Centre for Studies in Literature

Writing War

Conference 2007

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Mark Rawlinson (Leicester)

The 'war on terror' and the war in Iraq have stimulated debates over security and civil liberties in which the rights of the individual body are often pitched against the demands of the national corpus. This is an apposite moment to examine the ways in which twentieth-century literary and historiographical representations of conflict, nation and corporeality came to shape our way of thinking about war today.

  • How does twentieth-century war writing represent the body-at-war, exhilarated or in protest, in torture or torturing, in uniform, or subjected to new ways of dying?
  • How does it depict the collective national body, in its geographical boundaries, topoi or metaphors, its military representatives and its civilian contingent?
  • What kind of war writing comes to represent a canonical literary or historiographical corpus of texts with specific ideological functions?
  • How does war writing construct or deconstruct national identities? How does it reflect or respond to contemporary agendas and revisions?
  • How does war writing define 'war'?

This symposium gathered a range of perspectives on British and non-British war writing from established scholars working on literary and cultural studies as well as history and sociology. 


  • Gabriel Koureas (Birkbeck, London)
  • Grace Brockington (Cambridge)
  • Marina MacKay (Washington St Louis, Missouri)
  • Eugene McNulty (Portsmouth)
  • Jodie Medd (Carleton, Ottawa)
  • Lucy Noakes (Brighton)
  • Patricia Pulham (Portsmouth)
  • Petra Rau (Portsmouth)
  • Richard Robinson (independent)
  • Lyndsey Stonebridge (UEA)
  • Victoria Stewart (Leicester)

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