22 - 23 November 2018, University of Reading

As part of Beckett Week 2018, this two-day event invites academics, practitioners and postgraduates to engage in discussions surrounding Samuel Beckett’s involvement in early Modernist periodicals and his creative relationships in theatre. The conference, supported by the Samuel Beckett Research Centre at the University of Reading, will use the Beckett archive at the university to explore the diverse literary and performance networks that continue to spread across disciplines and genres. ​

The event includes research panels, as well as two hands-on workshops, a keynote on modernist periodicals by Professor Andrew Thacker, and a Q&A with additional invited speaker(s).

The Modernist Periodicals event (22 November) seeks to contextualise the human and material dynamics in which authors such as Beckett operated, and will offer an opportunity to engage with archival material. For the Beckett and Performance event (23 November), Beckett’s lasting influence as a playwright and director will be explored with close reference to Billie Whitelaw and Jocelyn Herbert’s papers in the Reading archives, as well as to the Staging Beckett database. Papers that expand on the remit of these outlines or engage with the additional areas listed below, and Beckett week more widely, are encouraged. We welcome theoretical as well as historicist discussions of Beckett’s creative networks, as well as papers that use intermediary and/or interdisciplinary methodologies to explore the work of Modernist writers more broadly. Lastly, we would like to invite joint and panel submissions and particularly welcome diversity amongst speakers.

This event will be followed by the annual Beckett International Foundation seminar (details and prices tbc), hosted by co-directors Professor Anna McMullan and Dr Mark Nixon. We warmly welcome postgraduates, ECRs, and practitioners interested in the work of Samuel Beckett, literary modernism, and performance studies to attend both the ‘Modernist Archives in Context’ and ‘BIF Seminar’ events. Further details will be added to the Beckett at Reading webpage shortly.

We encourage submissions focussed on, but not limited to, the following areas:

  • Archive and practice
  • Creators and their networks
  • Archives and the marketplace
  • Digital archives and databases
  • Audiences and reception
  • Visualising the archive

Please submit abstracts of 200 words and a short biography to archivesincontext@gmail.comby 13 August 2018. Any inquiries can be made to the same e-mail address.

The conference fee, which includes coffees and lunches, is as follows:

  • Postgraduates and unwaged: £10 for one day or £15 for both days
  • ECRs: £15 for one day or £25 for both days

Fully waged:  £25 for one day or £40 for both days