CFP: Boredom avant la letter in early modern England (5/15/08; RSA 2009)

by Jessica C. Murphy

Boredom avant la lettre in Early Modern England RSA Los Angeles 2009

The origins of boredom as a category of experience for English men and women have largely been traced to the mid-eighteenth century. However, individuals much earlier expressed their tiredness with the world as is, their dissatisfaction with everyday life. Medieval moralists understood “acedia” as a spiritual state signaling an absence of caring and apathy. The French word “ennui” seemingly crossed the channel with the returning Royalists in 1660. This panel seeks papers that explore early modern English writers or artists concerned with the mundane side of everyday life and/or objects. Potential topics include: melancholy and daily life, material culture and “boredom,” the new philosophy and novel perceptions of disaffected individuality, or distinctly apathetic expressions of political deracination.

Abstracts and brief CV’s attached as Word documents by May 15 to