Accessibility statement

Distance Conference 2020

Monday 3 August 2020, 9.00AM to 14 August 2020

The long eighteenth century saw the experience of cultural distance through overseas voyages, reading, travel, and trade. The diverse interactions afforded by travel and the subsequent encounters shaped the cultural and historical outlook of a developing global eighteenth century. In 2020, physical and social distance has once again become a defining feature of our society, and this virtual conference invites all to consider how our current situations can bring a new appreciation for how distance was integral in the communities and cultures of eighteenth-century society.
To accommodate the new physical restrictions in our own academic landscape, the conference will be held virtually. It will operate on a combined platform:
  • Postgraduate presenters will be advised and supported in pre-recording presentations. These will be uploaded onto a dedicated google site for conference delegates.
  • Keynote speeches and other conference activities will take place on Zoom at scheduled times during the conference period.
We welcome abstracts for either traditional papers of 20 minutes or lightning talks of 3-5 minutes in length. Traditional papers will be organised into standard three-paper panel formats, and lightning talks into smaller, more informal, roundtables to prompt discussions throughout the conference.
Paper and lightning talks may explore topics including, but not limited to:
  • Encounters: Cultural, political and religious, communities and diasporas, transatlantic families
  • Production: Textual, visual, physical and liminal spaces of production, trade
  • Communication: Circuits, networks, conversations, epistolary practices
  • Mobility: Transportation, social mobility, trans-national movement
  • Material Culture: Tokens of affection, popular consumption, clothing and embodiment
  • Space: Architectural design, religious, private vs. public, emotional boundaries, intimacy, personal boundaries
  • Exploration: Travel narratives, cartography, natural science observations 
Please visit the conference website and submit abstracts under the "Apply" tab on the homepage: by 5pm BST 29 June 2020:
Notifications of acceptance will be sent out by 6 July 2020. If you have any questions, please email


Location: Online conference