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Rural Geographies Symposium

Rural Geographies of Gender and Space, Britain 1840-1920


A symposium at the University of Warwick, 23rd September 2011






Whilst discussions of gender and space in the nineteenth- to early-twentieth century have typically focused on “women and the city”, rural spaces offer equally productive contexts for exploring the intersections between gender and space in this period. As the socio-spatial relations of the country are impacted by the move into modernity, rural environments are revealed in literary and historical texts as sites of complex, contradictory and changing gendered codes.

This half-day symposium offers a long-overdue forum in which to resituate the rural as a vital context for understanding the meanings of gender and space in this period. By bringing together scholars from different disciplinary perspectives we aim to understand the diverse experiences of gendered rural spaces and contribute to discussions about theoretical approaches to the (rural)space-gender intersection.

Proposals are invited for short papers from scholars in literary studies, history, geography, and any other discipline; postgraduate and early career researchers are especially encouraged to apply. Themes for discussion could include:

  • theories of gender and rural place: what do we mean by rural space, how do we theorise “the rural” as a spatial context, and how does gender intersect?
  • the impact of modernity;
  • mobility: walking, vagabonds, pedestrians, wayward women;
  • labour, class and gender in the country;
  • masculinities;
  • different ruralities;
  • visibility/ invisibility

Please send a 300-word proposal for 15 minute papers by 15th August to the conference organisers Gemma Goodman and Charlotte Mathieson