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Durham University

Centre for Catholic Studies


International Conference: Catholicism, Literature, and the Arts: 1850 to the Present

(26 April 2017)

Registration is now open for this conference, which will take place on 5-7 July 2017 in Durham, UK.

This conference is organised by the Centre for Catholic Studies at Durham University and Ushaw College and is supported by the Centre for Poetry and Poetics and the Centre for Visual Arts and Culture at Durham University, with co-sponsoring assistance from The Tablet, The Pastoral Review and the Catholic Theological Association of Great Britain.

The conference will bring together leading scholars to address key questions in the study of Catholic art and writing, including the question of whether there is a distinctive tradition of ‘Catholic literature’. Among the main topics and themes of the conference are Catholic memoir and autobiography; Catholic fiction and poetry; Catholic readership; journalism; publishers and archives; and the visual arts. The conference will include film, music, and the visual arts, as well as literature. It will also draw on works of art and literature closely associated with Ushaw College.

Featured speakers include:

  • Prof. Eamon Duffy 
  • Prof. Terry Eagleton
  • Prof. Paul Lakeland
  • Anna Lawson 
  • Dr Melanie McDonagh
  • HE Daniel Mulhall
  • Paul Anthony Murray 

The conference will also include short-paper sessions on topics such as: 

  • Spiritual autobiography
  • Sacred objects
  • Catholic poetry from Hopkins to Heaney
  • James Joyce and the Irish novel
  • Nineteenth-century religious painting and sculpture
  • Catholic book history and publishing

Conference poster

Conference programme

Conference fee (registration including refreshments): £70 (full fee), £45 (concessions). Various optional extras and hospitality packages available.

The deadline for registration is Wednesday 14 June 2017. Register online here. Alternatively, if you would prefer to pay by cheque, please download the booking form.

Enquiries to Theresa Phillips at or on +44 (0) 191 33 43952.