IASPR 2009 Conference Day 1 Afternoon

International Association for the Study of Popular Romance

The International Association for the Study of Popular Romance is hosting its first ever “Popular Romance Studies: an International Conference” in Brisbane, starting today. You can find more information, including the schedule, on the IASPR website.

We can’t be at the event, so we’re relying on live tweets to keep us up to date. If you have a Twitter account, the hashtag is #romcon, and you might also want to follow @IASPR. (Please note that Book Thingo is NOT in any way affiliated with IASPR.)

Click here to view the tweets from the morning sessions.

This is an archive of the Twitter stream. You can also view the tweets on ScribbleLive.

  • 1:50 PM: IASPR #romcon Kim Wilkins, UQueensland, Australia: “’Deliciously contrary’: Reimagining Medieval Women’s Agency in Australian Popular Romance”
  • 1:50 PM: IASPR #romcon Popular medievalism in Australia and serious literary/political agendas that Australian fiction supposed to comment on.
  • 1:51 PM: IASPR #romcon Medieval re-imagining as written by Australian romance authors. Powerful heroines are “exceptions” to actual medieval lot of women.
  • 1:59 PM: IASPR #romcon Focusing specifically on medieval romance written by Australians in particularly Australian context/perspective. V. cool.
  • 2:03 PM: IASPR #romcon Sarah Ailwood, University of Canberra, Australia: “The Hero in the Napoleonic Wartime Romance”
  • 2:04 PM: IASPR #romcon This wonderful woman used my dissertation as the basis for her disssertation. We likes her, we does. :)
  • 2:04 PM: IASPR #romcon Women writing men: how women write men can tell us about political, social, feminist concerns.
  • 2:06 PM: IASPR #romcon Desirable masculinity in Napoleonic-era England was site of much debate and confusion.
  • 2:07 PM: IASPR #romcon Revival of chivalry in early 19thC. Refinement of 18thC polite society and strength of English national character. Respect+courage.
  • 2:11 PM: IASPR #romcon 18thC/19thC domestic novels gives women an authority to critique and evaluate men.
  • 2:18 PM: IASPR #romcon The Guerilla Chief and Persuasion: heroes are soldiers/sailors. Set in specifically wartime context, written after war.
  • 2:22 PM: IASPR #romcon Men experience moments of weakness which specifically comments on chivalric gender stereotypes.
  • 2:24 PM: IASPR #romcon Desirable man has a fundamental reliance on his wife and family. Emotional dependence different from chivalric English masculinity.
  • 2:25 PM: IASPR #romcon Anthea Taylor, UQueensland, Australia: “Romance, Masochistic Desire and Vampiric Subject-Formation in the Twilight Novels”
  • 2:26 PM: IASPR #romcon Another one on Twilight! Woohoo!
  • 2:27 PM: IASPR #romcon Masochistic relationships in Twilight. Erotic desire is linked to death. Bataille: urge toward love is urge toward death.
  • 2:28 PM: IASPR #romcon Nina Auerbach: “Every age embraces the vampire it needs.” What does Twilight saw about our culture, then?
  • 2:32 PM: IASPR #romcon Self-loathing narrative voice in Twilight makes eroticism–>masochism–>death viable and desirable.
  • 2:36 PM: IASPR #romcon Eroticization of Edward’s dominance is problematic.
  • 2:49 PM: IASPR #romcon Bronwyn Clarke, U New England, Australia, and Romance Author: “The Heart of the Matter: Representations of Love in Romantic Fiction”
  • 2:49 PM: IASPR #romcon Fundamental assumption of paper: love exists. :)
  • 2:52 PM: IASPR #romcon Rarely see ongoing relationship after HEA. Critical for reader satisfaction to believe in HEA.
  • 2:53 PM: IASPR #romcon Are we entirely sure what makes a relationship work? What is love? We know it when we see it (like porn o_0).
  • 2:54 PM: IASPR #romcon Discomfort talking about love. We’d much rather talk about all the stuff around the actual definition of what love is.
  • 2:55 PM: IASPR #romcon “HEA” is actually picture of old couple, smiling at each other, very much in love. Never see that in romance novels.
  • 2:58 PM: IASPR #romcon Modern perspectives on love: pessimistic and cynical. Feminist perspective focuses on power, freedom, and choice.
  • 3:03 PM: IASPR #romcon Elements of lasting love: intellectual, social, respect.
  • 3:04 PM: IASPR #romcon We can use the framework of Elements of Lasting Love to establish how romance novels builds that love. Like the Flame and the Flower
  • 3:06 PM: IASPR #romcon Opposite of love is not hate but indifference.
  • 3:08 PM: IASPR #romcon Flame and the Flower known for violent beginning (rape) but we can see the aspects of lasting love being established.
  • 3:56 PM: IASPR #romcon Final panel of the day. Starting with…
  • 3:57 PM: IASPR #romcon Therese Dryden, Author, Australia: “Exploration of the ‘Barrier’ Element in Six Harlequin/M&B Sweet Novels from November 2008”
  • 3:58 PM: IASPR #romcon Considering six books in the “sweet” line of Harlequin romances published in a single month in 2008.
  • 4:00 PM: IASPR #romcon Barrier is conflict in the novel. Examining the 6 novels from aspect of romance element of barrier.
  • 4:02 PM: IASPR #romcon Internal barrier: 5 out of 6 novels had internal barrier and all internal barriers are the hero’s barriers. Fascinating.
  • 4:07 PM: IASPR #romcon External barriers: Geography, Time, Economics/Class, Other People, Acts of God, Duty.
  • 4:10 PM: IASPR #romcon Theme areas: Guilt/Responsibility, Health (physical/emotional), Duty, Family/Community, Christmas (Dec pub date).
  • 4:11 PM: IASPR #romcon Conflict must be resolved by significant sacrifice or by facing greatest fear.
  • 4:15 PM: IASPR #romcon Psychological focus is definitely the focus of these books. Tone is the thing that’s most different: comic to serious.
  • 4:18 PM: IASPR #romcon Diversity is still alive and well in romance novels.
  • 4:18 PM: IASPR #romcon Sandra Barletta, Independent Scholar: “A First Kiss is Still A First Kiss: Ageism, Romance Heroines and the Mid-Life Romance Reader”
  • 4:19 PM: IASPR #romcon Readers like to see themselves in heroines. But where are the older heroines?
  • 4:20 PM: IASPR #romcon Do older women live in romanceless future of menopause and moody children like Hamlet?
  • 4:21 PM: IASPR #romcon Gap exists b/t what romance industry is providing and readers who want to see mid-life romance stories.
  • 4:22 PM: IASPR #romcon What’s the rationale to say that heroines have to be under a particular age?
  • 4:23 PM: IASPR #romcon Getting older cannot be part of escapist romance fantasy. HenLit, MatronLit (GreyLit/GrannyLit/BoomerLit) do not have central rom.
  • 4:24 PM: IASPR #romcon Mature protagonists are not romance heroines. Aging is something to fear and avoid.
  • 4:25 PM: IASPR #romcon “Aging romance readers are recognized with large print books.” Aargh!
  • 4:29 PM: IASPR #romcon Hollywood understands that middle-aged women want romance. As has TV. Audience is ready and willing to accept older heroines.
  • 4:32 PM: IASPR #romcon Ongoing success of romance is because of its ability to adapt.
  • 4:33 PM: IASPR #romcon Is under-representation of older heroine “fault” of publisher or public or both?
  • 4:40 PM: IASPR #romcon Glen Thomas, Queensland University of Technology, Australia “From Reader to Writer”
  • 4:41 PM: IASPR #romcon Romance fiction author organizations (like RWA, both of them), are part of a creative milieu that fosters creative industry.
  • 4:43 PM: IASPR #romcon Author organizations gather creative practitioners with genre focus, rather than geographic focus (like New Orleans jazz milieu).
  • 4:44 PM: IASPR #romcon Can you force a place to be creative (like Kelvin Grove campus of QUT)?
  • 4:44 PM: IASPR #romcon If you can get good coffee, creative folks will flock there and be creative! Voila!
  • 4:55 PM: IASPR #romcon Romance novel associations professionalize aspiring romance authors. Shows how hard it is. Ongoing educative process.
  • 4:58 PM: IASPR #romcon Self-marketing is extraordinary feature of romance genre and authors.
  • 5:00 PM: IASPR #romcon Active consumer citizen of field. And active producer. Author is not isolated producer. Engages in network with other practitioners.
  • 5:00 PM: IASPR #romcon Making meaning and making money.
  • 5:23 PM: mcvane Good question. RT @IASPR Is under-representation of older heroine “fault” of publisher or public or both? #romcon
  • 7:56 PM: ddscottromcom Hollywood understands middle-aged women want romance. As has TV. Audience is ready & willing to accept older heroines. via @IASPR #romcon

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