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Unmasking Masquerade: Exploring Disguise and Display Across the Humanities

An Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference Presented by The McGill English Graduate Student Association

February 14-16, 2014 - Thomson House (3650 rue McTavish)

 “Masquerades, I have generally heard said, were more silly than wicked,” declares one respectable character in Samuel Richardson’s Sir Charles Grandison (1754), “but they are now, I am convinced, the most profligate of all diversions.” Richardson’s disapproval of the bal masqué’s vulgar dissipation represents just one incarnation of a rich and multivalent concept. In various guises masquerade capers and creeps through the humanities, eluding any single form or function: noun or verb? literal or figurative? sinister or celebratory? deceitful or mischievous? Inspired by such a panoply of meaning, this conference will address the idea of masquerade in diverse forms – theoretical and material – and across various fields, including but not limited to: literature, film, video game studies, history, geography, cultural studies, and digital humanities. 

Featured Events:

Friday February 14, 5:30 pm, Faculty Address by Prof. Erin Hurley, McGill University

“Masks or Faces: The Subject and the Object in Some Recent Performances by Nathalie Claude and Pol Pelletier”

Saturday February 15, 5:30 pm, Keynote Address by Prof. Lauren Gillingham, University of Ottawa

“Being Real: Fashion, Fiction, and Sociability in Britain, 1750-1850”

Saturday February 15, 8:00 pm, Informal Black and White Ball

(à la Truman Capote’s 1966 masquerade)

For more information, please visit our website, mcgillmasquerade.wordpress.com, email mcgillmasquerade [at] gmail [dot] com, or tweet #masquerade2014.