Welcome to c19
C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists, is the first academic organization dedicated to nineteenth-century American literary studies. The third biennial conference of C19, on the theme of "Commons," will take place at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in March 2014. The website for the 2014 conference is available here.
The 2014 conference welcomes inquiries into any aspect of U.S. literary culture—broadly conceived—during the long nineteenth century, including those that bring insights from visual, sound, or performance studies into conversation with literary and textual studies. Our conference theme is “Commons.” The Commons has a contested history in nineteenth-century America. At its simplest, “Commons” constitutes a mutually held resource (lands, goods, communal labor, intellectual property, civic values). It refers to shared political, economic, social, and cultural practices that may seem at odds with the period's investment in individualism and privatization. In selecting the theme of Commons, we seek papers and sessions that identify collective sites of mutuality and contestation, whether literary, historical, material, methodological, disciplinary, or conceptual. We also wish to acknowledge the challenges and limits of the Commons addressed by nineteenth-century thinkers—conformity, intolerance to dissent, unacknowledged exclusions, and mob mentality.
This conference continues the project begun in 2010 at Penn State, “Imagining-A-New-Century,” which inaugurated C19′s series of biennial conferences, animating conversations about imagination, textual production, aesthetics, community formation, and ethical democracy. C19 also publishes a journal, J19, whose first issue appeared in April 2013. J19 provides a forum for disseminating, debating, and implementing methodologies for the intra- and inter-disciplinary study of the long American nineteenth century (1789–1914).