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Sociability in Politics, Food and Travel in the Early Modern Era

8-10 June 2023, in-person at the University of Warwick

This international conference, which is open to researchers at all levels of their career, aims to explore new insights on forms, models and practices of sociability interpreted and analysed through the themes of food, politics and travel. These constitute three of the four strands currently being explored in the new scientific programme (2023-2025) of the GIS Sociability international network.

Keynote lectures: Prof. Dena Goodman (University of Michigan) and Prof. Rebecca Earle (University of Warwick)

To register email Please indicate the days you wish to attend for catering purposes. Please note that the dinner on Friday 9th June is a closed event reserved for speakers and chairs.

Conference programme

Thursday 8 June 2022

Faculty of Arts Building, University of Warwick central campus
Room: FAB 2.43 (Faculty of Arts Building, 2nd Floor)
13.00 Welcome and Introduction

13.15-14.30 Panel 1: Women and International Diplomacy in Eighteenth-Century Europe and the Atlantic World

Chair: Naomi Pullin (University of Warwick)

Kristine Dyrmann (University of Oxford) – ‘The Salon as an Informal Diplomatic Space’.

Natalie Hanley-Smith (University of Warwick) – ‘“Gallantry Filled Up The Evenings and Mornings”: Flirtatious Sociability on the Late Eighteenth-Century Grand Tour.’

Tom Cutterham (University of Birmingham) – ‘The Sackville Street Plot: Revolution Behind Closed Doors’.

14.30-14.45 – Break

14.45-16.15 Panel 2: Public Opinion, Drink and Popular Politics in Early Modern Britain

Chair: Valérie Capdeville (Université Sorbonne Paris Nord)

Brian Cowan (McGill University) – ‘The Public Sphere in Early Modern Britain’

Hannah Straw (University of Warwick) – ‘“Blame Him That Debauched Him”: Homosocial Drinking and Moral Panic in Restoration London’.

Angela McShane (University of Warwick) – ‘Drink and Political Song in Early Modern England’.

Dave Steele (University of Warwick) – ‘The Belly of the Crowd in Nineteenth Century England’.


16.15-16.30 – Break


16.30-18.00 – Keynote Lecture

Rebecca Earle (University of Warwick) – ‘Food and the Colonial Experience’


18.00-19.00 – Drinks Reception and Canapés


Friday 9 June 2022

Faculty of Arts Building, University of Warwick central campus
Room: FAB 2.43 (Faculty of Arts Building, 2nd Floor)

09.00-10.15 Panel 3: Contentious Political Sociabilities in Long Eighteenth-Century Britain

Chair: Kimberly Page-Jones (Université de Bretagne Occidentale)

Maria Tauber (University of Warwick) - “Allow Yourself Some Time to Be Easy and Cheerful Among Your Friends and Enemies” – Local Political Sociability in National Politics.

Anna Pravdica (University of Warwick) – ‘Oaths of the Many Great and Worthy Persons By Whom They Were Regarded’: Politically Potent Sociability in the Douglas Cause.

Brendan Tam (University of Warwick) - “Bringing Pitt Forward Again, in Spite of Himself” – The Political Instrumentality of Sociability.


10.15-10.30 – Break


10.30-12.00 Panel 4: The Sociability of Global Travel in the Long Eighteenth Century

Chair: Tom Cutterham (University of Birmingham)

Margaret Small (University of Birmingham) – ‘Sociability and the Solitary Traveller’.

Anna Harrington (PhD University of Birmingham) - ‘The Bottle We Passed Three Times Round’: Shipboard Sociability for Middling and Elite Passengers Travelling on East Indiamen, c. 1757-1835’.

Eleonora Sasso (University of Chieti-Pescara) – ‘Byron and the Sociability of Travel: The Romantic Struggle for Freedom Between East and West’.


12.00-13.00 – Lunch


13.00-14.30 Panel 5: Credit, Trust and Food the Sociability of in the French Revolutionary Era

Chair: Charles Walton (University of Warwick)

Ronan Love (University of Warwick) – ‘The Rise and Fall of Jacques Necker: Public Credit and Public Opinion from the Old Regime to the French Revolution’.

David Andress (University of Portsmouth) - “He is a False Man. I Shall Dine at His Paris Home Tomorrow”: Trust, Sociability and Personal Relations in French Revolutionary Politics.’

Marisa Linton (Kingston University, London) – ‘When Dining was Dangerous: Political Sociability Amongst the Jacobins of the Year II’.

Denise Davidson (Georgia State University) – ‘Food and Bourgeois Sociability: Rebuilding Society after the French Revolution’.


14.30-14.45 – Break


14.45-16.00 Panel 6: Drinking Sociability in Early Modern Europe

Chair: Rebecca Earle (University of Warwick)

Beat Kümin (University of Warwick) – ‘Spaces of Wine Consumption in Early Modern Europe’.

Persida Lazarević (University of Chieti-Pescara) – ‘Balkan Eighteenth-Century Drinking Sociabilities’.

Jan Blonski (European University Institute) – ‘Taverns and Drinking Culture in the Early Modern Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth’.


16.00–16.15 – Break


16.15-17.45 – Keynote Lecture

Dena Goodman (University of Michigan) – ‘The Convergence of Family and Friendship: Intellectual Sociability in the Wake of the French Revolution’.


19.00 – Dinner Scarman Conference Centre, University of Warwick (for speakers only)


Saturday 10 June 2022

Faculty of Arts Building, University of Warwick central campus
Room: FAB 5.03 (Faculty of Arts Building, 5th Floor)

9.00-10.15 Panel 7: The Food and Drink Experiences of Travellers in 18th-century Scotland

Chair: Beat Kümin (University of Warwick)

Sabrina Juillet Garzon (Université Sorbonne Paris Nord) – ‘The Scots and Their Food in the Testimonies of British and French Travellers in the Eighteenth-Century Scottish Highlands and Islands.’

Marion Amblard (Université Grenoble Alpes) – ‘The Scots and Drinking in the Testimonies of British and French Travellers in the Eighteenth Century in the Scottish Highlands and Islands.’

Tri Tran (Université de Tours) – ‘Eating on the Road: Food and Social Practices of Transatlantic Highland Migrants During the Long 18th Century’.


10.15-10.30 – Break


10.30-12.00 Panel 8: The Culture of Political Sociability in Early Modern Europe

Chair: Mark Philp (University of Warwick)

Miriam Sette (University of Chieti-Pescara) – ‘William Godwin and the Romantics: Celebrity Culture and Politics’.

Rowena Willard-Wright (National Trust) – ‘Art and Diplomacy – The 3rd Duke of Dorset’.

Isabelle Le Pape and Isabelle Degrange (Bibliothèque Nationale de France) – ‘Food practices in the Bibliothèque nationale de France's collections’.

Ben Jackson (University of Birmingham) – ‘Gendered Mobility in Eighteenth-Century England: Men, Women, and Private Carriages’.