Annual SEASECS Meeting – ‘Science and the Arts in the Long Eighteenth Century’

Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC, 3-5 March 2011

Proposals due by 1 November 2010

The 37th Annual Meeting of the Southeastern American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASECS) will be held 3-5 March 2011 at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC. The theme for the conference will be “Science and the Arts in the Long Eighteenth Century.” The deadline for submission of paper proposals and full panels is 1 November 2010.

The eighteenth century has sometimes been seen in the history of science as a quiescent period between the great advances made by the likes of Descartes, Newton, and Leibniz in the seventeenth century and Darwin in the nineteenth. As Roy Porter argues in The Cambridge History of Science (2003), however, the eighteenth century is an especially rich era of interdisciplinarity because of the prominence of humanists “in the dissemination of the sublime truths of the new science” (7). By the end of the century, Romantic artists began to reject the “truths” of science and to promote the arts as alternatives to rather than disseminators of science. Thus the eighteenth century represents a kind of golden era of cross-pollination before the arts and sciences were separated into distinct, sometimes opposing, disciplinary discourses.

We welcome proposals for papers and full panels that explore the relationships between the arts and sciences during the period, as well as topics that will complement or challenge the conference theme. We also invite topics, including individual papers and proposals for other panels and roundtables, which explore different aspects of the eighteenth century.

Abstracts of approximately 250 words for individual paper proposals should be sent to Byron R. Wells, Department of Romance Languages, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC 27109 (or electronically to  by 1 November 2010. Please include your academic affiliation or status as an independent scholar, as well as your physical and email addresses, with your submission. Submissions for complete panels should also be sent to the same address by 1 November 2010 and include a brief overview of the panel’s purpose, a short abstract of each paper, and the physical and email addresses of the session chair and of the presenters as well as their institutional affiliations or status as an independent scholar. Proposals for open panels and roundtables on a different theme should be received by 15 August 2010.

Plenary speakers for the conference will be Evan Bonds (Music, UNC-Chapel Hill), Felicity Nussbaum (English, UCLA), and Peter Reill (History, UCLA).

All conference activities, including sessions, receptions, and the traditional SEASECS luncheon will be held on the Wake Forest campus. Accommodations will be available in nearby hotels, and a shuttle service between these and the campus will be available. Conference participants must be members of SEASECS. To join the Society or renew your membership, go to A limited number of travel fellowships for graduate students will be available. The Society also awards two prizes of $300 each for the best graduate student papers presented at the conference. So mark your calendar, send us a proposal, and come to Winston-Salem for another great SEASECS event!