Conference: The Intermedia Restoration

16 February 2018 all-day
University of Maryland

Organized by Laura Rosenthal (Professor of English, University of Maryland)

& Scott Trudell (Assistant Professor of English, University of Maryland)

The Intermedia Restoration is a one-day conference that takes the interdisciplinary conversation in media history back to an especially vibrant intersection: the English Restoration, c. 1660-1700. This period of media novelty upon media novelty included newspapers, novels, still life, landscape painting, opera, and a newly cosmopolitan stage featuring female actors. The dynamic interactions across Restoration media were crucial to what made them appear to be so “new.”

One of the landmark publications in recent scholarship on the history and theory of media was Lisa Gitelman and Geoffrey Pingree’s New Media, 1740–1915 (MIT Press, 2003) – a book that “challenges the notion that to study new media is to study exclusively today’s new media.” This book was intended to expand media studies backward in time, and yet, fourteen years later, it emblematizes what has become a cut-off point. Scholars of media continue to conceive of the mid-eighteenth century at the early limit of a genealogy that stretches to our own, late capitalist experiences of oversaturation in new media cultures. The Enlightenment and Industrialization have retained a firm hold at the origin of the narratives we write about the modern and contemporary media concept.

“The Intermedia Restoration” aims to expand and enrich these narratives by addressing the following questions: What theoretical and methodological shifts do we need to better understand this period’s media ecology? How might we reimagine the concept of the seventeenth-century “baroque” in fresh, interdisciplinary ways? What new histories of religion and politics can we connect to media interplay? How can transnational histories of slavery and colonization be more fully integrated into our conceptions of Restoration aesthetics and media cultures? How might we think through the period’s failures and breakdowns in media interactivity? How might we use the concept of intermediation to rethink continuity and change in the periods preceding and succeeding the Restoration?

The conference will serve as the basis for a special issue of the journal Restoration: Studies in English Literary Culture, 1660-1700, to be published in the 2018-19 academic year and guest edited by Scott Trudell. The event is sponsored by the University of Maryland Center for Literary and Comparative Studies, College of Arts and Humanities, Department of English, and Department of Art History.

Keynote speakers:

William Germano, Dean and Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences at The Cooper Union: “Operatic Shakespeare, or the Restoration Road Not Taken”

Stuart Sherman, Professor of English at Fordham University: “Unknown to All the Rest”: Restoration Prologues and Epilogues as Intermedial Crux”

Amanda Eubanks Winkler, Associate Professor of Music History and Cultures at Syracuse University: “The Intermediality of Dramatick Opera”

10-minute papers:

Sharon J. Harris, Ph.D. candidate in English at Fordham University: “Domesticating the English Masque through Its Music on the Late Restoration Stage”

Franklin Hildy, Professor of Theatre History at the University of Maryland: “‘The Triumph of Isabella’ and ‘The Triumph of London’: Pageantry, Art and Message in the 17th Century.”

Katherine Hunt, Career Development Fellow in English Literature at Oxford University: “Kinetic epistemologies and the form of the book in Restoration playing cards”

Erin Keating, Assistant Professor of English, Film and Theatre at the University of Manitoba: “Paratextual Community: Secret History and Sociability in the Restoration Court”

Stephanie Koscak, Assistant Professor of History at Wake Forest University: “Playing Cards and Political Legerdemain: Communications Networks and the Representation of Conspiracy”

Eric Nils Lindquist, Librarian for history, American studies, classics, and religion at the University of Maryland: “Manuscript, Print, and Two Exclusion Crises”

Joseph Arthur Mann, Scholar in Residence at St. Gregory’s University: “A History of Hidden Monarchical Manipulation: The Themes and Strategies of Late-Stuart Music Propaganda”

Elizabeth Massey, Ph.D. student in Musicology at the University of Maryland: “Music Making English Identity”

Nicholas Smolenski, Ph.D. student in Musicology at Duke University: “Caroline Propaganda in Restoration England: Thomas Tomkins’s Musica Deo sacra”

Rajani Sudan, Professor of English at Dedman College, “Amboyna Burl: Dryden and the Ecology of Disaster”

Thomas Ward, Associate Professor of English at the United States Naval Academy: “Pindarique Waveforms ~ Abraham Cowley’s Irregular Verse in Print, Manuscript, and Music”

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