Jul 20 2018

V21 Collective Summer Reading Group – Blackness

July 20, 2018

V21 is delighted to announce our fourth (!) annual Summer Reading Group series. This year’s topics are Work, Blackness, and Sex.  As is traditional for our summer syllabi, each cluster mixes primary Victorian, secondary critical, and theoretical/philosophical texts.

The Chicago area group will meet June 21, July 20, and August 21, 3pm-5pm at the DePaul Library Rosati Room.

Join us in person or host one in your region!  Satellite groups are worldwide!  Use the 21 date or any day that works!  Interested parties for whom travel would be required for in-person groups are also encouraged to use Zoom.

We’ll gladly advertise satellite groups here and through twitter.  If you want to host a group and aren’t sure with whom you might collaborate, we can help facilitate connections.  Satellite groups are welcome to use our syllabus from this year, from  2017,  20162015, or from your own desires.

Use #v21summer for discussion prompts and simul-reading.

Contact us for details on satellites in locations such as:

Ann Arbor, MI
Ithaca, NY
Washington, DC
Philly, PA
Seattle, WA
Nashville, TN
Tucson, AZ
Hamilton, Ontario
London, England


(write v21collective at gmail for PDFs of the readings)

What are the challenges and opportunities of aesthetically or sociologically representing blackness in the Victorian era?  How do different genres respond to, or take shape from, these challenges?  Why is work on race more common in romanticist and modernist literary criticism than in Victorian studies?  Why have South Asian intellectuals pointedly taken up the African American question?  How does the Victorian history of blackness illuminate or confound the political-economic determinants and theoretical promise of C21 blackness?  How should Victorianists teach and write in the wake of Black Lives Matter?  Why does the study of blackness necessitate transnational, transtemporal work?

Mary Seacole, Wonderful Adventures of Mrs Seacoale in Many Lands  excerpt
Daniel Hack, Reaping Something New: African American Transformations of Victorian Literature intro
Lisa Lowe, The Intimacies of Four Continents intro


Date posted

Jul 27, 2018

Date updated

Jul 27, 2018