The English Institute 2002

The 2002 meeting of the English Institute will explore new work under four headings, continuing our format (topic, genre, author, text) but with a few twists to allow for more resonance between the four panels. It has been our recent practice to have a panel on an individual author, selecting the individual on the basis of wide significance, influence, and popularity. This year, instead of choosing an individual author, we are devoting a panel to the topic of Author-Love, allowing a more general theoretical consideration of the sort of interest behind such choices of a particular author. The phenomenon of Author-Love could in fact be an example of the broad set of practices to be explored in the panel on Uncritical Reading. While our most basic disciplinary formation might be our belief in “Critical Reading,” this panel will question the limitations of that view by considering the value of other reading practices, in other contexts, for other aims. Continuing with our interest in the varieties of passionate response, we have chosen for our genre panel to look at Polemic. Considering diverse polemical sites and discourses, we hope to garner a critical sense of how polemic functions as genre. With all our varied focus on passion versus criticism, we have selected Kant’s “What is Enlightenment?” as this year’s text for discussion. Over the past few years, we have ended English Institute with these group discussions of short key theoretical essays, affording us the unusual opportunity to work together on a text. This year we have decided to move further back in time to examine a fundamental text for our modernity.

We are pleased to announce online registration for the 2002 Conference. You can now register online. If a fee is owed, we offer credit card processing including Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Discover, or you may print out the completed registration form to be mailed in with a check or money order. Our registration form is secure and your credit card transaction is protected by SSL, the internet standard for encryption. Click here to register online.

I. Author-Love

Directed by Claudia L. Johnson, Princeton University

Saturday, 2:00 p.m.
Helen Deutsch, University of California, Los Angeles
Johnsonian Romance

Saturday, 3:30 p.m.
Sharon Marcus, University of California, Berkeley
Author Love/Hate: Contemporary Novels, Victorian Subjects

Sunday, 9:30 a.m.
Ann Pellegrini, University of California, Irvine
Authorial Accessorizing

II. Polemic

Directed by Jonathan Crewe, Dartmouth College

Friday, 9:30 a.m.
Amanda Anderson, The John Hopkins University
Argument and Ethos

Friday, 11:00 a.m.
Louis Menand, The Graduate Center of the City University of New York
What Was All That About? Kael’s Attack on Sarris

Saturday, 11:00 a.m.
James Young, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Polemic as Process in the Sites of Memory

III. Uncritical Reading

Directed by Michael Warner, Rutgers University

Friday, 2:00 p.m.
Amy M. Hollywood, Dartmouth College
Reading as Self-Annihilation

Friday, 3:30 p.m.
Lawrence Scanlon, Rutgers University
Submissive Reading: Early Medieval Penitentials and the Body of Belief

Saturday, 9:30 a.m.
Vincent Crapanzano, CUNY Graduate School
Reading and Rereading Otherwise

IV. Kant

Led by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Columbia University

Sunday, 11:00 a.m.
Roundtable on Kant’s “What is Enlightenment?”
(readings will be available online shortly)

Coffee, Muffins, and Registration

9:00 a.m. each morning of the conference


12:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday
(on our own)


A festive reception will be held on Friday at 5 p.m.

For more information and registration materials, contact:

Mary Elizabeth Wilkes, Conference Coordinator

12 Quincy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

Author-Love, Polemic, Uncritical Reading, Kant
61st Session, 2002
Publication Date: 
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Harvard University
Date of publication: 
September 20-22, 2002
Past Conferences Date: 
Friday, September 20, 2002 to Sunday, September 22, 2002