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CCA Symposium: "Fenland, its Islands, and the Spaces in Between"

 

Tuesday, March 01, 2016, 04:30pm - 07:00pm

The extensive English swamplands known as the Fens—including but not limited to the islands of Ely, Crowland, March, Wisbech, Spalding, and Whittlesey—complicate definitions of island, mainland, and sea. Unsuited for conventional farming and difficult to govern, with easy access to the ocean, the Fens often stood as a region apart. Fenland was the haunt of outlaws, the home base for rebels, and the incubator of both political and ecclesiastical counter-cultures. The Neolithic causewayed enclosures of the Welland Valley, the Bronze Age wooden platform at Flag Fen, and the great monastic houses and churches that dot the islands and Fen-edge provide actual and conceptual spaces for contestation, where identities and categories are both problematic but negotiable in the places between wetland and dry land. Stories told within and without the Fens about saints (Guthlac and Pega) and outlaws (from Hereward the Wake to the eighteenth-century Fenland Tigers) mark the Fens as a place useful to think with and in.

The Fenland Symposium features presentations by experts in both literature and archaeology who will speak on the importance of the Fens as both a place and as an idea in English society. The discussion will be moderated by Jeremy DeAngelo and Thomas Leppard, postdoctoral fellows at the Center for Cultural Analysis. Reception to follow.

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Co-sponsored by the Department of History; the Program in Comparative Literature; the Center for African Studies; the Institute for Research on Women; the Department of African, Middle Eastern, and South Asian Languages and Literatures; the Department of American Studies; the Department of French; the Department of Geography; and the Department of Sociology.

Location

Murray Hall
510 George Street
New Brunswick, NJ, 08901

 

 
Events sponsored by the Center for Cultural Analysis are free and open to the public, unless specifically noted

 

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