The John Clare Conference 2003

Conference Schedule

The John Clare Conference runs from 5:00 p.m. Friday, March 21 to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, March 22, 2003.

Conference Director: James McKusick

Photos from the John Clare Conference

Friday, March 21, 2003:

3:00 p.m. - Conference check-in begins, Belmont Conference Center (Manor House)

5:00-5:45 p.m. - Opening Reception -- Cash Bar (Manor House) -- please wear your name tag.


5:45-6:45 p.m. - Session I: "John Clare's Life and Poetry" (moderated by James McKusick, University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Location: Meeting Room, Manor House)

"Clare's Career."  Michael F. Suarez, S.J., Fordham University, and Sarah M. Zimmerman, Fordham University

"Editing John Clare."  Eric Robinson, Falls Church, Virginia


7:00-8:00 p.m. Dinner (Dining Room, Manor House)


8:00-9:30 p.m. Poetry and Musical Performance (Ballroom, Manor House)

A reading of John Clare poems by Galway Kinnell, New York University

John Clare's Folk Songs, performed by Tim White (guitarist/vocalist) and Victoria Robinson (vocalist)


Saturday, March 22, 2003:

7:30-8:30 a.m. - Breakfast (Dining Room, Manor House. Buffet style -- drop by anytime before 8:00 a.m. Early-bird coffee is available at 7:00 a.m. Note: The Manor House breakfast is available only for overnight guests. Day-commuters should report to the Carriage House, where freshly-baked breakfast treats and coffee will be available for everyone by 8:45 a.m.)

Check-out procedures: Overnight guests should check out of their rooms by 10:30 a.m., and you may wish to do so by 9:00 in order to attend the first session. You may leave your luggage in the foyer of your residence, Manor House or Dobbin House, for pickup later in the day.


9:00-10:30 a.m. - Session II: "John Clare and the Natural World" (moderated by Scott McEathron, Southern Illinois University. Location: Meeting Room, Carriage House)

"A Speaking Place: The Matter of Genre in 'Swordy Well.'"  David Simpson, University of California, Davis

"Beyond Round Oak Waters: Clare's Riparian Verse."  Bridget Keegan, Creighton University

"Clare's Natural History Prose Elegies."  Alan Vardy, Hunter College, CUNY


10:30-10:45 a.m. - Break (refreshments, Carriage House)


10:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. -- Session III: "John Clare's Later Career" (moderated by Christoph Irmscher, University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Location: Meeting Room, Carriage House)

"An Invite to Alterity: John Clare's Hybrid Subject."  Gary Harrison, University of New Mexico

"Clare's Tragedies."  Sara Lodge, St. Andrews University

"'A tear drops on the book I read': Clare's Reading in the Asylum."  Joanna Ball, Trinity College Library, Cambridge


12:15-1:15 p.m. Lunch (Buffet style, Dining Room, Carriage House)


1:30-3:00 p.m. -- Session IV: "New Directions in John Clare Studies" (moderated by James McKusick, University of Maryland, Baltimore County. This session will present brief abstracts of new research on John Clare, followed by comprehensive round-table discussion. Location: Meeting Room, Carriage House)

"Old Language, Future Readers: Clare's Textual Practice." Paul Chirico, Jesus College, Cambridge

"Ekphrasis in John Clare's Rural Muse." Richard Gillin, Washington College, Maryland


A business meeting at a local restaurant will follow the conference at 3:30-5:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 22.  All members of the John Clare Society of North America are welcome to attend and participate.  To reserve a place at the business meeting, please register with the conference assistant, Maura Smyth, who can also arrange car-pools to various locations)


The conference will feature an exhibition of original prints and watercolors by Barbara Weber:

"John Clare and His Poetry, Muse for the Artist." (Location: Manor House)


Additional conference participants include:

Patrick Byrd, Tuskegee University

J. Nathaniel Goldsmith, University of Virginia

Mark D. Noe, Pennsylvania College of Technology

Maura Smyth, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Philip Terzian, Oakton, Virginia

Barbara and Len Weber, Corvallis, Oregon

Andrew Zahler, Portland, Oregon



The John Clare Conference organizers wish to express their warm appreciation to the following individuals and organizations whose hard work and generous financial support made this conference possible:

The John Clare Conference Committee: Bridget Keegan, Eric Robinson, Christoph Irmscher, Scott McEathron, and Sarah Zimmerman

The Advisory Board of the John Clare Society of North America: Anne Barton, Galway Kinnell, Mark Reed, and David Simpson

The Honors College, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

The English Department, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Oxford University Press

Belmont Conference Center

Photos from the John Clare Conference 2003

How to Join the John Clare Society of North America

John Clare Society of North America Main Page

John Clare Links