Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Online Gothic Fairies Conference, April 2021

The Open Graves, Open Minds Project announce their online conference, ‘Ill met by moonlight’: Gothic encounters with enchantment and the Faerie realm in literature and culture. This conference is uniquely situated at the intersection between folklore, fairy tale, and the Gothic. It celebrates the darker aspects of fairies and their kin and marks the centenary of the publication by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle of the infamous Cottingley Fairies photographs in the Strand Magazine (Dec 1920). 

It is broadly interdisciplinary, embracing literature, art, folklore, film, TV, photography, fashion, performance, gaming, and fairy fiction writing. Our journey into the history of the fae will see us explore a diversity of media and genres, from early modern burlesque poetry and Victorian fairy painting, to fairies on stage and recent cinematic interpretations of the Cottingley Fairies; from Paranormal Romance, steampunk and fairy fashion, to the twenty-first-century fae of Young Adult Fiction and TV’s Carnival Row.

The conference boasts eight keynotes, including Prof. Owen Davies, President of the Folklore Society and Dr Merrick Burrows, Curator of the forthcoming Cottingley Fairies Exhibition (Brotherton Library). We also have Dr Sam George (Associate Professor of Research, University of Hertfordshire) on ‘Fairy Lepidoptera’; Prof. Diane Purkiss (Keble College, Oxford), ‘Where Do Fairies Come From?; Prof. Catherine Spooner (Lancaster University), ‘Glamourie: Fairies and Fashion’; Prof. Dale Townshend (Manchester Metropolitan University), ‘The fairy kind of writing’: Dr Maisha Wester (Indiana University; Global Professorship Fellowship, University of Sheffield), ‘Nalo Hopkinson’s Folkloric Revisions of Classic Fairytales and Myths’; Dr Ivan Phillips, Associate Dean, School of Creative Arts, University of Hertfordshire, ‘What the Puck?’.

Delegates are invited to take part in a range of exciting fairy themed activities, including a wine and wings social, a fairy flash fiction writing competition, and workshops by YA fantasy writer Betsy Cornwell (Tides, Mechanica, Venturess) on the creative adaptation of fairy lore; and Dr Ceri Houlbrook (University of Hertfordshire; Magical Folk (2018)), on outreach in the field of folklore studies for postgraduate students and ECRs.

You can view the full programme here of keynote talks, panels and papers, and other events. Tickets are available for individual days or for all four days (with a reduction) and there are concessionary tickets for unwaged and postgraduates (we ask that you pay what you can afford as this is a not-for-profit project).

Fees are:
£10/ day (full rate)
£35 for all four days
£7/day (unwaged/PGs)
£25 for all four days (unwaged/PGs)

Booking Link:


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