L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature

Press Release: L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature

The following press release is from the L.M. Montgomery Institute:

A new generation of Montgomery scholars converges in Charlottetown

Young scholars from institutions around the globe will converge in Charlottetown June 23 – 27 at the 2010 International L.M. Montgomery Conference, “L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature,” to share their research on the province’s best-known writer.

For Alicia McDonald, an Islander, UPEI alumna and graduate student at the University of Western Ontario, Montgomery’s works have hit close to home. “Having grown up on Prince Edward Island, I found myself drawn to Anne and subsequently, L.M. Montgomery because they were talking about places I knew, and represented kindred spirits who understood what it was like to grow up in a rural area where everyone knows you. As I’ve gotten older and have traveled further away from PEI, I’ve found Montgomery’s vivid descriptions of our Island and rural culture to be a stunning reminder of home that I can easily carry with me.” McDonald’s presentation, “Literary Tourism – Anne of Green Gables and Twilight as Tourist Attractions,” takes place Saturday, June 26.

Emily Woster, a PhD student at Illinois State University, will be attending the L.M.M. Conference for the third time, along with her mother, Christy Woster. “My love of all things L.M.M. began when my mother named me ‘Emily’ and my sister ‘Anne’ five years later,” says Woster of her interest in Montgomery. L.M.M. has provided her both professional and personal opportunities and lots of “scope for imagination.” The pair will be giving their presentation, entitled “A Book by Its Cover: Collecting the Artistic Interpretations of L.M. Montgomery’s Works,” together on Sunday, June 27.

Jean Mitchell, an associate professor of anthropology at UPEI and co-chair of the 2010 L.M.M. International Conference, sees these presentations as evidence of the continuing interest in Montgomery’s works. “The students’ topics are very far-ranging and eclectic, suggesting Montgomery’s multiple and meaningful influences on a new generation.”

Other student presentations include: Vappu Kannas, of the University of Helsinki, “Familiar landscape in L. M. Montgomery’s Emily series: Nature as the integrating factor in the Finnish translations”; Christiana Salah, of the University of Connecticut, “Bonds of Sea and Shore: Locating the Gothic in Montgomery’s Prehensile Landscape”; Erin Whitmore, of the University of New Brunswick, “The ‘Old-Time Kitchen’: Domesticity, Nature and Avonlea’s Transforming Rural Economy”; and Kathryne Dycus, of the University of Glasgow, “Footprints on the Landscapes of Artistic Creation: “Wanderlust” in the Emily Books”.

All are welcome to register, and day and session passes are available for those unable to attend the full conference. For information and to register, visit lmmontgomery.ca/events/conference2010, email katmacdonal2@upei.ca, or call 902-628-4346.

Press Release: Epperly to Headline 2010 Montgomery Conference

The following press release announces the 9th International L.M. Montgomery conference, L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature, hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute of the University of Prince Edward Island on 23–27 June 2010. For more information, including a list of scheduled events, see the conference website.

Former UPEI president Dr. Elizabeth Rollins (‘Betsy’) Epperly, a world-renowned scholar and author on the life and work of L.M. Montgomery, will headline the international conference, “L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature” running June 23 to 27 at UPEI. Her talk, “Natural Bridge: L.M. Montgomery and the Architecture of Imaginative Landscapes” promises to be a highlight in four days of discussion and enjoyment of the enduring legacy of the province’s best-known writer.

“We are thrilled that Betsy can be such an important part of this event,” says conference co-chair Dr. Jean Mitchell of UPEI. “Betsy has so much knowledge and passion for Montgomery that people are always eager to hear what she has to say.”

Ever since Epperly helped establish the L.M. Montgomery Institute at UPEI in 1993, its international conference on Montgomery has become an essential focal point for the rapidly-growing field of Montgomery studies. 2010 marks the ninth such conference, and will draw scholars and admirers from across North America and around the world, with presenters from Europe, Australia, Africa, and Asia.

The 2008 Conference attracted some 200 registrants to Charlottetown, and organizers expect a similarly enthusiastic response this year. Besides Epperly’s keynote, highlights will include: panel discussions of responses to Montgomery in Asia and Europe; a presentation by Canada Research Chair and leading Montgomery scholar Irene Gammel; and the PEI launch of two publications of recently-rediscovered Montgomery works, The Blythes Are Quoted (edited by conference co-chair and LMMI visiting scholar Dr. Benjamin Lefebvre) and Una of the Garden. All are welcome to register, and day and session passes are available for those unable to attend the full conference. For more information and to register, visit lmmontgomery.ca/events/conference2010, e-mail cydennis@upei.ca, or call 902-628-4346.

Five-Day Extension for LMMI Conference

Due to an unexpected technological difficulty, Jean Mitchell and I would like to offer a five-day extension to everyone interested in submitting a proposal to the L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature conference, to be hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute and held at the University of Prince Edward Island. Please send your abstracts and full contact information in the body of an e-mail to lmmi@upei.ca by Monday, 21 September at the very latest.

The call for papers can be found here.

CFP: L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature (updated)

L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature
9th International Conference
University of Prince Edward Island
23-27 June 2010

At the ninth biennial conference hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute (University of Prince Edward Island), we invite you to consider L.M. Montgomery and the matter of nature. In recent years, the matter of nature has been the subject of much contested debate and theoretical innovation across disciplines. While multiple romanticisms have informed L.M. Montgomery’s passionate views of the natural world, her complex descriptions show her writing both of and for nature. This complexity extends as well to the depiction of cultural and gendered mores (domesticity, friendship, faith, community, biological determinism) as both natural and cultural. In all its forms, nature situates binary relationships that are often represented as hierarchical and oppositional: nature and culture; child and adult; animal and human; female and male; emotion and reason; body and mind; traditional and modern; raw and cooked; wild and domestic; rural and urban.

We invite the submission of abstracts that consider these issues in relation to Montgomery’s fiction, poetry, life writing, photographs, and scrapbooks, as well as the range of adapted texts in the areas of film, television, theatre, tourism, and online communities. Possible questions include:

  • What are the effects of the representations and images of nature that are crafted and circulated in Montgomery’s work?
  • How do Montgomery’s narrations of nature shape children and adults within and across cultures?
  • How do particular constructions of nature work in fiction, across such differences as gender, race, culture, and class?
  • What are the cultural and historical contingencies surrounding nature in Montgomery’s work?
  • What does it mean to consider Montgomery as a “green” writer (Doody) or as a proto-ecofeminist (Holmes)?
  • What do Montgomery’s provocative readings of nature offer us at a time of environmental crises and ecological preoccupations?
  • How does the notion of “nature” impact some of the most central preoccupations in Montgomery’s fiction, poetry, and life writing (the nature of war, of mental illness, of cultural inheritance, of conflict, of same-sex friendships and of heterosexual marriage, of cultural memory, of national ideologies)?

Abstracts should clearly articulate the 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 directly: Dr. Benjamin Lefebvre (ben@roomofbensown.net) and Dr. Jean Mitchell (mjmitchell@upei.ca). All proposals will be vetted blind and should therefore contain no identifying information.

Please submit one-page abstracts and short biographical sketches by 15 September 2009 to the L.M. Montgomery Institute’s OCS page ).

If you’ve already submitted an abstract for the 2010 Conference, please verify that it has been received by e-mailing the director at lmmi@upei.ca. All those who were registered through the 2008 OCS page have been made authors and should go to to submit their abstract. If you were registered but have forgotten your password, please use the Reset Password link located here: . If this is your first time using OCS for the L.M. Montgomery Conference, then please register yourself as an author here: (make sure to select the “Create account as Author: Able to submit items to the conference” option at the bottom of the registration form).

The 2010 Conference planning is well underway so please be on the lookout for future emails with details concerning accommodations and other events. And as always, if you have any problems, do not hesitate to contact us at lmmi@upei.ca.

L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature (2010)

Call for Papers

Please note the extended deadline is now September 15, 2009.

L. M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature
9th International Conference
University of Prince Edward Island
June 23-27, 2010

In 2010 we invite you to consider L.M. Montgomery and the matter of nature. While multiple romanticisms have informed L.M. Montgomery’s passionate views of nature her descriptions were complex as she wrote both of and for nature. What are the effects of the representations and images of nature that are crafted and circulated in the fiction of Montgomery, and in that of other writers of literature (especially for children and youth)? How do her narrations of nature shape children and adults within and across cultures? How do particular constructions of nature work in fiction, across such differences as gender, race, culture and class? What are the cultural and historical contingencies surrounding nature in Montgomery’s work? In recent years, the matter of “nature” itself has been the subject of much-contested debate and theoretical innovation across disciplines. Nature situates binary relationships that are often represented as hierarchical and oppositional. These include nature and culture; child and adult; animal and human; male and female; reason and emotion; mind and body; modern and traditional; raw and cooked; domestic and wild; urban and rural─among others. How might any of these formulations be examined and challenged (or not) in the context of Montgomery’s work? What does it mean to consider Montgomery as a “green” writer (Doody) or as a proto-ecofeminist (Holmes)? What do Montgomery’s provocative readings of nature offer us at a time of environmental crises and ecological preoccupations?

Please send one-page abstracts and short biographical sketches by September 15, 2009 to:
L.M. Montgomery Institute
University of Prince Edward Island
550 University Avenue, Charlottetown, PE C1A 4P3 Canada
E-mail: lmminst@upei.ca

Calls for Papers: Two L.M. Montgomery Conferences

The following calls for papers appeared in the program for “L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables, & the Idea of Classic,” the eighth international L.M. Montgomery Conference hosted by the L.M. Montgomery Institute of UPEI and held at the Delta Prince Edward Hotel in Charlottetown on 25-29 June 2008.

L.M. Montgomery—Writer of the World. International conference, Uppsala University, Sweden, August 20-23, 2009.

L.M. Montgomery’s world famous novel Anne of Green Gables has continued to attract readers from all over the world for a century. Our centenary conference is a tribute to all of those who have made 100 years of readership possible.

The main theme of the conference is “Reading Response.” We will explore reading experiences of Anne of Green Gables and other works by L.M. Montgomery. One section will be dedicated to Anne of Green Gables in Sweden. We also accept open proposals for papers on Montgomery’s works.

We invite you to send in one-page proposals for papers, together with a short biographical note.

Deadline: October 1, 2008. Send in your proposals to Conference Co-ordinator Gabriella Åhmansson at montgomery2009@ahmansson.com.

Queries? Please contact Conference Co-ordinator Åsa Warnqvist at asa.warnqvist@littvet.uu.se. More information on the conference will be published continuously at www.ahmansson.com/montgomery2009.html.

L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature. 9th International conference, University of Prince Edward Island, June 2010.

In 2010 we invite you to consider L.M. Montgomery and the matter of nature. While multiple romanticisms have informed L.M. Montgomery’s passionate views of nature, her descriptions were complex as she wrote both of and for nature. What are the effects of the representations and images of nature that are crafted and circulated in the fiction of Montgomery, and in that of other writers of literature (especially for children and youth)? How do her narrations of nature shape children and adults within and across cultures? How do seasonality and place function in her life writing? How do particular constructions of nature work in fiction, across such differences as gender, race, culture, and class? What are the cultural and historical contingencies surrounding nature in Montgomery’s work?

In recent years, the matter of “nature” itself has been the subject of much-contested debate and theoretical innovation across disciplines. Nature situates binary relationships that are often represented as hierarchical and oppositional. These include nature and culture, child and adult, animal and human, male and female, reason and emotion, mind and body, modern and traditional, raw and cooked, domestic and wild, urban and rural—among others. How might any of these formulations be examined and challenged (or not) in the context of Montgomery’s work? What does it mean to consider Montgomery as a “green” writer (Doody) or as a proto-ecofeminist (Holmes)? What do Montgomery’s provocative readings of nature offer us at a time of environmental crises and ecological preoccupations?

Please send one-page abstracts and short biographical sketches by June 30, 2009, to:

L.M. Montgomery Institute, University of Prince Edward Island, 550 University Avenue, Charlottetown, PE C1A 4P3 Canada. E-mail: lmminst@upei.ca.