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Welcome to the Nineteenth Century Studies Association website, where we hope you will find information about the Association, its interests and outlets, as well as enticements to join in the many conversations we have on and beyond these pages.

We are an interdisciplinary Association interested in exploring all aspects of the long nineteenth century, from science to music, from architecture to religion, from movement to literatures—and beyond. We hope you will peruse these pages as a volume inviting you to join us at our annual spring meeting, and we ask you to join our community of those with nineteenth century interests.

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Q&A: Rafael Ocasio

19 Cents

Rafael Ocasio, Charles A. Dana Professor of Spanish, is a Latin Americanist and a specialist in revolutionary and counterrevolutionary Cuban literature.  He is the author of two books on the Cuban dissident writer Reinaldo Arenas:  Cuba's Political and Sexual Outlaw (University Press of Florida, 2003) and The Making of a Gay Activist (University Press of Florida, 2007).

His book Afro-Cuban Costumbrismo: From Plantations to the Slums (University Press of Florida, 2012) examines the Costumbrista documentation of African and Black religious and musical folklore as part of the development of a national identity in Cuba.  Costumbrismo, a nineteenth-century literary movement associated with the recording of traditions, offers the earliest incorporation of Black themes, related to the booming sugarcane production in Cuba and to rich African traditions in major Cuban cities.

Ocasio is currently working on a book manuscript: Franz Boas in Porto Rico: Retention and Reinvention of Puerto Rican Folklore,” an edited, critical anthology of oral folklore documented by that reputable anthropologist in Puerto Rico in 1915.

He teaches courses on Latin American literature and film and Spanish-language courses at Agnes Scott College, Decatur, Georgia.

Have you ever had something happen to you professionally that you thought was bad but turned out to be for the best?: Experience has taught me to be more . . . 

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Monday, April 10, 2017/Author: Kate Oestreich/Number of views (2395)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: 5.0
Categories: The 19 Cents Blog

Membership Input Requested

NCSA plans to endorse the 1940 Statement of Principles of Academic Freedom and Tenure at this time; our board welcomes your input on that endorsement. As the invitation to join relayed, “its more than 240 endorsers include most of the major disciplinary societies in the United States. The historical strength and continued force of the 1940 Statement have been supported by a great number of institutional and independent studies and by numerous significant legal proceedings." At a time when American higher education is experiencing new and growing threats to tenure and academic freedom, we would be most pleased to add the Nineteenth Century Studies Association to the official list of endorsers.  

Prompted by recent events particularly, the Board is also seeking your input/comments on the statement (below) your elected Board is considering for our website. Please email any comments you wish to make directly at no later than Friday, 7th April. The Board will review your input (our president, Lucy Morrison, will present it anonymously unless you instruct otherwise) and then vote upon whether or not to post the statement to our website and other public arenas.

“The NCSA stands united with scholarly and other associations around the world in our commitment to academic freedom and social equality. We confirm our commitment not to discriminate based on age, color, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran and/or marital status.”

Friday, March 31, 2017/Author: Kate Oestreich/Number of views (1460)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: No rating
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Q&A: Daniel Brown

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Daniel Brown is currently an underemployed independent scholar. He received his Ph.D. in English, with a specialization in British Victorian literature, from the University of Florida in 2012. His research interests include realism, the novel, poetry, Pre-Raphaelitism, painting, photography, relationships between verbal and visual representation, gender (particularly masculinities), and post colonialism. His recent and first book, Representing Realists in Victorian Literature and Criticism (Palgrave MacMillan, 2016), argues that our understanding of realism came about by way of nineteenth-century writers’ attempts to understand what they saw happening in the visual arts. Other publications include a chapter on Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s portrait poems and visual representations of Jane Morris in the forthcoming collection, Poetry in Painting: The Lyrical Voice of Pre-Raphaelite Paintings, edited by Sophia Andres and Brian Donnelly; as well as chapters and articles in Victorians: a Journal of Culture and Literature (Spring 2012), The Blackwell Companion to Sensation Fiction, edited by Pamela K. Gilbert (Blackwell, 2011), and Nineteenth-Century Gender Studies (2007). Future research plans are to delve deeper into “thing theory” and representations of objects in realism.



In which directions do you think nineteenth-century scholarship should evolve in the near future?: I’d like to see a continuation of the trend towards trying . . . 

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Monday, March 27, 2017/Author: Kate Oestreich/Number of views (2047)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: 4.3
Categories: The 19 Cents Blog

CFP: Curiosity and Desire in Fin-de-Si├Ęcle Art and Literature


Saturday, February 25, 2017/Author: Maura Coughlin/Number of views (2087)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: No rating
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Call For Papers: NCSA 2018

VISTAS March 15-17, 2018 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 Call for Papers
39th Annual Conference of the Nineteenth Century Studies Association
March 15-17, 2018
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Jacques Gréber, The Proposed Parkway: View from Logan Square to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1918.

In honor of the 100th anniversary of Philadelphia’s Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the NCSA committee invites proposals that explore the notion of the vista in the nineteenth century. From personal gardens to public parks, from the street level to the top of a skyscraper, or from the microscope to the panoramic photograph, the nineteenth century was a moment when the idea of the vista changed from a narrow sightline to a sweeping, expansive view. How did theorists alter our historical perspective, broadening our notion of the world through science or religion? In what ways did power systems affect urban vantage points? How did man-made vistas reflect socio-cultural ideals? How did domestic spaces or nightlife transform with the widespread use of gas or electric lighting? How does the conceptual vista operate metaphorically? Topics might include horticulture, landscapes and seascapes, new technology, photography, sightseeing, film and the theater, urban planning, visions and dreamscapes, shifting perceptions of the gaze, or literary or artistic descriptions or depictions of viewpoints. In contrast, papers may consider the absence of vistas, such as mental or physical confinement or elements that obfuscate a view.

Please send 250-word abstracts with one-page CVs to by September 30th, 2017. Abstracts should include the author’s name, institutional affiliation, and paper title in the heading. We welcome individual proposals and panel proposals with four presenters and a moderator. Note that submission of a proposal constitutes a commitment to attend if accepted. Presenters will be notified in November 2017. We encourage submissions from graduate students, and those whose proposals have been accepted may submit complete papers to apply for a travel grant to help cover transportation and lodging expenses. Scholars who reside outside of North America and whose proposals have been accepted may submit a full paper to be considered for the International Scholar Travel Grant (see the NCSA website for additional requirements:

For a pdf version of the CFP click here.

Monday, February 06, 2017/Author: Maura Coughlin/Number of views (2854)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: No rating
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