RSVP Annual Conference

The Research Society for Victorian Periodicals holds its annual conference each summer or early fall at a different location in North America or Europe, on a theme relating to Victorian culture and society as reflected in its periodicals.

Call for papers:

Work/Leisure, Duty/Pleasure

Annual Conference of the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals 25-27 July 2019 University of Brighton, UK

Proposals are invited for 20 minute papers or panels of three or four related papers that address any aspect of the Victorian periodical or newspaper press. Proposals relevant to the Conference theme of Work/Leisure, Duty/Pleasure would be particularly welcome. Topics that might be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • The ‘work’ of making periodicals (authorship, editing, printing, illustrating, designing).
  • The depiction of work or leisure in the periodical press.
  • The responsibilities of the press.
  • The pleasures of reading or writing for magazines and newspapers.
  • The growth of entertainment as an aspect of the periodical press.
  • Specialist periodicals on sports and pastimes.
  • Carnal pleasures – sexuality, pornography.
  • Gastronomy, dining out, drinking.
  • Travel and tourism, the rise of the seaside resort, the pleasures of opulence.
  • Holidays and social commingling.

Proposals should be submitted before 1 February, 2019 at the RSVP application portal at

Applicants will complete a short information form and upload the following documents to the portal:

  • Proposals for papers: A 250-word abstract with a title plus a separate 75-word biographical statement.
  • Panel Proposals: A set of three or four 250-word abstracts with titles plus a general title for the session. Include 75-word biographical statements for each participant.

Graduate students and independent or retired scholars may indicate on the form that they wish to be considered for RSVP travel awards for attending the conference and presenting a paper. All those giving a paper at the RSVP conference are required to be members of the Society.


This year our conference was jointly sponsored by the Victorian Studies Association of Western Canada (VSAWC).

The Body and the Page in Victorian Culture: An International Conference

26-28 July 2018, University of Victoria, Canada

Highlights from the conference included special collections sessions with the University of Victoria Library, a series of workshops including: bookbinding, grants-crafting, and printing, as well as the usual panel sessions showcasing new research in the area of Victorian periodicals. You can view the programme from the conference here.

The Wolff Lecture was given by Professor Sally Shuttleworth (University of Oxford). It was entitled ‘Fearful Bodies in Late Victorian Medicine and Culture’.

The Colby Prize lecture was delivered by Margaret Beetham, Alexis Easley, John Morton, Andrew King, and Joanne Shattock. A recording of the lecture can be watched here.

Some photos from the conference: