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Women’s past and future

21 September 2007
Huygens Institute, The Hague

On September 21 2007, the NWO digitizing project The International Reception of Women’s Writing (Utrecht University, 2004-2007) has been officially closed.
The Research Institute for History and Culture (OGC), hosting the project, has organized a study day on this occasion, at the Huygens Institute.
The project’s global output has been presented and its impact discussed for ongoing international research, which is being prepared in the context of the NWO project New approaches to European Women’s Writing (Utrecht University; 2007-2010).

Morning session:
Women’s Writing – New Approaches Becoming Possible

At the closure of this project, we have presented the tools produced (structure and content) as well as the possibilities created for future research by the database WomenWriters. In particular we have discussed its use by advanced students.

Welcome : coffee, tea etc.
Suzan van Dijk (director of the project; UU):
Welcome and presentation of the database WomenWriters as a research tool and a virtual collaboratory for researchers and students.
Stephanie Walker (Women’s studies student, participating in BA-course by Babs Boter 2006-2007; UU):
The case of the American women writers and the Dutch male historiographers.
Ann Böckle (French literature student, participating in MA-course by Rotraud von Kulessa 2006-2007; Ludwigs Universität Freiburg):
The course “Creating cultures: Women and cultural transfer” (Freiburg, 2006).
Gillian Dow (Southampton University and Chawton Library):
A new Master-unit at Southampton (2007-2008): The reception of European women’s writing in a European context (1770-1830).


Afternoon session:
Women Writers - The Importance of Being Named

Contributions have considered the fact that many of the women authors figuring presently in the database WomenWriters had long been completely forgotten, and that thanks to our approaching them via contemporary reception or early literary history we found their names – albeit often not much more....
On the other hand these authors, when writing (for example) their novels, had to choose names for their fictional characters. This naming is one of the aspects we want to be able to analyze when studying women’s literary history: indeed names are charged with significance, and some names more than other.

Suzan van Dijk:
Introduction - Readers revealing the names of female authors. The case of the writing Susanna’s.
Karina van Dalen-Oskam (Huygens Institute):
Names in literature: an introduction to literary onomastics.
Yvonne Bleyerveld (UU):
Chaste and devout: Susanna as a paragon of virtue in Netherlandish art, ca. 1450-1650
Suzan van Dijk:
An arbitrarily chosen corpus: written Susanna’s. Propositions for future analyses.

SvD, April 2008

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