VSAO-Sponsored ACCUTE Joint Session: “Eco-Victorians: Water, Land, and the World,” For the Humanities Congress

Country: Canada

City: London, Ontario

Abstr. due: 15.11.2019

Dates: 30.05.20 — 05.06.20

Area Of Sciences: History and archeology;

Organizing comittee e-mail: info.accute@gmail.com

Organizers: University of Western Ontario


From Charles Dickens’s ecopoetical rivers to the wondrous route across the sea to Treasure Island, the Victorian era was resplendent with images of water, seafaring, and global travel. At the same time, as J.M.W. Turner’s visceral abolitionist painting Slave Ship attests, society was literally kept afloat by the oceanic trade routes which forcibly moved both human (slaves) and inhuman cargo (colonized resources) throughout what Paul Gilroy has famously coined “the Black Atlantic.” The word “ecology” was itself coined by Ernst Haeckel in 1866, ushering in the formal study of diverse ecosystems, terrain sites and watery worlds which were then being transformed by industrial capitalism and imperialism. Indeed, Victorians saw the power of “the Anthropocene” unleashed during that grave epoch in which the human species became, and has remained, the dominant influence on our planet’s climate and environment.

This panel invites papers that examine the way in which water, land, and the ecological world connecting them was constructed in this era.

Possible themes:

  • representations of seas, landscapes, and ecosystems 
  • eco-writing, eco-criticism, print culture, illustration
  • tourism, parks, maritime histories, leisure activities
  • decolonial representations, anthropocene studies, global Victorian literatures
  • histories of imperialism, colonization, migration, diasporic communities and slavery
  • genre fiction and ecologies
  • spatial histories, environmental architecture in urban, rural, domestic and cultural spaces


Conference Web-Site: https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2019/08/28/vsao-sponsored-accute-joint-session-%E2%80%9Ceco-victorians-water-land-and-the-world%E2%80%9D-for-the