Events Calendar

Nathan Hensley lecture: " 'The mystery of the cruelty of things': Sovereignty and Form circa 1866"

March 9, 2018


3:00 PM - 4:30 PM

In this talk, ​Professor​ ​Hensley will unpack the argument of his recent book, Forms of Empire: The Poetics of Victorian Sovereignty (Oxford 2016)​, showing how the modern state's anguished relationship to violence pushed writers to expand the capacities of literary form. Drawing on two test cases -- the Jamaica insurrection of 1865 and A.C. Swinburne's Poems and Ballads, of 1866-- Hensley will show how literary technologies like the lyric poem, the dramatic monologue,​ and​ the heroic couplet helped Swinburne comprehend what John Stuart Mill and other commentators on the Governor Eyre controversy could not, namely the obscene violence at the heart of order​:​ "the mystery of the cruelty of things." The talk concludes by reflecting on its own​ comparative or paratactic​ method, disclosing how ​our own habits of historical analysis bear the imprint​, still, ​of the nineteenth century's turbulent engagement with ​modernity's intractable harm.​

Location

lower level SH Stevenson Hall

Fee

free

Audience

General public/Campus community/Faculty/Staff/Students/Alumni

Website

huminst.uic.edu/ifth/events/all-events/2018/03/09/ . . .

Contact

lvavra@uic.edu
312-996-6352

Category

Lectures, Seminars and Meetings/Conferences and Workshops

Department

Institute for the Humanities

Calendar

Institute for the Humanities

Last updated

01-02-2018

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