2022 Symposium

Catharine Maria Sedgwick Symposium:

Two Centuries of Sedgwick

The Red Lion Inn, Stockbridge, Massachusetts

June 8-11, 2022 (Wednesday to Saturday)

Announced 26 Oct. 2021

The Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society invites submissions for its ninth symposium, Two Centuries of Sedgwick, celebrating the bicentennial anniversary of the beginning of Sedgwick’s professional writing career in 1822.

The symposium will be held June 8-11, 2022, at the Red Lion Inn in Sedgwick’s picturesque hometown of Stockbridge, Massachusetts—just down the street from the Sedgwick family’s historic home. The town and the surrounding Berkshire Mountains region of western Massachusetts and northeastern New York supplied settings for Sedgwick’s first two novels and many of her shorter works. Her immediate family and their descendants were prominent citizens of the region who have made important contributions in the fields of law, politics, education, and the arts from the revolutionary era to the present day.

Gretchen Murphy, Professor of English at the University of Texas-Austin, will serve as the keynote speaker for the symposium. Murphy is the author most recently of New England Women Writers, Secularity, and the Federalist Politics of Church and State (Oxford, 2021). Her other works include Shadowing the White Man’s Burden: U.S. Imperialism and the Problem of the Color Line (NYU Press, 2010) and Hemispheric Imaginings: The Monroe Doctrine and Narratives of U.S. Empire (Duke UP, 2005).

The organizers invite proposals for papers that address any aspect of Sedgwick’s life and works, the works of Sedgwick’s contemporaries, or the Sedgwick family’s ties to the Berkshire region. They particularly encourage papers on the following topics:

  • the reception, interpretation and appreciation of Sedgwick’s works over time
  • Sedgwick’s first novel, A New-England Tale (1822)
  • Sedgwick’s second novel, Redwood (1824)
  • Strategies for teaching the works of Sedgwick and her contemporaries
  • Nineteenth-century U.S. women’s literature in the digital age

Proposals of no more than 250 words should be sent to Jenifer Elmore at Jenifer_Elmore@pba.edu by December 15, 2021.

NOTE:  All proposals that were originally accepted for presentation at the 2020 Sedgwick Symposium in Schenectady, New York (which was postponed and eventually cancelled because of the pandemic) will be accepted for the 2022 symposium.