Thursday, February 28, 2008


I have just returned from another excellent South Central Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SCSECS) conference. This is a jovial bunch and I encourage you to consider joining us in Galveston next year. The Conference theme was Reinventing the Self. I had the privilege of chairing a session titled "Reading as Reinventing: Reading Life Writing in the Eighteenth Century" at which I heard three outstanding papers:

Shayda Hoover, University of California, "Engrossing Female Talents: Frances Burney's Early Diaries and the Inner Circle";

Phyllis Thompson, East Tennessee State University, "Middleclass Housewives, Medicinal Recipes, and the Material Conditions of Reading and Writing";

Heather Lobban-Viravong, Grinnell College, "Endlessly Re-imagining the Self: Fiction and Renewal in John Dunton's
The Life and Errors of John Dunton, Late Citizen of London (1705)."

I gave a paper on this panel as well "Samuel Johnson and Life Reading as Self-Reinvention" and another the following day: "The Duality of Celebrity: The Construction of La Perricholi."

I enjoyed seeing old friends at the conference and making new ones; I took my best friend along for the ride: my husband Sean.

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