Otto-Friedrich University Bamberg
Bamberg, Germany July 21-July 26, 2014
Invitation for Applications to the 7th Transatlantic Walt Whitman Seminar
Founded in Paris in 2007, the Transatlantic Walt Whitman Association (TWWA) invites students, researchers, and Whitman enthusiasts to participate in its 7th annual Whitman Week, consisting of a Seminar for advanced students interested in Whitman and Whitman’s poetry, and a Symposium bringing together international scholars and graduate students. Previous Whitman Weeks have been held at Universität Dortmund, Germany (2008), Université Francois Rabelais, France (2009), Università di Macerata, Italy (2010), Universidade Estadual Paulista, Brazil (2011), Szczecin University, Poland (2012), and Northwestern University, USA (2013). The 2014 events will be held at the Otto-Friedrich-University in Bamberg, one of Germany’s most beautiful medieval and baroque towns situated in a region known for its historical architectural sights, natural beauty and rich culinary culture.
TWWA’s Mission
Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass remains a landmark of modern poetry and world literature. Every year new editions of Whitman’s work are published in a variety of languages; an ever- expanding group of poets “reply” to him in their poetry; his poems are set to music and are quoted in films; he is invoked in the discussion of political and cultural issues, as well as of gender and sexuality; and he continues to be a huge presence in college and university curricula globally. In order to respond adequately to this international phenomenon, TWWA sponsors a yearly International Whitman Seminar, during which students from different countries come together for an intensive, credit-bearing Seminar taught by an international team of Whitman specialists.
Seminar Structure
In the morning classes, focusing on some of Whitman’s major poems and selections from his prose, students will have an opportunity to confront Whitman’s books, share their readings of key poems and clusters, and discuss Whitman’s attempts at a multilingual English, his cohesive representation of human relations, and his work’s international significance. In addition, there will be afternoon workshops on the reception of Whitman in various countries, as well as the translation of his poems into various languages, including German, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish and Asian languages. (The specific readings that will be the focus of the Seminar will be announced a month before the start of the Seminar.)
The team of international instructors for 2014 will be: Betsy Erkkila: Professor of American literary and cultural studies at Northwestern University; author of Walt Whitman Among the French: Poet and Myth (1980) and Whitman the Political Poet(1996); co-editor, with Jay Grossmann, of Breaking Bounds: Whitman and American Cultural Studies (1996); editor of Walt Whitman’s Songs of Male Intimacy and Love (2011); Ed Folsom: Professor of American Literature at the University of Iowa; co-director of the online Whitman Archive; editor of the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review; author, co-author and editor of over 20 Whitman-related books, including, most recently, Walt Whitman’s Democratic Vistas: A Facsimile of the Original Edition(2010), Re-Scripting Walt Whitman (2007) co-authored with Kenneth M. Price, Whitman Making Books / Books Making Whitman (2005), and Whitman East and West: New Contexts for Reading Walt Whitman (2002); Walter Grünzweig: Professor American Literature and Culture at the University of Dortmund, Germany; author of Constructing the German Walt Whitman (1995) and Walt Whitmann: Die deutschsprachige Rezeption als interkulturelles Phänomen (1991); contributor to, amongst others, Breaking Bounds: Whitman and American Cultural Studies (1996), Whitman East & West: New Contexts for Reading Walt Whitman (2002), and A Companion to Walt Whitman (2009); Peter J. L. Riley: Early career fellow in American Literature at the University of Oxford, UK; author of “Leaves of Grass and Real Estate,” published in theWalt Whitman Quarterly Review; co-founder and committee member of the British Association of Nineteenth-Century Americanists; currently working on the book project Moonlighting Modernity: American Poets at Work.
International students will live together at no charge with Bamberg University students, thus creating opportunities for meaningful intercultural dialogue.
Students are expected to attend and invited to take part in the Symposium, held immediately following the Seminar, and featuring scholarly papers by Whitman scholars and graduate students from various countries. A separate paper proposal must be submitted in order to participate in the Symposium. This year’s Symposium theme is “Whitman Across Genres.” The Call for Papers appears below.
Applications for the Seminar
Applications for the seminar should include a curriculum vitae, a one-page statement of interest, and a short letter of support from an instructor who knows the applicant well. All of these materials, including the letter of recommendation, should be submitted electronically to the University of Bamberg Chair of the Seminar, Professor Christine Gerhardt by February 15, 2014.
The Transatlantic Walt Whitman Association is Pleased to Announce
An Open Call for Papers: Whitman Across Genres
To be held at Otto-Friedrich-University Bamberg, Bamberg, Germany, July 25 and 26, 2014
TWWA welcomes papers that explore Whitman’s accomplishments in genres other than poetry - Whitman as a journalist or fiction writer or letter writer or keeper of notebooks or essayist. In particular, we are looking for papers discussing the interrelations of his short fiction, novel, journalism, essays, private jottings, correspondence, etc., including interrelations between this body of writing and his poetry. We are also looking for presentations that investigate Whitman across all types of adaptations and reworkings in the work of later writers and artists who have talked back to Whitman: poets and translators, novelists that build upon Whitman’s work, filmmakers who quote Whitman (or even portray him), musicians who set his work to music or respond to him in their own compositions. Papers should be no more than 25 minutes in duration.
One-page abstracts should be sent electronically, no later than February 15, 2014, to all four Symposium Organizers:
Eric Athenot
Stephanie Blalock
Christine Gerhardt
Kenneth M. Price