44th Annual Meeting of the International T. S. Eliot Society

Boston, Massachusetts, 22-24 September 2023

Friday 22 September

For a Google map locating the conference hotel, the libraries, Emerson Hall, and the Barker Center, click here. The map’s menu lets you send these directions to your phone. A pdf map of our conference buildings is here.

For access to Harvard’s Wireless network, click here and follow the instructions.

9:15-10:00 Registration: Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library

10:00-12:00  Peer Seminars: 3 will be held in  Houghton Library classrooms and will run concurrently with the first panel session. The 4th peer seminar will be held on Saturday morning. No auditors, please: seminars open only to those who’ve registered and submitted a paper. See details about the seminars at the bottom of this program.

10:00-11:30  1st Panel Session: Edison & Newman Room

Chair: Patrick Query, West Point

Anita Patterson, Boston University: Eliot’s Black Arts Legacy: Robert Hayden, the Middle Passage, and The Waste Land

Anthony Shoplik, Loyola U. Chicago:  “Shall I at least set my lands in order?”: The Self and the Land in Eliot’s Early Poems

Elysia Balavage, Case Western U.: Eliot Among the Shadows

11:30-1:00  Lunch—on your own (here’s a select list of restaurants for lunch and dinner)

1:00-1:30 President’s Welcome Forum Room, Lamont Library

1:30-3:00  2nd Panel Session–concurrent panels:

Session 2, Panel A: Forum Room, Lamont Library

Chair: Julia Daniel, Baylor U.

Will Brewbaker, Duke U.: “the sea bell’s / Perpetual angelus”: On Eliot’s Marian Poetics

Cécille Varry, Oriel College, Oxford: Eliot and the Language of Liturgy

Gabrielle McIntire, Queen’s U.: Ecology and Voice: Non-Human Speech in The Waste Land

Session 2, Panel B: Hofer Classroom, Houghton Library

Chair: Christopher McVey, Boston U.

Seth Lewis, Harvard U.: “To Carthage Then I Came”: Recovering Dido in The Waste Land

John McIntyre, U. of Prince Edward Island: Eliot and the 1918/19 El Niño

Ian Webster, Exeter: T. S. Eliot: a seriously unprofessional economist

3:00-3:15  Break

3:15-4:15 3rd Panel Session, Forum Room, Lamont Library

Chair: David Chinitz, Loyola U. Chicago

Isabelle Stuart, Worcester C., Oxford: All Together Now: Eliot’s Choral Voice in Context 

Jayme Stayer, Loyola U. Chicago: Eliot and Suffering: Clues from the Marginalia

4:15-4:45 Announcements from Jayme Stayer, Tony Cuda, Frances Dickey, Patrick Query, John W-F

4:45-5:00 Break

5:00-6:30 44th Annual T. S. Eliot Memorial Lecture: Harvard Faculty Club

Chair: John Whittier-Ferguson, U. of Michigan 

Linda Gregerson, U. of Michigan: “Eliot and Ignorance”

The Lecture and the Reception to follow will be held in the Harvard Faculty Club’s Main Dining Room. The Lecture is free and open to the public; there is a charge for the Reception.

6:30-8:00  Conference Reception, Harvard Faculty Club–Main and East Dining Rooms

Saturday 23 September

The morning and later afternoon sessions (Panels 4 and 6) will be held in the Philosophy Department’s Emerson Hall, room 305; the concurrent panels (Panels 5 a. and b.) will be held in the Barker Center

9:30-11:30 Peer Seminar 4: Barker 114

10:00-11:30 4th Panel Session: Emerson Hall 305

Chair: Kevin Rulo, Catholic U.

Michael Coyle, Colgate U.: “After Such Knowledge”: Eliot and the Problem of the Public Intellectual

Philip Coleman, Trinity C. Dublin: Eliot and the Problem of Periodization

Tong Liu, Stanford U: From Hydrophobia to Geophilia: Eliot and “the genius of the Shore”

11:30-1:30 Lunchon your own

1:30-3:00 5th Panel Session–concurrent panels

Session 5, Panel A: Barker 024

Chair: Ria Banerjee, Guttman Community College, CUNY

John Matthew Steinhafel, Catholic University of America: Blackness in The Family Reunion and Invisible Man: The Influence of Eliot’s Drama on the Fiction of Ralph Ellison

Valentina Monateri, U. of Turin: “Please Tell Me Who Kandinsky Is”: The Young Eliot among the Rococo, Victorian, and Modernist Visual Arts

Justin Stec, U. of Virginia: Eliot’s “Ultra-Dramatic”: A Rhetorical Poetics of Character Speech in “A Game of Chess”

Session 5, Panel B: Barker 133

Chair: Craig Woelfel, Flagler U.

Christina J. Lambert, Hillsdale C.: Urban Feast and Ancient Sacrifice in The Cocktail Party

Fabio L. Vericat, U. Complutense de Madrid: “Don’t make it arty”: Eliot’s Sweeney Agonistes and the Fashioning of the Modernist Playwright

Anthony Cuda, U. of North Carolina, Greensboro: Harry, Hale, and the Three Reunions

3:00-3:15 break

3:15-4:45 6th Panel Session: Emerson Hall 305

Chair: John Morgenstern, Emory U.

Megan Quigley, Villanova U.: “Perfectly good, normal and right”: Eliot, Attraction, and Intimacy

Frances Dickey, U of Missouri: Sewers and Flowers: Eliot and the Smells of St. Louis

Eve Sorum, U. Massachusetts, Boston: Eliot Pays Attention

5:00-5:20 Announcements of Awards (and details about Sunday’s trip): Emerson Hall 305

Sunday 24 September: Trip to Gloucester, MA

Further notes on the Gloucester trip may be found at this page.

Shuttle leaves Harvard Square Hotel, 110 Mount Auburn Street, at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday the 24th

ETA in Gloucester at 10:00 a.m.

Shuttle pickup in Gloucester at 2:00 p.m.

Shuttle arrives at Logan Airport, Boston, at c. 3:00 p.m.

Shuttle arrives back at our conference hotel at c. 3:45 p.m.

Peer Seminars

no auditors, please

10:00-12:00 Friday Morning

Seminars 1-3 will run from 10:00-12:00 on Friday morning; Seminar 4 will run on Saturday morning from 9:30-11:30.

  1. Sumita Chakraborty (North Carolina State U.) “Eliot and the Creative Arts” (Hyde Room in Houghton)
    1. Yim, Kenny Sui-Fung, Middlebury College
    2. Marianne Huntington, independent scholar
    3. Rachel Trousdale, Framingham State U.
    4. Junichi Saito, Kanagawa U.
    5. Mike Rogalski, actor
    6. Will Brewbaker, Duke U.
  1. Kamran Javadizadeh (Villanova U.) and Megan Quigley (Villanova U.): “Close Reading Eliot” (Seminar room in Houghton)
    1. Marianne Thormählen, Lund University, Sweden
    2. Frances Grace Fyfe, Concordia U.
    3. Caroline MacRae, U of Edinburgh
    4. Zak Erickson, Columbia
    5. LeeAnn Derdeyn, U. of North Texas
    6. Yuval Lubin, Historical Archivist for the Jewish National Fund
    7. Tong Liu, Stanford U.
    8. Youngmin Kim,  Dongguk U.
  1. Ria Banerjee (Guttman Community College, CUNY) and Julia Daniel (Baylor U.): “Eliot in Dialogue” (Hofer Room in Houghton)
    1. Chen Lin, Visiting Scholar at Loyola U. Chicago
    2. Ivona Laushevikj, Blazhe Koneski in Skopje
    3. Xu Xiaofan, Beijing Foreign Studies U.
    4. Ben Papsun, Tufts U.
    5. Umar Shehzad, U. of Edinburgh
    6. Qiang Huang, Beijing Foreign Studies U., China
    7. Norbert Gacek, Jagiellonian U., Kraków
    8. Martin McKinsey, U. of New Hampshire
    9. Joe Dworetzky, journalist
    10. Valentina Montari, U. of Turin
    11. Ian Webster, U. of Exeter
    12. Michael Polesny, CUNY

Peer Seminar 4 will run from 9:30-11:30 Saturday morning (Barker 114)

  1. Stephanie Burt (Harvard U.) and Michelle Taylor (Emory U.): Four Quartets
    1. Jonathan Diaz, Baylor U.
    2. Frances Wear, U. of Victoria
    3. Yibin (Jerry) Yang, U. of Edinburgh
    4. Mike Rogalski, actor
    5. Alana Murphy, SUNY Buffalo
    6. Nika Mavrody, journalist
    7. Ed Upton, Valparaiso U.

The T. S. Eliot Studies Annual is published by Liverpool University Press and Clemson University Press. These two presses also have active lists in Eliot studies. They will have a representative at our conference, and they are circulating this flyer to conference attendees.

Grateful thanks to Patrick Query, Aakanksha Virkar, Jayme Stayer, Anita Patterson, and Frances Dickey, as well as the rest of the Eliot Society Board for help in planning. Thanks, too, to David Chinitz for making everything run smoothly with the membership, registration, and cost-accounting for the conference. Thanks to David, also, for managing the mailings to members. At Harvard, thanks are due to Peter Accardo and the staffs of the Houghton and Lamont libraries. Thanks for the support of the Committee on Degrees in History and Literature and its leadership–Lauren Kaminsky, Director of Studies, and Phil Deloria, Leverett Saltonstall Professor of History. Thanks, too, to Susanna Seigel, Edgar Pierce Professor of Philosophy, and to Kate Grant, Robbins Library Coordinator for the Department of Philosophy.