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HomeVictorians like us – Domesticity and worldliness

Victorians like us – Domesticity and worldliness

Issue of “Open Cultural Studies”

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Published on Tuesday, June 13, 2017


From novels to government reports, the Victorians attached unprecedented significance to domesticity. The household was a central institution, and their occupants played out their different roles according to custom and circumstance. Within its sphere, gender, class, economic and political conflicts were played out as the household provided the background for important social practices. These practices ranged from the kitchen to the parlour, from the street to the Houses of Parliament, from the colonial metropole to the British colonial outposts in Africa, Asia, Australia and the Pacific.



The discourses of Victorian domesticity have been the subject of quite a few publications over the last decades. These approaches stress the interdisciplinary potential for interpretation of the characteristics of the period and often underline the strands of radical thought which encouraged aspirations for upward social mobility. However, the inquiry into the performance of domesticity and the management of privacy by, for instance, some of the leading figures of the Victorian period remains still rather unexplored, with untapped critical potential. 

Bringing domesticity into the big picture and foregrounding paradoxes of historical continuity and disruption, the focus of this special issue will be on the various forms, objects and modes of circulation that have been invested in the Victorians’ unprecedented attachment to domesticity, across a wide range of literary, artistic, cultural and political texts. This issue aims to reclaim texts that have been heavily trespassed by earlier readings structured around the public/private and virtue/vice antinomies, across disciplinary boundaries (literature and history; cultural, gender and film studies; English literature, postcolonialism and transnational contexts). Furthermore, this issue also intends to bring the Victorians to the present by examining post-Victorian revisitation of both earlier texts and leading protagonists in fictional and real-life stories. We welcome contributions from established scholars in Victorian studies and researchers who are newer to the field. 

Suggested topics for articles for the special issue include:

  • Practices of reading – paper and book circulation, the publication of popular fiction and anthologies
  • Practices of collecting  and the emergence of art galleries and museums
  • Art and interior decoration
  • Gender roles and familial relations 
  • Democracy, party politics and parliamentary reform
  • Revisitations of the empire and imperial expansion in the twentieth- and twenty-first centuries 

Contributions beyond the scope of those listed here will also be considered on a case-by-case basis, where a clear argument for strengthening the diversity of the issue can be made.

Edited by

How to submit

Those interested in contributing should contact Dr Izabella Penier at De Gruyter Open (izabella.penier@degruyteropen.com) in the first instance, with the suggested subject for their submission.

All submissions should follow the guidance at the below link: https://www.degruyter.com/view/supplement/s24513474_Instruction_for_Authors.pdf

The deadline for expressions of interest will be 30 April

and for final manuscript submissions 1 July 2017. 

Contributors should note that, as this special issue will be published online in the first instance, it will be possible to include any colour images included in submissions.


  • Toby Miller, University of California, Riverside, USA

Managing Editor

  • Izabella Penier, Izabella.Penier@degruyteropen.com

Editorial Advisory Board

  • Deeptha Achar, The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, India
  • Ece Algan, California State University,  USA
  • Juan-Antonio Álvarez-Pedrosa, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
  • Jesús Arroyave Cabrera, Universidad del Norte, Colombia
  • Sarah Banet-Weiser, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, USA
  • Susan Bassnett, University of Glasgow, UK
  • Chua Beng Huat, National University of Singapore, Singapore
  • Alessandro Carrera, University of Houston, USA
  • Desmond Cheuk-kuen Hui, Hang Seng Management College, Hong Kong
  • Miyase Christensen, Stockholm University, Sweden
  • Umberto Curi, Univeristy of Padua, Italy
  • Simon During, University of Queensland, Australia
  • Richard Dyer, King’s College London, UK
  • Anthony Y. H. Fung, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • Dilip Gaonkar, Northwestern School of Communiction, USA
  • Kelly Gates, University of California San Diego, USA
  • Gretchen Gerzina, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
  • Marie Gillespie, Open University, UK
  • Rainer Guldin, Università della Svizzera Italiana, Switzerland
  • Yang Guorong, East China Normal University, China
  • Jack Halberstam, Columbia University in the City of New York, USA
  • Dal Yong Jin, Simon Fraser University, Canada
  • Baron Kelly, University of Louisville, USA
  • Thomas Kemple, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Roy Krøvel, Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences, Norway
  • Thomas Kuehn, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany
  • Jack Linchuan Qiu, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • Vivian Liska, University of Antwerp, Belgium
  • Joost van Loon, Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Germany
  • Andrey Makarychev, Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies, Estonia
  • Anna Malinowska, University of Silesia, Poland
  • Verdicchio Massimo, University of Alberta, Canada
  • Ewa Mazierska, University of Central Lancashire, UK
  • Richard Maxwell, Queens College, City University of New York, USA
  • David Morley, Goldsmiths University of London, UK
  • Graham Murdock, Loughborough University, UK
  • John Nguyet Erni, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong
  • Nikos Papastergiadis, University of Melbourne, Australia
  • Riché Richardson, Cornell University, USA
  • Andrew Ross, New York University, USA
  • Tony Schirato, University of Macau, Macau
  • Jyotsna G. Singh, Michigan State University, USA
  • John Storey, University of Sunderland, UK
  • Graeme Turner, The Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH), Australia
  • Aimée Vega Montiel, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico
  • David Walton, University of Murcia, Spain


  • Saturday, July 01, 2017


  • Victorian, domesticity, practice


  • Izabella Penier
    courriel : ipenier [at] uclan [dot] ac [dot] uk

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Ana Cristina Mendes
    courriel : anafmendes [at] gmail [dot] com


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Victorians like us – Domesticity and worldliness », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, https://doi.org/10.58079/xuy

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