CFP: Rock and Romanticism
NOTE: This page is continually being updated as I receive proposals or ideas for proposals. Please check the list below for topics covered. I am happy to accept more than one essay about the same figure, but of course these essays need to take different approaches.
The editor of Rock and Romanticism is soliciting essays about the ways in which rock music, broadly defined, expands, interprets, restates, and conflicts with Romanticism, broadly defined. “Rock music” as a category will be extended to include all popular music since the 1950s, including but not limited to rock, varieties of metal, R&B, soul, varieties of punk, folk, techno, progressive rock, indie, new wave, alternative, psychedelic, industrial, gothic, funk, country, and blues. If the music has been written or performed since the 1950s and you’re wondering if it fits, the answer is “yes.”  For the purposes of this study, “Romanticism” will also be broadly defined, considering trans-European, trans-Atlantic, and global Romanticisms as well as Romanticism in literature, art, and music.
You can see a list matching potential musicians and Romantic-era literary figures, a provisional bibliography, and a sense of how I’m theorizing Romanticism on the blog post “Romanticism and Rock.”
Papers might consider
- women in rock and women in Romanticism;
- lyric poetry and song lyrics or song lyrics as lyric poetry;
- readings of rock and Romanticism that compare
- conditions between Europe during the Napoleonic wars and conditions in the post-McCarthy era and/or post 9-11 United States,
- the 1960s or later Ireland or the UK, or
- 1960s or later continental Europe, including Eastern Europe and the Baltic states (any possible essays on Rammstein and Romanticism?);
- the gothic in literature and in music;
- opera and the rock opera;
- drug use, drug literature, and drug music of the eighteenth, nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries;
- the pastoral in Romantic literature and in rock music;
- adaptations, interpretations, direct responses to, and performances of Romantic-era texts by twentieth-century and later musicians;
- the figure of Satan in Romanticism and in rock;
- protest literature and protest music;
- sexual identity in Romanticism and rock.
Ideal papers will theorize or historicize their subjects in a way that places rock music in a coherent dialog with Romantic-era art, literature, or music, contributing to a consideration of the boundaries or definition(s) of “Romanticism” as an artistic mode while also considering the implications of chronological, national, social, sexual, and/or economic difference. Papers from contemporary artists/musicians reflecting upon the influence of Romantic-era art, literature, or music upon their work are also welcome.
Please email a 250-500 word proposal that includes your name, title, institutional affiliation (if applicable), mailing address, email address, and a brief, updated CV to firstname.lastname@example.org by August 1st, 2015. Completed papers, which should be within the 5000-7000 word range, are expected by November 15, 2015.
You can see a list of artists and poets with a provisional bibliography on the blog post “Romanticism and Rock.”
I have received notice of interest or proposals for the following figures:
|Musician/Artist||Romantic Era Connection||Status|
|David Bowie and Brian Eno (late 70s)||Wordsworth/Coleridge, Lyrical Ballads||Proposal received and accepted|
|Nick Cave||Romanticism/transgressive artist||Proposal received and accepted|
|60s Dylan (not comprehensively)||Blake and the Beat poets||Proposal received and accepted|
|Dylan||Keats and Shelley, or just Shelley||Awaiting proposal|
|Marilyn Manson’s Triptych||Blake and Bryon||Proposal received and accepted|
|Various: it is a contribution by the author/director of a staged version of Werther set to music by Lou Reed, Florence and the Machine, Rhianna, etc.||Goethe, The Sorrows of Young Werther||Proposal in development|
|Woody Guthrie, Ballads of Sacco and Vanzetti||Theorizes Guthrie’s ballads using Sayre and Lowy’s “Figures of Romantic Anti-Capitalism”||Proposal received and accepted.|
|Iron Maiden||Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”||Awaiting proposal|
|Norwegian Black Metal||Primitivism/return to nature||Awaiting proposal|
|The Pretenders, Pretenders||William Blake, Vision of the Daughters of Albion, comparing female responses to male aggression and passivity.||Proposal received and accepted.|
|Martha Redbone’s Roots Project||William Blake||Proposal in development|
|Rolling Stones, “Sympathy for the Devil”||Milton’s Satan||Awaiting proposal|
|U2, Songs of Innocence||Blake||Awaiting proposal|
|Van Morrison||VM himself as a Romantic poet, comp. to several Romantic-era figures, particularly Blake||Proposal received and accepted|
|4AD Records’s This Mortal Coil project (includes The Cocteau Twins)||Walpole, Beckford, Shelley and Lewis||Proposal received and accepted|