Date: Friday 8th-Saturday 9th March 2013
Full programme (PDF File)
This conference, held in the Gothic mansion at Strawberry Hill, west London, interrogated the many and varied cultures of the Gothic that were largely set in train by the owner of the mansion, Horace Walpole, in the mid-eighteenth century. As Walpole’s projects well exemplify – an aesthetic rebellion against a classical orthodoxy, which nonetheless looked implicitly to the restoration of some former social order – Gothic’s cultural poetics have always been difficult to place politically.
To what degree have Gothic tendencies in Literature, Art, Architecture and Screen Media been participants in, adjuncts to, contesters of, or alternatives to cultural and political mainstreams, and how might such relationships be assessed by historians and critics? If Gothic was the Enlightenment’s naughty, child, to what extent is its rebelliousness mental or political, and is it ultimately co-opted by the order that it appears to resist?
This was a multi-disciplinary conference, and papers were given on questions in the fields, amongst others, of literature, screen media, art, architecture and popular culture. Participants were given the chance to see Horace Walpole’s Gothic mansion, now resplendent in its recently-renovated state, and dined in Walpole's long gallery during the conference. Presenters were asked to make papers accessible to a non-academic audience, for the large number of interested amateurs who attended.
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Senior Lecturer in English
St Mary’s University College
T: +44 (0)20 82404124
Community Development Officer
Strawberry Hill House
268 Waldegrave Road
T: +44 (0)20 8744 1241