Society for Novel Studies Biennial Conference: The Novel in or Against World Literature

Are the novel and world literature mutually constitutive, at least in part, or fundamentally opposed in important ways? How have the disparate politics, economics, translation practices, cultural institutions, and more of a global modernity stretching across centuries shaped the novel?  This conference brings together over 150 scholars and three distinguished keynote speakers in order to probe these and other questions.  We look forward to welcoming you to Pittsburgh for SNS 2016.

Jonathan Arac and Gayle Rogers, co-organizers

Department of English, University of Pittsburgh

Keynote Speakers:

Tom McCarthy is a writer and artist whose work has been translated into more than twenty languages. His first novel, Remainder, which deals with questions of trauma and repetition, won the 2008 Believer Book Award and is currently being adapted for cinema. His third, C, which explores the relationship between melancholia and technological media, was a finalist in the 2010 Booker Prize. McCarthy is also author of the nonfiction book Tintin and the Secret of Literature; of the novel Men in Space, set in a Central Europe rapidly disintegrating after the collapse of communism; and of numerous essays that have appeared in publications such as The New York Times,The London Review of BooksHarper’s and Artforum. In addition, he is founder and General Secretary of the International Necronautical Society (INS), a semi-fictitious avant-garde network of writers, philosophers and artists. In 2013 he was awarded the inaugural Windham-Campbell Prize for Fiction by Yale University.  His latest novel,Satin Island, was published in February 2015.

Katie Trumpener is Emily Sanford Professor of Comparative Literature and English at Yale University. Her publications include Bardic Nationalism: The Romantic Novel and the British EmpireThe Cambridge Companion to Fiction of the Romantic Period (co-edited with Richard Maxwell), and many articles on literary and film history and visual culture (including on the European reception of the Arabian Nights, and Jane Austen reception among colonial New Woman novelists and British modernists). A forthcoming collection, The Viewing Platform: Perspectives on the Panorama, edited with Timothy Barringer, explores nineteenth and twentieth-century panoramic painting and film. She is finishing a book on twentieth-century German film culture, and working on a book on European modernism and memories of early childhood.

Jed Esty is the Vartan Gregorian Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania.  He is the author of A Shrinking Island:  Modernism and National Culture in England (Princeton, 2004) and Unseasonable Youth: Modernism, Colonialism, and the Fiction of Development (Oxford, 2012). With Joe Cleary and Colleen Lye, he co-edited a 2012 special issue of MLQ on “Peripheral Realisms;” with Ania Loomba, Suvir Kaul, Antoinette Burton, and Matti Bunzl, he co-edited Postcolonial Studies and Beyond (Duke 2005). He is currently working on a new project entitled Cold War Victorians:  How the British Imagination Shaped American Power.

For more information on SNS 2016, please visit the official conference website:  The site includes information about travel and lodging, a registration portal that also explains the fee structure, and more. To take part in the event, you must register. One need not be a presenter, chair, or organizer at the conference to attend—all are welcome.