Crossing the Bar, which was funded by The University of Pennsylvania English Department, The McNeil Center for Early American Studies, The Rutgers Center for Cultural Analysis, and The Princeton University Council for the Humanities, brought together scholars from across the country and across the pond to talk about historical poetics. The format was two papers with an in-depth response and lots of time for discussion. We also had a graduate caucus who met to discuss the papers and presented a response on the last day of the conference.


Speakers included:

Chair: Max Cavitch (Penn)

Kirstie Blair (Glasgow), “Faith of Our Fathers: Victorian Religion and American Religious Verse”

Meredith McGill (Rutgers), “Form, Format, Medium”

Respondent: Tricia Lootens (Georgia)

4:45-6:15 Scanning the Bar: Why Do We Do Historical Prosody?

Max Cavitch (Penn)

Jason Hall (Exeter)

Meredith Martin (Princeton)

Jason Rudy (Maryland)

Moderator: Yopie Prins (Michigan)

6:15-7:00 Reception

7:00-8:30 Graduate Student Caucus Dinner (location tba)

Saturday, March 6:

Fisher-Bennett Hall, 3340 Walnut Street

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia PA

9:30-11:00 Affecting Performances: Visual Aesthetics and Vocal Evocations

Chair: Michael Gamer (Penn)

Julia Carlson (Cincinnati), “The Thesis and Arsis of John Thelwall’s Physiological Poetics”

Michael Cohen (LSU), “The African Ballad in the Atlantic Triangle”

Respondent: Jess Roberts (Albion)

11:15-11:30 Coffee

11:30-1:00 The Poetic Apologia: “Invictus” and “Infelicia

Chair: Paul Saint-Amour (Penn)

Eliza Richards (UNC-Chapel Hill), “‘Yes, dear love, I died!’: Adah Isaacs Menken’s Final Performances”

Catherine Robson (UC-Davis), “‘Invictus’ and the Oklahoma Bomber: The End(s) of Memorization”

Respondent: Carolyn Williams (Rutgers)

1:00-2:00 Buffet Lunch for all registered attendees

2:00-3:30 Before Modernity

Chair: Bob Perelman (Penn)

Virginia Jackson (Tufts), “Before Modernism”

Charles LaPorte (Washington-Seattle), “A. H. Clough’s Secular Modernity

Respondent: Elizabeth Renker (OSU)