Call For Papers

Devotional Writing in Print and Manuscript in Early Modern England, 1558-1700

University of Warwick, Monday 26 June 2017, Ramphal Building

Devotions in early modern England, public or private, were central to the everyday lives of clergy and laity alike. Yet such practises were routinely transformed by men and women who did not just record but reconfigured their piety through writing. From accounts of fasts, feasts, and thanksgiving days; prayers and sacred songs; covenants and confessing of sins; narratives of conversion, baptism or burial; biblical graffiti; repetition of sermons; conferencing and conventicles. English citizens, individually and communally, and on either side of the confessional divide, had a regimen of acts that were to be performed and perfected during their lifetimes. This one day conference aims to investigate how print and manuscript cultures coalesced and collided in their re-presentation of post-Reformation devoutness.

‘Devotional Writing in Print and Manuscript’ is a major one day multi-disciplinary conference, hosted by the University of Warwick’s English Department in collaboration with the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance, The Humanities Research Centre and the Early Modern Forum. Contributions are invited from established scholars and postgraduate students alike. Publication of a selection of papers is envisioned. Themes for papers may include (but are not limited to): literary, visual. political, theological, historical, material, musical, polemical or any other treatments of the topics of devotional writing in print or manuscript in the context of reformation-era England.

These may include:

  • Piety of the Household/Neighbourhood
  • Children, Catechism and Memory
  • Temptation/Possession/Conversion Narratives
  • Fasts/Feasts/Thanksgiving Days
  • Prayer Books/Church Books/Book of Sports
  • Psalmody versus Hymnody
  • Playhouses, the Pulpit, and the Theatre of the Word
  • Sick-bed/Death-bed Accounts (ars moriendi)
  • Godly Missives and Communal Correspondences
  • Martyrology/Hagiography
  • Religious Iconography/Graffiti/Objects
  • Biblicism versus Fanaticism
  • Spiritual Manuals and/or Cases of Conscience

Please send abstracts/panel proposals of no more than 300 words for a 20-minute paper (along with a brief biography) by 30 April 2017 to: devotionalwritinginengland@gmail.com.