Brown Bag Biography with Dr. Emily West
November 19, 12:00pm - 1:15pm
Mānoa Campus, Zoom
“Materializing Queer Genealogies at Horace Walpole's Strawberry Hill”
Dr. Emily West, Assistant Professor, Department of English, University of Hawaii at Manoa Cosponsored by the Department of History and Hamilton Library
Meeting ID: 954 9489 9581
This talk focuses on Horace Walpole, a key figure in the history of the Gothic through his authorship of the first Gothic fiction (1764's The Castle of Otranto) and his design of a faux-Medieval castle at Strawberry Hill in London. Through a close reading of one artifact from Strawberry Hill -- a lantern designed to create Gothic atmosphere at the home's entrance -- I trace how Walpole appropriates the materials of genealogical projection to generate instead queer forms of intimacy, inheritance, and temporality. The lantern's material aesthetics illuminate how Walpole's Gothic functions as a fundamentally queer form committed to destabilizing dominant enlightenment models of history, futurity, and linear time: models conceptually premised on the heteropatriarchal family’s generational continuity.
Emily West is an assistant professor in the English Department at UH Manoa. Her current research focuses on eighteenth-century science and technology, gender and sexuality, material culture, and childhood, on which she has published in The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation, Eighteenth-Century Fiction, and Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies.
Center for Biographical Research, Mānoa Campus
Zoë E. Sprott, (808) 956-3774, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://blog.hawaii.edu/cbrhawaii/