Category Archives: BCLA Events

BCLA: Unforeseen Consequences (Warwick)

Unforeseen Consequences: Literatures of Protest and Progress

University of Warwick, 11th November

Keynote speaker: Dr. Oliver Davis (Warwick)

The British Comparative Literature Association’s annual postgraduate conference ‘Unforeseen Consequences: Literatures of Protest and Political Struggle’ takes place at the University of Warwick on 11 November with a keynote by Dr Oliver Davis (Warwick). All are welcome and attendance is free. Registration closes at 9am on Wednesday 8th November. Please use our Eventbrite page to register ( Anyone who wishes to register after this time should contact

The programme for the day is as follows:
9.30 – 10.00: Registration
10.00 – 10.15: Welcome
10.15 – 11.45: Panel One: Legacies of Power
Giulia Champion (Warwick): The Emergence of Britain as a Nation-State and the Uncanny Colony in Literature
Amanda Stewart (Oxford): Narrative Ambiguity as a Response to Governmental Censorship: a close analysis of narrative voice in Christa Wolf’s The Quest for Christa T
Michael James (Royal Holloway): Losing a Sense of Space: dysfunctional spaces and Grimethorpe in the poetry of Helen Mort and Steve Ely
11.45 – 12.00: Coffee
12.00 – 13.30: Panel Two: Territory and Displacement
Sophie Kelly (Edgehill): Right-to-Remain (Silent): making space for ‘unofficial’ voices within a hostile landscape
Sam La Védrine (Nottingham): The Ecology of the In-Between and Writing ‘the entangled letters/of a new genetic code’: Pierre Joris’ stochasticism of nomadic poetics
Andrew Stones (Warwick): From ‘World-Ecological’ Literature to Exo-Planetary Fictions
13.30 – 14.15: Lunch
14.15 – 15.30: Keynote
Dr Oliver Davis (Warwick): For a Theory of Unforeseen Consequences: side-effects, unwieldy knowledge and literature
15.30 – 15.45: Coffee
15.45 – 17.15: Panel Three: Contemporary Struggles
Farah Aridi (Goldsmiths): Negotiating the Right to the City in Saleem Haddad’s Guapa
Asma Jahamah (Essex): Post 9/11 Terror in Nadeem Aslam’s The Blind Man’s Garden
Caterina Scarabicchi (Royal Holloway): ‘Borrowing’ the Migrant’s Story: De Luca’s Solo Andata between social commitment and literary appropriation
17.15 – 18.15: Wine Reception

The conference will be held in the Wolfson Research Exchange on Floor 3 (Extension) of University of Warwick Library. A university card is required to enter the library; please speak to the staff member at the library Welcome Point who will direct you to the Wolfson Research Exchange. An interactive campus map and a floorplan of the library are available here.

Complimentary teas, coffees, and lunch willl be provided, with a wine reception following the conference. If you have any dietary requirements, please let us know by emailing See our website for more information about the BCLA and our Facebook and Twitter pages for more about BCLA Postgraduates.
We look forward to seeing you on 11th November.

The BCLA At Home (SOAS)

Saturday, 18th November 2017
SOAS, University of London
Brunei Gallery – B 102


From Thesis to Publication (12.00)Training session and discussion aimed especially at postgraduate students and early career academics, led by:

Dr Graham Nelson (Oxford ), Managing Editor of the Legenda (home to the BCLA’s own Studies in Comparative Literature, as well as Transcript and other interesting series).
Dr Richard Hibbitt (Leeds), Editor of the BCLA’s journal Comparative Critical Studies.
Prof Sanja Bahun (Essex), Associate Editor for Feminist Modernist Studies.
Prof Ben Hutchinson (Kent), Editor of Palgrave Studies in Modern European Literature.

Members of the BCLA Editorial Committee responsible for selecting publications for Studies in Comparative Literature will also be present and happy to answer questions.

Sandwich Lunch (1.30), featuring the Award of this year’s Arthur Terry Postgraduate Essay Prize

AGM & Open Meeting of the Executive Committee (2.15)

Wine Reception (5.00), featuring President Prof Susan Bassnett (Warwick) in conversation with Prof Matthew Reynolds (Oxford) and members of the BCLA

Please come and join us for this interesting and convivial day!

CFP: BCLA – Unforeseen Consequences (Warwick)

The British Comparative Literature Association Postgraduate Conference, 11 November 2017,  University of Warwick

Unforeseen Consequences: Literatures of Protest and Political Struggle

 Keynote speaker: Dr Oliver Davis (University of Warwick)


The British Comparative Literature Association invites papers for its annual postgraduate conference to be held at the University of Warwick on 11 November 2017. This conference intends to bring together postgraduate students from across the humanities to discuss questions relating to the impact of literature and the arts, viewed comparatively, on the formation of political discourses and actions of resistance to dominant institutional practices of oppression and control.

Will Self has asserted that the United Kingdom currently exists in a state of perpetual ‘unforeseen consequences’ in which the government ‘muddles and meddles,’ creating a sense of ambiguity that disguises serious neglect of human rights and broader social issues.  The conference intends to apply a global focus to this concept and explore literature’s response to times of political struggle, dangerous social policy, and oppressive institutional standards across the historical spectrum. As such we invite papers considering literature’s relation and responses to the following themes:

  • Struggles for political independence
  • Sovereignty and state power
  • Censorship and the surveillance state
  • Institutional control, mass incarceration and indefinite detention
  • Queer politics
  • Migration
  • Colonialism/decolonialism
  • Neoliberalism and its discontents
  • Feminism and intersectionality
  • Brexit, democracy and devolution
  • Literature, digital texts and social media.

Submissions need not be limited to these parameters and we welcome broad and creative interpretations of our theme.

Please send proposals of 250 words with 50 word bio by 23 September 2017 to



Call for applications: Closing in TWO weeks! BCLA Arthur Terry Prize 2017

The British Comparative Literature Association offers an annual prize for an essay written in English on any aspect of comparative literature, in memory of Arthur Terry (1927–2004), who served as President of the BCLA for many years. The aim of the Prize is to recognise work of outstanding merit at Master’s level. There are three prizes of £100, £50,and £30 and the winning entrants are also given one-year free BCLA membership.

The deadline for application is 12 noon on Friday 1 September 2017. The judges are members of the Association’s Executive Committee. The prizes will be awarded at the BCLA Postgraduate General Meeting in November 2017. Winning entries are also eligible for publication in full on the website.

More information, including conditions for entry, can be found here.

John Dryden Translation Competition Winners 2016-2017

The winners of the John Dryden Translation Competition for 2016-2017 have been announced. The jury has evaluated translations from a range of languages into English and awarded the following:

First prize: Melody Shaw for The Swifts’ Nest from the German of Christoph Poschenrieder’s Mauersegler

Second prize: Robert Cantrick for Mario and the Magician from the German of Thomas Mann’s Mario und der Zauberer

Third prize: Clare Beddows for The Shadow of the Staff from the Italian of Mauro Corona’s L’Ombra del Bastone

Commendation: Simon Bruni for Cinnamon from the Spanish of Paul Pen’s Canela

See the previous winners of the John Dryden Translation Competition.

If you would like to enter the 2017-2018 competition, conditions of entry and further information can be found on the John Dryden Translation Competition 2017-2018 Entry Form. Entries will be received from September 2017, and the deadline for submissions is 12 February 2018.