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Symposium: Thoreau at 200

"Uses and Abuses of Thoreau at 200": A Symposium hosted by the Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, on May 2-4, 2018.

Marking Henry David Thoreau’s bicentennial, "Uses and Abuses of Thoreau at 200" seeks to gather a broad roster of scholars to discuss Thoreau’s standing in fields of humanities and social studies. Entering 2017, Western societies have experienced a decided shift in political narratives and electoral outcomes, reflecting newfangled yet widespread scepticism over issues including, but not limited to, global warming, immigration, trade and civil rights. Liberal interpretations of democracy, emphasizing sweeping human rights and multicultural plenums, but also free flows of goods, labor and capital, have increasingly come to be questioned by more protectionist and nativist movements.

Of what relevance can Thoreau’s outlooks on issues environmental, civic and aesthetic, be to the present moment? And conversely, do recent developments within society and academia perhaps call for new understandings of Thoreau? Is Thoreau relevant today?

Sessions to be held at Thoreau at 200

  • Thoreau in the Global (Ex)Community:
  • Thoreau, Natural Science & the World(s) Beyond
  • Thoreau and the Nordic Imagination
  • Thoreau and Spirituality
  • Thoreauvian Aesthetics
  • Thoreauvian Contrasts
  • Thoreau’s Environmentalism
  • Thoreau in the Digital Age
  • Material Thoreau


Plenary speakers:
Prof. Kristen Case, University of Maine, Farmingham, USA
Prof. Rochelle Johnson, University of Idaho, Boise, USA

Final Program (PDF, new window)Venue: The Wallenberg Conference Centre, Medicinaregatan 20, Gothenburg.
Practical information (PDF, new window)

Deadline for applications to attend all three days: April 13.

We need information if you have special food requirements!
Please send questions and applications to: thoreau200@lir.gu.se

Organizing Committee: Henrik Otterberg, Chalmers Science Park; Camilla Brudin Borg, University of Gothenburg; Rikard Wingård, University of Gothenburg; Mats Malm, University of Gothenburg, Imre Göthe and Andrea Karlsén.

The conference is sponsored by: Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, Sven och Dagmar Saléns vetenskaps- och kulturstiftelse, Humanistiska fakultetens donationsfond, GUEHN och Institutionen för litteratur, idéhistoria och religion.

Sidansvarig: Elin Widfeldt|Sidan uppdaterades: 2018-04-25
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