Global Decadence, Race, and the Futures of Decadence Studies, March 31 to April 1 2023
The Jefferson Scholars Foundation, University of Virginia, with support from The Decadence Research Centre, Goldsmiths, University of London
"Global Decadence, Race, and the Futures of Decadence Studies" is a conference that aims to connect those who are working on any aspect of Decadence so that they can share their research or artistic projects with the field, learn from one another, and discuss the possible futures that the field might take within—and outside of—academia.
Extending the ambitions of the 2018 Transnational Poetics: Aestheticism and Decadence at the Fin de Siècle symposium organised by Jane Desmarais, Kate Hext, and Marion Thain, this deliberately expansive conference invites short papers and presentations related to any and all aspects of Decadence from scholars and artists across the globe, in any time period.
In the process, however, this conference extends a special invitation to papers that focus on the relationship between Decadence and race.
Recent academic work such as Robin Mitchell’s Vénus Noire: Black Women and Colonial Fantasies in Nineteenth-century France (2020), Grace Lavery’s Quaint, Exquisite: Victorian Aesthetics and the Idea of Japan (2019), and Robert Stilling’s Beginning at the end: Decadence, Modernism, and Postcolonial Poetry (2018), as well as novels such as Shola Von Reinhold’s LOTE (2020), all suggest that artists and writers of color within and outside of Euro-America were just as much involved in the development of Decadent art and culture as their white counterparts.
How, then, does their presence within and beyond the nineteenth century revise our understanding of what Decadence is—as an aesthetic movement, a political position, and/or a historical period?
Possible Paper Topics Might Include:
- Anti-imperial, postcolonial, or “undisciplined” forms of Decadence.
- Global, world, planetary, or local Decadence.
- Circulation, reception, and translation of Decadent art and texts.
- Aestheticism, beauty, excess, sensuality.
- Decadent queerness and sexual dissonance.
- Decadence in everyday art, digital platforms, periodicals, theatre, and popular literature.
- Decadence before, during, and after the 19C.
- Decadent pedagogies.