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e at the Victorian Popular Fiction Association (VPFA) are pleased to announce that we have released our final programme and that registration is now open. Our conference is running 14th-16th July, 2021, 1-10.30pm (BST) - elongated days to allow for our international speakers and delegates, but we encourage people to take regular breaks as needed.

The conference fee is only £25 for f/t staff, and £10 for postgrads/unwaged/precariat for the full 3 days. You can register your place here. And you can find out more about the VPFA here:

We are running our conference online via MS Teams, through the University of Greenwich, with papers uploaded in advance. The conference is then the live Q&A sessions, keynotes, reading group and training session. These are:


1. ‘Excluding the Maternal Body in Victorian Popular Literature’ Jess Cox (Brunel University London)
2.‘Energy Problems, SF and the Late-Victorian World’ Upamanyu Pablo Mukherjee (Warwick University)
3. ‘Radical Politics in the 1830s and 1840s’ Greg Vargo (New York University)

Reading Group

‘Against the Grain: Reparative Readings for Victorian Popular Fiction’ Hosted by Jesse Erickson (University of Delaware)

Training Session

‘Doing Things Digitally: An Introduction to Digital Resources and Text Mining Methods’ Hosted by Emily Bell (University of Leeds)


Wednesday 14th July (BST) 13:00 – 13:15 Welcome Hosts: Anne-Marie Beller, Ailise Bulfin, Janine Hatter, Erin Louttit and Andrew King

13:15 – 14:00 Panel 1: Rural (Room 1) Chair: Rebecca Nesvet

Claire Cock-Starkey, ‘The rebranding of the rural working-class in the nineteenth century: from exclusion to       inclusion’
Julia Kuehn, ‘Beyond the Great Divide: Rereading the City and the Country in Anthony Trollope’
Jesse Gauthier, ‘Sociopolitical Revolution in Christina Rossetti’s “Goblin Market”’

Panel 2: Social Problems (Room 2) Chair: Betty Hagglund

Annemarie McAllister, ‘A sideways look at the canon: the alternative world of temperance fiction’
Hollie Geary-Jones, ‘An Anthropological Figure: Classification, Categorization, and the Nineteenth-Century       Prostitute’
Sarah Wegener, ‘Echoes of Exclusion: Sounding the Outcast Child in the Works of Rosamund Marriott      Watson’

14:00 – 14:45 Panel 3: Victorians Reinterpreting History (Room 1) Chair: Betty Hagglund Susan Civale, ‘Ann Radcliffe, Vampire Hunter: An Exploration of Paul Féval’s Vampire City (1875)’
Dorothea Flothow, ‘Discarding the Licentious Past – Victorian Historical Novelists and the Restoration Period’
Sally Luken, ‘Time May Crown Her: Depiction of the Lady Macbeth Figure in Victorian Discourse’

Panel 4: Melodrama (Room 2) Chair: Ailise Bulfin Mariaconcetta Costantini, ‘Representations of African Slaves in Nineteenth-Century Melodrama’
Anne-Marie Beller, ‘Sensationalizing Slavery: Melodrama and Miscegenation in Mary Elizabeth Braddon’s The Octoroon’
Johanna Steiner, ‘Depictions of Femininity in Nineteenth-Century Stage Melodrama’

14:45 – 15.15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

15.15 – 16:00 Panel 5: Late-Victorian Gothic (Room 1) Chair: Billie Gavurin Jemma Stewart, ‘Floral favourites: bloom choices in the Victorian Gothic’ Janette Leaf, ‘The Excluded Beetle of Richard Marsh: An Outsider Because of Race, Religion and Species?’
Alyce Soulodre, ‘“No one but an entomologist would understand quite what he felt”: Eccentric Entomologists and Insect-Collecting Kinships in Arthur Conan Doyle and H. G. Wells’ Mystery Fiction’

Panel 6: Music (Room 2) Chair: Andrew King
Roger Hansford, ‘“This horrible Stave They howl”: John Callcott’s Settings of Supernatural Songs from The Monk’
Victoria C. Roskams, ‘“An Incongruous Bill of Fare”: Popular and Classical Music in Trilby’
Christian Gallichio, ‘“Love Came Down at Christmastime”: Pedagogical Purpose and Religious Devotion in Rossetti’s Christmas Poetry’

16:00 – 16:45 Roundtable (Room 1) “Undisciplining the Victorian Classroom”: Teaching Interventions on Caribbean Authors Panelists: Kira Braham, Heidi Kaufman, Breanna Simpson, and Indu Ohri Moderator: Adrian Wisnicki

16:45 – 17:15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

17:15 – 18:30 Keynote 1 (Room 1) Jess Cox (Brunel University, London) ‘Excluding the Maternal Body in Victorian Popular Literature’ Chair: Anne-Marie Beller

18:30 – 19:00 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

19:00 – 19:45 Panel 7: Global / Colonial (Room 1) Chair: Juliet Shields John Morton, ‘Popular Fictions of Emigration in 1850’
Rosie Blacher, ‘Making Sense: The Body and Communication in the Long Victorian Period’
Jessica Albrecht, ‘Religious and racial differentiations within the category of women in Miranda Canavarro’s writings’

Panel 8: Vampires after 1897 (Room 2) Chair: Beth Sherman Theadora Jean, ‘The Fin De Siècle Monster That Never Dies: Dracula In Neo-Victorian Adaptation’
Rachel Stewart, ‘The Vampire That Time Forgot: Inclusion/Exclusion of Florence Marryat and The Blood of the Vampire (1897) in Vampire Studies’
Michael A. Torregrossa, ‘The Count in Comics: Adaptations of Bram Stoker’s Dracula in Comics and Comic Art’

19:45 – 20:30 Panel 9: Theatre and Performance (Room 1) Chair: Dorotha Flothow Beth Palmer, ‘Ageing, Inclusion and Collaboration in the Career of Eliza Winstanley’
Christopher Pittard, ‘“A great dense semicircle”: Performing Magic in Max Beerbohm’s Zuleika Dobson’
Juliet Shields, ‘Including Theatre in the Novel: the Melodrama of Walter Scott and David Pae’

Panel 10: Canon Formation 1 (Room 2) Chair: Rebecca Nesvet Helena Esser, ‘Under Many Flags: Ouida’s European Cosmopolitanism’
Madeline Gangnes, ‘Imageless Imagetext: Illustration Excluded from Collected Late-Victorian Periodical Fiction’
Erica Haugtvedt, ‘Subculture, Counterculture, or Culture?: Victorian Penny Press Plagiarisms and Piracies, Histories of Transmedia and Fandom, and Class’

20:30 – 21:00 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

21:00 – 21:45 Panel 11: Beyond the New Woman (Room 1) Chair: Michelle Reynolds Huzan Bharucha, ‘Gender, Genre and Canonicity: Detecting the Second-Generation New Woman’
Leonie Jungen, ‘Into the Light: Emancipation and Scottish National Identity in Margaret Oliphant’s Kirsteen’
Agnes Strickland-Pajtok, ‘Inclusion and tolerance in Emma Orczy’s The Emperor’s Candlesticks’

Panel 12: Ellen Wood (Room 2) Chair: Mariaconcetta Costantini Maria Luisa De Rinaldis, ‘Metaphors of in/visibility and dynamics of gender in Ellen Wood’
Felipe Garrido, ‘Nomadic Subjectivities and Transnational Female Agency: Disruptions of Empire in Hariette Gordon Smythies’ and Ellen Wood’s Sensation Fiction’
Mary Elizabeth Leighton & Lisa Surridge, ‘“I would prefer a sandwich to the biscuit”: Pregnancy and Childbirth in Ellen Wood’s Lord Oakburn’s Daughters’

21:45 – 22:30 Panel 13: “Speaking of my oddity”: Inclusive Spaces in Nineteenth-Century Women’s Life Writing (Room 1) Panel Organizer and Chair: Rachel Friars Sarah E. Maier, ‘“Unburdening my mind on paper”: Linguistic Practice in the Diaries of Anne Lister’
Brooke Cameron, ‘Michael Field’s Queer Collaboration in Works and Days’
Emma McTavish, ‘“I shall always by thy own servant wife”: Filth, Class, and Sexuality in Hannah Cullwick’s Diaries’

Panel 14: Art (Room 2) Chair: Michelle Reynolds Emma Butler-Way, ‘Vilifying the Venus: Artistic Exclusion in Rhoda Broughton’s Not Wisely but Too Well’
Alex Round, ‘The Forgotten Pre-Raphaelite: Unearthing the life and works of Rebecca Solomon (1832-1886)’
Emma Horst, ‘Victorian Art as Politics: Lady Audley’s Pre-Raphaelite Portrait as an Expansion of Rancière’s The Distribution of the Sensible’

Thursday 15th July (BST) 13:00 – 13:15 Welcome (please use this time to log on, check your connections and say hello)

13:15 – 14:00 Panel 15: Genre Formation (Room 1) Chair: Anne-Marie Beller Tamara Wagner, ‘Excluding Household Hazards: How to Keep Home Safe in Victorian Print’
Anne Anderson, ‘Aesthetic Exclusivity: The Monks of Thelema and the emergence of the Aesthetic Novel’
Manon Burz-Labrande, ‘Redressing the status of long-excluded texts: the Neo-Victorian recovery of penny bloods and penny dreadfuls’

Panel 16: Science and Botany (Room 2) Chair: Joanne Knowles Alina Ghimpu-Hague, ‘Written in and out of fashion: storytelling, taxonomy, and amateur botany in the nineteenth century’
Ann-Marie Richardson, ‘“Reward the Accomplished Lady”: How female botanical illustrators of the 1860s utilised the colonised landscape to obtain entry into the Royal Society of London’
Arya Mohan, ‘Heterotopic Spaces and Evolutionary Narrative: Examining the Rhetoric of Liminality in Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species

14:00 – 14:45 Panel 17: Wilkie Collins (Room 1) Chair: Helena Ifill Kath Beal, ‘Class and the City: Wilkie Collins’s Basil and social exclusion in the new suburbs’
Anja Hartl, ‘Shame and Social In/Exclusion in Wilkie Collins’s No Name’
Michela Marroni, ‘“The Diary of Anne Rodway”: Wilkie Collins and the Repression of a Young Woman’s Voice’

Panel 18: Late-Victorian / Edwardian Supernatural (Room 2) Chair: Katerina Garcia Walsh Billie Gavurin, ‘Into myself’: Homoeroticism and internality in Algernon Blackwood’s The Centaur’
Emily Vincent, ‘Keys to the Ghostly: Domestic Servants, Nannies and Landladies in the Supernatural Fiction of Florence Marryat’ Emma Liggins, ‘“Vanished off the Face of the Earth”: The return of forsaken women in the 1890s Ghost Stories of Lettice Galbraith’

14:45 – 15:15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

15:15 – 16:00 Panel 19: Crime (Room 1) Chair: Kath Beal Samuel Saunders, ‘The Law and the Lamp-Post: The Police and Street-Lighting in Mid-Victorian Popular Crime Fiction’
Emilia Musap, ‘Reinventing the Excluded City in Richard Warlow’s Ripper Street (2012-2016)’
Kayley Thomas, ‘Gentlemen and Players in Crime, Cricket, and the Literary Marketplace: E.W. Hornung’s Raffles and the Importance of Being Amateur’

Panel 20: Global / Wider World (Room 2) Chair: Ailise Bulfin Preeshita Biswas, ‘Locating Method in His Madness: Traversing Anarchy, Crime, and Class Exclusions in Japanese Neo-Victorian Anime, Moriarty, the Patriot’
Patricia Frick, ‘Beyond the Sickroom: Inclusion, Exclusion, and Discourses of Illness in Maria Graham’s Travel Journals’
Rebecca Nesvet, ‘Internationalist Radicalism and Exclusion in The Sepoys, a Tale of the Present Indian Revolt (Reynolds’s Miscellany, 1858)’

16:00 – 16:45 Panel 21: Madness and/as Exclusion (Room 1) Chair: Alina Ghimpu-Hague Ruth Heholt, ‘Stark Mad and Stark Naked: The Debilitating “Fall” of Catherine Crowe’
Alessandra Serra, ‘“We are dangerous”: Excluding the Deviant Feminine Code in Neo-Victorian On-Screen Narratives’
Beth Sherman, ‘“Put Her Away. It’s Better for all of Us”: Female Madness as Exclusion in The Crimson Petal and the White’

Panel 22: Self-Help and Professionalism (Room 2) Chair: Janine Hatter Helen McKenzie, ‘Women of Genius and Women of Grub Street: Challenging the Division between Braddon and Grand’
Maria Juko, ‘“Adding Woman”: Jessie Boucherett’s Hints on Self-Help; A Book for Young Women’
Hye Hyon Kim, ‘You Are What You Speak: Speech and Social Acceptance in George Gissing’s New Grub Street’

16:45 – 17:15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

17:15 – 18:30 Keynote 2 (Room 1) Upamanyu Pablo Mukherjee (University of Warwick) “Energy Problems, Science Fiction, and the Late-Victorian World” Chair: Ailise Bulfin

18:30 – 19:00 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

19:00 – 20:30 Training Session (Room 1) “Doing Things Digitally: An Introduction to Digital Resources and Text Mining Methods”, Emily Bell (University of Leeds) Chair: Janine Hatter

20:30 – 21:00 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

21:00 – 21:45 Panel 23: Health (Room 1) Chair: Hye Hyon Kim Rosalind Crocker, ‘Institutionalisation, Incarceration, and Dissection: From Workhouse to Anatomist’s Table in E. S. Thomson’s Beloved Poison’
Anna Gasperini, ‘Unloving parents and incorporeal children: familial exclusion and corporeality in Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden (1911)’

Panel 24: Women Getting Things Done (Room 2) Chair: Erica Haugtvedt Helena Ifill, ‘A Man’s World: Charlotte Riddell’s Women of Business
Camilla Prince, ‘“A Fly on the Wheel” or a “Guardian Angel?” Ella D’Arcy’s creative ambivalence as assistant editor of The Yellow Book
Michelle Reynolds, ‘After Beardsley: The Inclusion of Women Illustrators in The Yellow Book

21:45 – 22:30 Panel 25: Queering the Victorians (Room 1) Chair: Emma Catan Molly Heaton, ‘The Woman I Am Trying To Imagine: William Sharp, Fiona Macleod, and Transphobic Critical Space’
Angela Du, ‘“I was a genuine boy”: Angelica Hamilton-Wells and James Miranda Barry in The Heavenly Twins’
Andrew King, ‘“Embarrassed by being mistaken for a woman”? Magic Gender, Two Ways: Selbit/Joad Hetep’

Panel 26: Women and Popular Periodicals (Room 2) Chair: Huzan Bharucha Jennifer Phegley, ‘Which Guests are Most Welcome?: Moving from Sala’s Conversational Club to Braddon’s Sensational Enterprise in the Welcome Guest
Betty Hagglund, ‘Scandal and calumny: Kate Marsden and the nineteenth-century popular press’
Leanne N. Page, ‘Snark: Gatekeeping in The Lady’s Newspaper, 1847-1856’

Friday 16th July (BST) 13:00 – 13:15 Welcome (please use this time to log on, check your connections and say hello)

13:15 – 14:00 Panel 27: Designing Gender (Room 1) Chair: Angela Du Emma Catan, ‘Gender inclusion in neo-Victorian literature: Rosie Garland’s The Night Brother
Alice Crossley, ‘Old is the New Young: Ageing Masculinity in Victorian Fiction’
Anne Korfmacher, ‘Remembering the Future – Queer Temporalities in Natasha Pulley’s Neo-Victorian Novels’

Panel 28: Haptics and Corporeality (Room 2) Chair: Mariaconcetta Costantini Isobel Sigley, ‘Luxurious Liberation: The exclusionary correlation between wealth and New Womanhood in Kate Chopin’s short story “A Pair of Silk Stockings” (1897)’
Natasha Audrey Anderson, ‘Between Inclusion and Exclusion: Immersive Embodiment in Wilkie Collins’ Fiction’
Salvatore Asaro, ‘Disability and exclusion in Sensation Fiction: the case of Ellen Wood’

14:00 – 14:45 Panel 29: Pleasure & Leisure (Room 1) Chair: Alina Ghimpu-Hague Joanne Knowles, ‘“Attractions for better-class visitors”: taste and distinction in 19th-century seaside brochures’
Sharon Murphey, “‘[N]othing of an improper character [should obtain] admission”: Garrison Libraries, and the Nineteenth-Century British Soldier’
Robert Laurella, ‘Knighthoods and Empty Benches: The Late-Victorian Culture Industry’

Panel 30: Urban Poverty (Room 2) Chair: Anna Gasperini Hayley Smith, ‘Ransoming childish sufferers from pain”: The Late-Victorian Campaign for Child Welfare’
Garth Wenman-James, ‘Arthur Morrison’s Mean Streets: Mapping and Linguistic Netherworlds in Slum Fiction’
Anita Turlington, ‘Communal Space and Spectacle in A Child of the Jago and The Wire

14:45 – 15:15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

15:15 – 16:00 Panel 31: Canon Formation 2 (Room 1) Chair: Kayley Thomas Adelle Hay, ‘“Like them, yet not with them”: Mary Ward’s legacy of exclusionary language in Anne Brontë discourse’
Jana Valová, ‘Criticism and Prejudice: The Issue of Canonicity and Neo-Victorian Works’
Abigail Moreshead, ‘Victober 2020: Democratizing the Canon with Social Media Reading Analysis’

Panel 32: Museums and Education (Room 2) Chair: Emma Liggins Marcus Hibbeln, ‘From Seeds to Subjects: The London Missionary Society, Religious Education for Africans, and the Civilizing Process in Southern Rhodesia, 1898-1923’
Jordan Kistler, ‘The Unstable Gothic Museum’
Daniel Gifford, ‘Whaling’s Exclusion from Chicago and the White City’

16:00 – 16:45 Panel 33: Queering the Neo-Victorian (Room 1) Chair: Anne-Marie Beller Aaron Eames, ‘Including Queensberry: Mike Tyson Mysteries and the Lavender Marquess’
Blake Overman, ‘“What the wicked actually practice”: Analyzing the Monstrous Queer in The Blood Spattered Bride’
Shannon Scott, ‘The Inclusivity of Neo-Victorian Horror in Emily Danforth’s Plain Bad Heroines’

Panel 34: Disability (Room 2) Chair: Alyce Soulodre Esther Reilly, ‘“Half-Man, Half-Chair”: Humanity and Mechanisation in Wilkie Collins’s The Law and the Lady’
Katerina Garcia-Walsh, ‘Disability in Dickens: Crutches, Prosthetics and Wheelchairs’
Roshmara Kissoon, ‘Women Constructing Texts in the Fiction of Richard Marsh’

16:45 – 17:15 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

17:15 – 18:30 Keynote 3 (Room 1) Greg Vargo (New York University) “You might say, sir … that they all were Chartists”: Popular Theatre and Radical Politics in the 1830s and 1840s Chair: Erin Louttit 18:30 – 19:15

Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

19:15 – 20:15 Reading Group (Room 1) “Against the Grain: Reparative Readings for Victorian Popular Fiction’ Hosted by Jesse Erickson (University of Delaware)

20:15 – 20:30 Break – feel free to continue the conversation in the Break Room

20:30 – 21:30 Annual General Meeting, Prize Giving and Close (Room 1)

Last modified 8 June 2021