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Paris 2010

Date: June 10-11, 2010
Place: Paris, France
Venue: Université Paris Diderot

About the Conference

Our theme was Women under Napoleon, with keynote talks from Professor Frédéric Ogee of the Université-Paris Diderot and Professor Peter Sabor, from the Burney Centre at McGill University. There were five Panels looking at Female Journalists and the Revolution; Fashion, Dress, and Empire; The Wanderer; Madame de Staël and the women who rebelled; and Women and Education. We also had a dramatised performance by Hester Davenport and Karin Fernald of readings taken from women writers on the Revolution.

Burney's work was the inspiration, but we also used the conference to promote Anglo-French relations (papers will be in both French and English, with translated abstracts available), and to set Burney's work in the context of other women writers of the period, both French and English. How do her diaries and journals compare with journalists like Mary Wollstonecraft and Helen Maria Williams, who travelled to the French capital in the early 1790s to see for themselves what "revolution" meant? Why was she so unwilling to make the acquaintance of Madame de Staël even in Paris, once she had left behind the stuffy mores of English society? What role did these women writers have in the development of a post-revolutionary aesthetic?

(Excerpted from The Burney Letter 15.1 (Spring 2009))


Thursday, 10 June

9:30-9:45 Registration and coffee

9:45 Welcome from Sophie Vasset (Université-Paris Diderot) and Kate Chisholm (The Burney Society)

10:00-11:00 Pascal Dupuy (Université de Rouen)
"Napoleon through British and French caricatures (1799-1815)"

Chair: Kate Chisholm

11:00-11:30 Coffee

11:30-1:00 Panel 1: Life and Death under Napoleon

Annette Kobak (biographer)
"Life, or death, under Napoleon: Germaine de Staël's 1812 dilemma"

Flora Fraser (biographer)
"Pauline Bonaparte: procuress for her brother the Emperor Napoleon?"

Katie Gemmill (McGill University)
Frances Burney's Madame de Souza: a novel story

Chair: Conrad Harper

1:00-3:00 Lunch
(Chez Marianne, 2 rue des Hospitalières Saint Gervais - included in registration fee)

3:00-4:00 Panel 2: Les Journalistes et La Révolution

Nancy Johnson (SUNY, New Paltz)
"Mary Wollstonecraft: Dispatches from France"

Elizabeth Eger (King's College, London)
"Salon culture and national identity in the age of revolution: cross-Channel connections"

Chair: Peter Sabor

4:00-4:30 Tea
4:30-5:30 Panel 3: Fashion and the Body

Sophie Vasset (Université Paris-Diderot): Spas: medicine and leisure in the 18th century; Ariane Fennetaux (Université Paris-Diderot): Underpinning the Empire Sophie Vasset (Université Paris-Diderot)
"Spas: medicine and leisure in the 18th century"

Ariane Fennetaux (Université Paris-Diderot)
"Underpinning the Empire"

6:00 Human Wishes: a performance of Samuel Beckett's short play by students of the Institut Charles V, directed by Sophie Vasset. Followed by Drinks.

8:00 Dinner at a nearby restaurant
(La tête d'ailleurs, 20 rue Beautreillis - optional, 45 euros each, including wine)

Friday, 11 June

10:00-11:00 Peter Sabor (McGill University)
"Madame d'Arblay, Parisienne: new light on Burney's years in France"

Chair: Sophie Vasset

11:00-11:30 Coffee

11:30-1:00 Panel 4: Madame d'Arblay, the Wanderer

Margaret Anne Doody (University of Notre-Dame, Indiana)
"Rêveries d'une promeneuse solitaire, or Juliet's walk through the world in Burney's The Wanderer"

Tara Ghoshal Wallace (George Washington University)
"Dividing Life and Text: Wollstonecraft in The Wanderer"

Elles Smallegoor (Universiteit van Amsterdam)
"'What I may now, perhaps, venture to style my literary career': Frances Burney's The Wanderer and the 'making' of the professions"

Chair: Lorna Clark

1:00-2:30 Lunch (sandwich buffet at the Institut Charles V; price included)

2:30-3:30 Panel 5: Burney, Women, and the Season of Democracy

Helen Cooper (Bournemouth University)
Women With and Without Men: an examination of the wives and widows in Burney's novels

Catherine Dille (independent scholar)
Burney and education in the season of democracy

Chair: Nancy Johnson

3:30-4:00 Tea

4:00-5:00 'Truly terrible and tremendous': English women writers and the French Revolution

Dramatised readings by Karin Fernald and Hester Davenport

5:00-5:30 Conclusions

Discussion led by Sophie Vasset and Kate Chisholm

6:00 Conference Reception (Institut Charles V)

8:00 Dinner at Restaurant Marty, 20 avenue des Gobelins (optional: 45 euros each, including wine)


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