“Liberation, Occupation — Inspiration Bonaparte? Literary and Artistic Responses to Napoleon”


Thursday November 13 - Sunday November 16 2014 at the Karl Anatol Center, California State University, Long Beach.


Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) remains a fascinating, ambivalent, and polarizing figure some 200 years after his defeat at Waterloo in 1815. From the onset of the French Revolution in 1789, responses of authors and artists ranged from celebrations of a dawning age of liberation to prophesies of anarchic violence. The rise of Bonaparte from General (1795) to Consul (1799) and Emperor (1804) constitutes a paradigm shift from an Age of Revolution defined by the philosophy of happiness — through individual and national autonomy — to a period of republican military dictatorship that at once inspired, disappointed, and outraged thinkers around the world. As a representative of the liberation ideals of the French Revolution and a threat to regional concepts of autonomy through occupation and regime change, Napoleon is one of the most paradoxical inspirations ever to ride the horse of (literary and art) history.


The conference student organizing committee of the CSULB Department of Romance, German, and Russian Languages and Literatures invites investigations of literary and artistic responses to Napoleon Bonaparte. Papers by students are especially encouraged and will be given preference. The conference language will be English.


Possible topics include but are not limited to:


Prelude: Artistic Responses to French Occupations from 1792-1798

Artistic Responses to Napoleonic Occupations from 1799-1815

Artistic, Musical, and Cinematic Responses to Napoleon

Bonaparte as Liberator and Reformer

Pro- and Anti-Napoleonic Poetry, Drama, Literary Prose, and Publications

Literary Correspondences on Bonaparte

Bonaparte, Literature, and Art in Latin America and North America

Bonaparte, Literature, and Art in Africa, Asia, and Australia

Bonaparte Satire and Caricature

Artist Responses to Regime Change and the Ideals of the French Revolution

Sine Bonaparte Non: Artists Obsessed with Bonaparte

Bonapartism and the Bonapartist Legacy in Literature and Art


Please submit one-page abstracts in English to [log in to unmask] by June 30 2014.
The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: