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Call for Essay Contributions on “Protest in the Long Eighteenth Century”

Call for essay contributions on “Protest in the Long Eighteenth Century”


This project for a volume on “Protest in the Long Eighteenth Century” originated from the 2018 meeting of The American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, and more specifically from a panel titled “They Were Warned, and yet They Persisted.” The initial invitation to submit abstracts for the conference reminded us of examples of popular protest, opposition, and resistance, as for instance,: the riots which resulted from the rising prices of bread and other food staples in England, France, and Spain; as well as of the Esquilache Riots in Madrid triggered by the “new” policies on hats and coats; or the Spitalfields riots and executions brought about from the displeasure with foreign competition and attacks on silk weavers’ looms in London. The presentations examined the causes of the protests, as well as the ways in which common artifacts such as poles, trees, drums, conchs, pamphlets or songs, among other alternative media of communication, may have symbolized adherence to a particular viewpoint and therefore operated as flashpoints for conflict. The papers and the ensuing discussions reminded us that resistance in the eighteenth century was everywhere, and that, like today’s pink knitted “pussy” hats, hoodies, and hashtags, resistance against injustices, abuse, or inequality also took many forms.


The week before the conference we were contacted by and later met with a commissioning editor for history from an international academic publisher who wanted to discuss the possibility of developing and expanding the topic into an edited volume. This call for essay proposals stems from that panel and those discussions. The goal is to gather a collection of strong academic and research-oriented essays on the long eighteenth century with an interdisciplinary approach on the theme of Protest. We hope to bring past and present into conversation at a time when the efficacy and limits of protest are questioned. The cohesive volume would include between 10 and 15 essays (7500-8000 words including notes and works cited) distributed in chapters that explore topics such as:

- the myths of placid tranquility

- the contested right of protest

- the legality of and theories on protest

- strategies and goals of protest

- the culture of protest and reaction

- popular protests and unpopular policies

- riots and riot control

- audiences and targets of protest

- allies and coconspirators

- collusion and complicity

- intersectionality

- transatlantic and transnational boundaries

- rural and urban forms of resistance and noncompliance

- verbal and non-verbal means and mediums of protest

- the limits of satire and parody

- food and food prices as cause and means of protest

- clothing, apparel, and fashion as means and provokers of protest

- art, music, dance as forms of protest and resistance

- environmental conflicts and social protest - common property and communal use of land

- other forms, causes, artifacts, means of resistance


We invite authors from diverse backgrounds, fields, and approaches to submit the following word-documents by August 31, 2018: - a 500-word abstract in which you describe the approach or topic to the overarching theme of Protest in the Long 18th Century. - a condensed 2-page CV Please write to both yfuentes@westga.edu and mmalin@rmc.edu, and include the words: “VOLUME ON PROTEST + your surname” in the email subject line.

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