[Milton-L] IMS8 - Deadline - 12

Christophe TOURNU christophe.tournu at wanadoo.fr
Sat Sep 18 14:48:25 EDT 2004

Dear Members of the Milton-L,
We would like to invite you all to submit abstracts for the Eighth
International Milton Symposium, which will be hosted by the University of
Grenoble 2, France, 7-11 June 2005. 
As you know, papers are sought on "Milton, Rights and Liberties" and
proposals on other aspects of Milton studies will also be welcome. The
deadline to submit proposals is 30 September 2004. You will find more
details on our website (http://www.john-milton.org) 
There we will also find information on travel, accommodation and
registration fees. The social programme will include a performance of
Handel's "Samson" by the University of Grenoble Symphony Orchestra.

We look forward to hearing from you. 
With best wishes,

Christophe Tournu
The IMS 8 representative

IMS 8,

France : Grenoble, 7-11 June 2005


If John Milton (1608-1674) is well-known in France for his poetry, most
notably for his epic Paradise Lost which Chateaubriand immortalized in 1855,
he is much less known for his political writings. Even if the literary
dimension of Milton should not be ignored, we should reassess him as a
political thinker in the numerous pamphlets he has left us - especially as
he was Latin secretary for the English Republic. This 8th International
Milton Symposium, "Milton, Rights and Liberties" will pay a tribute to
Milton the literary figure and the political writer.

Preliminary notice

Grenoble is the cradle of the French Revolution. At Grenoble on June 7, 1788
as regional Parliaments were closed down by Louis XVI, the people rose up
and threw tiles at the garrison sent to subdue them (It was called the "Day
of Tiles"). The Estates general of Dauphine were held in Vizille on July
21st, 1788 and they ignited the French Revolution.

English republicans found their way into the discourse of the French
Revolution. Milton, Nedham and James Harrington were translated or adapted
by French revolutionaries to fit their own purposes. Mirabeau, the first
President of the National Assembly, translated Milton's Areopagitica as "Sur
la liberte de la presse, d'apres Milton" and his First Defense of the
English People as "Theorie de la royaute, d'apres la doctrine de Milton" in
1788, which was ominiously republished as Defense du Peuple anglais, sur le
jugement et la condamnation de Charles premier, roi d'Angleterre. Par
Milton. Ouvrage propre a eclairer sur la circonstance actuelle ou se trouve
la France. (Valence, 1792)

Milton's masterpiece, Paradise Lost, was translated for the first time into
French by Dupre de Saint-Maur in 1743 (the very year Handel performed
"Samson"), and the work was republished in 1792.

Obviously, the French Revolution wanted to recuperate Milton.

The 8th Intl. Milton Symposium purports to be transdisciplinary: specialists
of English literature as well as specialists from other disciplines (i.e.
history, philosophy, art, law, politics, theology) are invited to bring
their own contribution to the promotion of Milton studies.

The perspective we suggest is the passage from  an age when the main
objective of government was to establish rules for the life and well-being
of the body politic to an era when people became increasingly aware of deep
changes in the structures  of society. Up to the 13th century, nobody paid
much attention to the rights of man. We owe the emergence of a new idea of
rights to the struggle against the arbitrary  power of absolute monarchy
between the Magna Carta (1215) and the Petition of Right (1628). The defence
of rights and liberties arose much earlier and was more intense  in Great
Britain than elsewhere. Rights and liberties were defended most prominently
by John Locke at the end of the XVIIth century and this defence was extended
in America  in the War of Independence (1776-1783).  It reached a climax in
the Declaration of Human and Citizen Rights during the French Revolution in


Hence the questions: what status does Milton lend to rights in his works?
What is his conception of law and justice? What is his idea of liberty? On
what documents  and principles does he base the rights  and liberties he
defends? What kind of  liberties does he  claim? What heritage has he left


This main theme is not intended to exclude other topics. The  organisers
would  welcome suggestions for sessions on other themes. Indeed, papers on
any aspect of Milton studies will be welcomed, and will be grouped with
similar papers to generate themed sessions


Please send an abstract of your proposal (250 words) before September 30,

by e-mail:

ims8 at upmf-grenoble.fr


by snail mail:

Centre Historique & Juridique des Droits de l'Homme


Faculte de Droit

73, rue des Universites - Domaine universitaire

BP 47

38040 GRENOBLE Cedex 9


A performance of Handel's Samson, a highlight for the conference

Milton's tragedy Samson agonistes (1671) is perfectly in line with the main
conference theme. That's why we have thought we could arrange a performance
of Handel's Samson (1743), an oratorio in 3 acts adapted from Milton's last
dramatic poem, with a libretto by Newburgh Hamilton.

Handel's Samson will be presented at The Summum in Grenoble on 10 June 2005
at 7:30 PM by the Symphonic University Orchestra of Grenoble conducted by
Patrick Souillot and directed by Gil Galliot. It will be produced by a local
company, Business & Tourisme.


The Symphonic University Orchestra of Grenoble, which will perform Handel's
Samson in connection with IMS 8, is presided over by Jean-Paul Stahl,
Professor of Medicine at the University of Grenoble 1.

The Conference is to be held at the School of Law in Grenoble.

It is to be organized by the Centre of Studies for Historical and Legal
Studies on Human Rights, University of Grenoble 2 (contact : Marie Zanardi,
marie.zanardi at upmf-grenoble.fr or Christophe Tournu,
christophe.tournu at upmf-grenoble.fr) in association with many regional
research centers, including the University of Grenoble 3.

Tel. / Fax: 0033-476-825-728

The President will be Neil Forsyth, Professor of English at the University
of Lausanne, Switzerland.

Information, registration and hotel reservation online on our website:

We look forward to seeing you all in Grenoble in 2005.

Christophe TOURNU
Associate Professor 
Faculte de Droit
Universite Pierre Mendes France
Domaine universitaire
BP 47
38040 GRENOBLE Cedex 9
Tel. / fax: 0033476825728
Web: http://www.john-milton.org

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