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George Eliot and Philosophy Symposium

On Friday 6 December 2019, CRPLA will host a symposium in celebration of George Eliot's 200th birthday.

Location: Wolfson Research Exchange (Library, Floor 3 extension - note that room needs Warwick ID for entry)

Provisional programme ( a few details may change):
11.00 - 11.50 Michael Meeuwis (Warwick): 'The Loamshire Ideology: Eliot, Austen, and Aphorisms'
11.50 - 12.40 John Rignall (Warwick emeritus), 'Nietzsche and George Eliot'
12.40 - 13.00 Two short talks by Emma Mason and Eileen John (Warwick)
13.00 - 14.00 Lunch (own arrangements)
14.00 - 14.50 Patrick Fessenbecker (Bilkent), 'George Eliot's Critique of Utilitarianism'
14.50 - 15.10 Two short talks by Fern Ennis and Daniele Lorenzini (Warwick)
15.10 - 15.30 Coffee/tea break
15.30 - 15.45 Short talk by Jo Carruthers (Lancaster), 'Eliot, Schiller and everyday philosophy'
15.45 - 16.35 Clare Carlisle Tresch (KCL), 'George Eliot and Spinoza's Ethics: Philosophical Formations'
16.35 - 16.45 Short break
16.45 - 17.15 Roundtable conversation
17.15 - 18.00 Wine and toasting GE!

The event is free and open to the public, but please register to attend by e-mailing Eileen John (eileen.john@warwick.ac.uk).

George Eliot birthplace, South Farm, Arbury

'Men can do nothing without the make-believe of a beginning. Even Science, the strict measure, is obliged to start with a make-believe unit, and must fix on a point in the stars’ unceasing journey when his sidereal clock shall pretend that time is at Nought. His less accurate grandmother Poetry has always been understood to start in the middle; but on reflection it appears that her proceeding is not very different from his ... No retrospect will take us to the true beginning; and whether our prologue be in heaven or on earth, it is but a fraction of that all-presupposing fact with which our story sets out.'

George Eliot, Daniel Deronda (Ch. 1)

'Apparently, their recipe for solving all such difficulties is something like this: Take a woman’s head, stuff it with a smattering of philosophy and literature chopped small, and with false notions of society baked hard, let it hang over a desk a few hours every day, and serve up hot in feeble English when not required. … Great writers, who have modestly contented themselves with putting their experience into fiction, and have thought it quite a sufficient task to exhibit men and things as they are, she sighs over as deplorably deficient in the application of their powers. “They have solved no great questions”…'

George Eliot, ‘Silly Novels by Lady Novelists’ (1856)