LINGUIST List 31.848

Mon Mar 02 2020

Confs: Ling & Lit, Translation/United Kingdom

Editor for this issue: Lauren Perkins <>

Date: 26-Feb-2020
From: Sandra Daroczi <>
Subject: A new ‘feminist’ novel? Popular narratives and the pleasures of reading
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A new ‘feminist’ novel? Popular narratives and the pleasures of reading

Date: 28-May-2020 - 29-May-2020
Location: London, United Kingdom
Contact: Sandra Daroczi
Contact Email: < click here to access email >
Meeting URL:

Linguistic Field(s): Ling & Literature; Translation

Meeting Description:

The deadline for the submission of abstracts has now been extended until Monday, 9 March 2020 for our forthcoming conference A new ‘feminist’ novel? Popular narratives and the pleasures of reading.

We are also very excited to be able to confirm our keynote speakers: Dr Loredana Di Martino (University of San Diego) and the French writer Agnès Martin-Lugand (

This cross-cultural conference takes its cue from the recent popularity of a number of novels focusing on women by authors from around the world, for example Elena Ferrante’s quartet L'amica geniale, Agnès Martin-Lugand's Les gens heureux lisent et boivent du café, Anna Gavalda’s Ensemble c’est tout, Tatiana de Rosnay’s Elle s’appelait Sarah, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and The Testaments, Madeline Miller’s Circe, and Rosa Montero’s La carne. The popularity of these novels has been increased by their translations into many languages and their transfer to cinema and the small screen, pointing to their relevance to women’s lives around the globe and sensitizing audiences to old and new feminist issues. The aim of the conference is to explore the recent ‘return to the story’ and the tensions that follow, thus working towards a theorization of the pleasures of reading. The focus is both on the textual and authorial control of the reading process and the readerly power over the text.

Program Information and Call for Papers:

Submissions are welcomed across a range of topics and questions including, but not limited to:

- What linguistic devices do these popular narratives use to attract such large audiences?
- How are these linguistic devices transferred from one language to the other when the works are translated?
- To what extent have translations contributed to the success of these texts?
- What links can be established between translations and commercial success?
- Links between extradiegetic and diegetic readings
- The power of texts to establish a connection with their readers and generate empathy
- To what extent is the act of reading situated in time and place?
- The merging of self-reflexivity and realism in these narratives
- What tropes of classic popular fiction (for example, characters and plot) are being used or remodelled?
- Feminist ideas and ideals present in these popular novels
- What feminist readings, if any, do they encourage?
- How do they pass on feminist messages, if at all?
- What literary strategies do they use to be both popular and (politically) committed?
- Links between commercial success and readers’ empowerment
- Is this literature escapist? Can escapism be productive?

Papers are invited from a range of literatures and languages. The event will be in English.

Proposals of no more than 250 words for 20-minute papers and a short bio should be sent by Monday, 9 March 2020 to

Full information about the conference can be found at:

Page Updated: 02-Mar-2020