Friday, July 25, 2008

Breaking News! Brisbane Conference on Popular Romance, August 2009

Yes, folks, it's an official
Call for Papers:


An International Conference

August 13-14, 2009
Brisbane, Australia

Sponsored by

the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance (IASPR)
Queensland University of Technology
Romance Writers of Australia

and others

For decades, romance fiction has been the world’s most popular literary genre. Scholars from Australia, Canada, the UK, the European Union, the United States, and India have studied popular romance—its readers, its authors, its publishers, as well as the novels themselves—but they have done so largely in isolation: an approach that is hardly adequate to this rapidly evolving, thoroughly global creative industry.

On August 13-14, 2009, Queensland University of Technology will host the first International Conference on Popular Romance Fiction, to be held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Romance Writers of Australia. Featured speakers will include romance authors and academic scholars of the genre from Australia, the United States, and elsewhere.

The conference website will go live later this summer, with full logistical details and registration information; the URL will be announced on the RomanceScholar listserv and will be linked here on Teach Me Tonight. We can say for now that registration will be approximately $150 Australian (lunch included), and rooms at the conference hotel will run approximately $205 Australian / night (more with breakfast included). If funds to help with travel or expenses become available, we will announce them on the listserv and website.

We are interested in papers on all topics related to popular romance fiction as an international phenomenon: its authors, texts, publishers, and audiences, in the past or the present, anywhere in the world. Topics addressed might include:

  • Romance on the World Stage (texts in translation, romance manga, colonial and neo-colonial romance, non-Western writers, readers, texts, and publishers)
  • National romance traditions and the impact of global publishing on local authors, readers, publishers, and texts
  • Studies of individual authors, genres, or texts
  • Theoretical models for, or approaches to, the genre
  • The market for and readership of romance fiction, now or in the past
  • The romance publishing industry (in print and electronic)
  • New directions in Category Romance (recent and forthcoming lines, changing demographics, new markets and shifting audience demographics, etc.)
  • Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Romance, and same-sex love within predominantly heterosexual texts
  • Genre-Bending and Genre-Crossing authors and texts (erotic romance, SF romance, chick-lit, crossover texts, etc.)
  • Elements of the genre: heroes, heroines, plot structures, endings
  • Romance communities: authors, readers, websites, blogs

We welcome proposals from independent scholars, and from romance authors, editors, and publishers, as well as from those with academic affiliation. Feel free to copy and circulate this Call for Papers to other websites, listservs, and professional organizations.

Submit a one-page (150-250 word) proposal or abstract no later than January 15, 2009 to the conference organizers; email is preferred. Early proposals are encouraged, especially from the US, UK, EU, and other locales outside Australia. The earlier we hear from you, the earlier we can respond, and the earlier travel arrangements can be made.

Proposals and questions should be sent to:

Eric Murphy Selinger
Dept. of English
DePaul University
802 West Belden Ave.
Chicago, IL 60614
eselinge [at]

Dr Glen Thomas
Creative Writing and Cultural Studies
Creative Industries Faculty
Queensland University
of Technology
Victoria Park Road
Kelvin Grove, Q. 4059.
T: (+ 61 7) 3138 8284
F: (+61 7) 3138 8238
M: 0412 232 163
E: gj.thomas [at]

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