Two L.M. Montgomery Calls for Papers

Two calls for papers have now been posted, for the next two conferences hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute at the University of Prince Edward Island: L.M. Montgomery and Cultural Memory (21–24 June 2012) and L.M. Montgomery and War (26–29 June 2014).

L.M. Montgomery and Cultural Memory (21–24 June 2012)

“Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.” —The Golden Road (1913)

“and even if you are not Abegweit-born you will say, ‘Why … I have come home!’” —“Prince Edward Island” (1939)

For the tenth biennial conference hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute at the University of Prince Edward Island, we invite scholars, writers, readers, and cultural producers of all kinds to consider the topic of L.M. Montgomery and cultural memory. A term that originated in the field of archaeology and that now resonates in a wide range of disciplines, cultural memory refers to the politics of remembering and forgetting, sometimes in opposition to official versions of the past and the present. Within textual studies, the term invites us to consider the ways in which the past, the present, and the future are remembered, recorded, and anticipated by members of a collective and encoded into text. As a result, cultural memory touches on a number of key concerns, including identity, belonging, citizenship, home, community, place, custom, religion, language, landscape, and the recovery and preservation of cultural ancestries.

But what versions of Prince Edward Island, of Canada, of the world do Montgomery’s work and its derivatives encourage readers to remember? How do gender and genre (not to mention religion and power) affect and shape Montgomery’s selective and strategic ways of remembering in her fiction and life writing? What acts of memory can be found in the depiction of writers, diarists, letter writers, oral storytellers, poets, and domestic artists in her fiction? What roles do domesticity, nature, conflict, and war play in the shaping and reshaping of cultural memory? To what extent do nostalgia and antimodernism drive Montgomery texts in print and on screen? How have these selective images of time and place been adapted to fit a range of reading publics all over the world?

The LMMI invites proposals for papers that will consider these issues in relation to Montgomery’s fiction, poetry, life writing, photographs, and scrapbooks, and the range of adaptations and spinoffs in the areas of film, television, theatre, tourism, and online communities. Proposals for workshops, exhibits, films, and performances are also welcomed. Proposals should clearly articulate the proposed paper’s argument and demonstrate familiarity with current scholarship in the field (please see for an updated bibliography). For more information, please contact the program chair, Dr. Benjamin Lefebvre (ben@roomofbensown.net). Submit a proposal of 200-250 words, a biographical statement of 70 words, and a list of A/V requirements by 15 August 2011 by using our online form at the L.M. Montgomery Institute website at http://www.lmmontgomery.ca/. Since all proposals are vetted blind, they should include no identifying information.

L.M. Montgomery and War (26–29 June 2014)

“And you will tell your children of the Idea we fought and died for—teach them it must be lived for as well as died for, else the price paid for it will have been given for nought.” — Rilla of Ingleside (1921)

“I am thankful now, Jem, that Walter did not come back … and if he had seen the futility of the sacrifice they made then mirrored in this ghastly holocaust …” — The Blythes Are Quoted (2009)

The year 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War, a global conflict that would prove life-changing for L.M. Montgomery and millions of her contemporaries. For the eleventh biennial conference hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute at the University of Prince Edward Island, we invite proposals for papers that consider war in relation to L.M. Montgomery’s fiction, poetry, life writing, photographs, and scrapbooks, and the range of adaptations and spinoffs in the areas of film, television, theatre, tourism, and online communities.

Montgomery’s 1921 novel Rilla of Ingleside is one of the only contemporary accounts of Canadian women’s experience on the homefront during the First World War, but the War is evoked and implied in direct and indirect ways in many of the novels, short stories, and poems that precede and follow it. The Blythes Are Quoted, Montgomery’s final published work, bridges the years between the First World War and the Second World War, complicating Montgomery’s perspectives and thoughts about war and conflict. Montgomery’s work has met with a variety of responses world-wide during times of war and rebellion, from post-WWII Japan to today’s Middle Eastern countries. Different kinds of wars and rebellions also permeate her fiction and life writing—class conflicts, family disputes, gender and language wars—sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic. This conference seeks to take stock of the complex ways in which war in all its forms has influenced Montgomery’s works and their reception, both in Canada and around the world.

Possible topics include: the Great War anticipated, revisited, remembered, and re-imagined; the politics of gendered witnessing; Montgomery’s reception in times of war and conflict; chivalry, patriarchy, conflict, and romance in poetry and fiction; war as an agent of change; internal and external rebellion in relation to war; the psychology of war in battle and on the homefront.

Proposals should clearly articulate the proposed paper’s argument and demonstrate familiarity with current scholarship in the field (please see for an updated bibliography). For more information, please contact the conference co-chairs, Dr. Benjamin Lefebvre (ben@roomofbensown.net) and Dr. Andrea McKenzie (acmcken@gmail.com). Submit a proposal of 200–250 words, a biographical statement of 70 words, and a list of A/V requirements by 15 August 2013 by using our online form at the L.M. Montgomery Institute website at http://www.lmmontgomery.ca/. Proposals for workshops, exhibits, films, and performances are also welcomed. Since all proposals are vetted blind, they should include no identifying information.