CFP: The Bildungsroman, form and transformations

The Bildungsroman: form and transformations

A conference hosted by the Novel Network at the University of Sydney, 22-25 November 2018

This conference will explore the past and present condition of the Bildungsroman, with its myriad transformations and diversifications not only in the novel proper but also in memoir, film and long-form television. It will bring together exciting work in disciplines often separated by periodising and disciplinary paradigms and gather experts in prose fiction, film and television from the eighteenth to the twenty-first centuries and from a range of language areas to concentrate on this key narrative form. The novel of the emotional and social development or formation of a young person as they learn to make their way in an often hostile world, the Bildungsroman ­was a key form taken by the European novel from the early 19th century. How has it made its way across transhistorical formations and transgeneric remediations?


Nancy Armstrong, Gilbert, Louis & Edward Lehrman Professor of English, Duke

Joseph Litvak, Professor of English and Chair of Department, Tufts

Katie Trumpener, Emily Sandford Professor of Comparative Literature and English, Yale

We invite proposals for individual papers, panels, roundtables and single text discussion sessions, on the following or other related topics. The panel format will involve pre-submission of the paper to ensure closer audience engagement with its arguments:

Theory and the bildungsroman

The bildungsroman, the künstlerroman, the erziehungsroman: overlaps and distinctions

The origins of the bildungsroman

The contemporary bildungsroman

The female bildungsroman

The queer bildungsroman

Gender in the bildungsroman

Narrative theory and the bildungsroman

Psychology and the bildungsroman

The postcolonial bildungsroman

The coming of age film as bildungsroman

The bildungsroman and television

The Bildungsroman and the city

Transnationalism and the bildungsroman

Memoir and the bildungsroman

The anti-bildungsroman

The eco-bildungsroman

200 word abstracts should be emailed by June 15 to

Image credit: Boy, Taika Waititi 2010 via

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