CFP: John Keats: Poet-Physician, Physician-Poet, 1815-1821

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The Keats Foundation announces its second bicentenary conference, to be held from the afternoon of Friday 1 until the evening of Sunday 3 May 2015 at Guy’s Hospital London. The conference marks the 200th anniversary of John Keats enrolling to study medicine at Guy’s Hospital in 1815.

Confirmed speakers include Druin Birch, Jeffrey Cox, Stuart Curran, Damian Walford Davies, Jenny Uglow, R. S. White.

The conference will be held on the 29th floor of Guy’s Hospital Tower Building - with extensive views of the City of London.

We will visit the surroundings of Guy’s Hospital, including the celebrated John Keats statue in the quadrangle. One of our receptions will be held in the Old Operating Theatre at Guy’s, giving participants an opportunity to gather around the operating table with glasses of wine. Our second reception and buffet-banquet will be held in private, wood-panelled rooms at the historic seventeenth-century George Inn – London’s only surviving galleried inn.

Call for Papers
Proposals for 20-minute papers are invited, under the broad heading of ‘John Keats: Poet-Physician / Physician-Poet’. We particularly welcome papers on the relation of Keats’s poetry, letters, life and times to any of the following:

  • Medicine / poetry and medicine
  • Romantic-era hospitals
  • Medical training
  • Surgery / dissection / anatomy
  • Prescriptions and the pharmacopoeia
  • Infection / disease
  • Tuberculosis / consumption
  • Healing
  • Women’s health
  • Medical texts
  • Wounds
  • Nerves
  • Mercury
  • Hypochondria
  • Melancholia
  • Hallucination and drugs

This list offers some starting points for presentations and is not intended to limit possible topics. For obvious reasons, however, all papers should have a Keatsian focus.

Please send 200-word proposals as an email attached document to the conference administrator, Hrileena Ghosh by 15 January 2015. Please ensure that your proposal is headed with your paper title, your name, institutional affiliation, and an e-mail contact address. Acceptances will be issued by 31 January at the latest; please let us know if you have a deadline for travel or funding.

Please note: the conference registration fee will be confirmed when Registration opens in January 2015, and is likely to be in the region of £150 (full rate)/£90 (postgraduates and unwaged), inclusive of the two receptions; £100/£50 conference attendance only. Lunches, coffees, teas, biscuits, cakes and other refreshments are all included, as are conference stationary and electronic resources. When submitting your paper proposal, please would you indicate whether you would like to attend the receptions. Every effort has been made to keep registration fees to a minimum. Travel and accommodation arrangements are left to delegates’ discretion.

Nicholas Roe (John Keats. A New Life)
Richard Marggraf Turley (Bright Stars: John Keats, Barry Cornwall and Romantic Literary Culture)
Sarah Wootton (Consuming Keats: Nineteenth-Century Representations in Art and Literature)

Preliminary announcement:
We hope that the 2016 Keats Foundation bicentennial conference will be held at John Keats’s Margate.