University of Reading, and Emma West, Cardiff University, will bring together scholars and collectorsRead More →

The Fifth Biennial John Updike Society Conference Faculty of Philology, University of Belgrade, Serbia – June 1 – 4, 2018 THE FIRST CALL FOR PAPERS The Fifth Biennial John Updike Society Conference will be the first one outside the United States of America, and it will take place in Serbia. John Updike visited Belgrade in 1978—it was then the capital of Yugoslavia and now it is the capital of Serbia. Updike also visited Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, which was then one of the six constitutive republics of Yugoslavia. In both cities Updike gave important interviews for magazines and TV stations. Papers on any aspectRead More →

The American Short Story: New Horizons Johannes Gutenberg-University, Mainz, Germany October 5-7, 2017  Program coordinator: Oliver Scheiding  Organizing Committee: James Nagel, Olivia Edenfield, Elke D’hoker, Jochen Achilles, Dustin Anderson, Damien Schlarb Throughout its history, the American short story has been praised either as a highly polished gem or condemned as literary fast food. Despite such rise-and-fall predictions, the short story has always been a demanding form. Its narrative economy in terms of time and space records decisive, intimate moments of life that give the American Short Story a broad social resonance. As such, the short story offers a vibrant field of research. There is aRead More →

Short Fiction: Co-texts and Contexts University of Leuven (KU Leuven), 4-5-6 May 2017 Since the emergence of the modern short story as a distinct literary form in the second half of the nineteenth century, many critics and writers have sought to decide what it is exactly that distinguishes the short story from longer fiction, such as the novella or the novel – Is it length? Conciseness? A specific thematic concern? Or a particular stylistic feature? The matter has not yet been settled. Perhaps we need to look to more circumstantial, material elements for a pragmatic answer to that question. Indeed, one could argue that oneRead More →

CONSTRUCTING COHERENCE IN THE BRITISH SHORT STORY CYCLE 15-16 October 2015 Johannes Gutenberg University (Mainz, Germany) Patrick Alasdair Gill (Mainz) and Florian Kläger (Würzburg) While the American short story cycle has recently been the object of extensive critical discussion, the same can hardly be said of its British counterpart. Still, thematically unified short story cycles would appear to constitute an established feature of the British literary landscape: recent specimens include Graham Swift’s Learning to Swim, Salman Rushdie’s East, West, Julian Barnes’s Cross Channel, Adam Thorpe’s Shifts, Sara Maitland’s Moss Witch, A. L. Kennedy’s What Becomes, and Kazuo Ishiguro’s Nocturnes. By reference to these and otherRead More →

Call for Papers Haunting in Short Fiction and Its Adaptations 20-21 November 2015, University of Angers, France (in collaboration with Edge Hill University, University of Leuven, University of Le Mans, and University of Nantes) There is a long tradition of haunting in short fiction, often appearing in the form of ghost stories, folk tales, fairy tales, and legends. Short narrative indeed appears to embrace the supernatural. Elizabeth Bowen explains, for example, in the preface to A Day in the Dark and Other Stories that while she uses “the supernatural” in her short stories, she considers it “unethical’ to do so in a novel. In “TheRead More →