Academic Programme

Plenary Speakers

Prof. Deborah Philips (University of Brighton): “In Defence of Reading ‘Trash'”

Prof. Hsu-Ming Teo (Macquarie University, Sydney): “Falling in love with the past: History and the romance novel”

Prof. M. Socorro Suárez Lafuente (Universidad de Oviedo): “Love Stories: the Dialogical Tension between Emotion and Reason”

Guest Authors

Jane Kelder

Emily Benet

Toni Jordan

Detailed Programme (Final version)

Monday 9th July

9.30 Registration (Hall, Sa Riera Building)
10.00 Conference opening (Salón de Actos)
10.15 Keynote Lecture (Salón de Actos):

Prof. Deborah Philips (University of Brighton):

“In Defence of Reading ‘Trash’”

Chair: Paloma Fresno-Calleja

11.30 Coffee break
12.00 Parallel session 1A: LOVE AGAINST THE ODDS (ROOM 26)

Chair: David Río

Eva M. Pérez-Rodríguez (University of the Balearic Islands): “Like Old Bruises”: Widowhood and Family Traumas in Leah Fleming’s The War Widows and Sofka Zinovieff’s The House on Paradise Street

Miquel Pomar-Amer (University of the Balearic Islands): “The inescapable past: haunting memories of the war in Jo Eames’ The Faithless Wife

Federica Montella (University of Calabria): “Body, spaces of love, illusion and delusion in Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale.


Chair: Astrid Schwegler

Ingrid Pfandl-Buchegger (University of Graz): “Romantic E-scapes: The impact of digital communication on the writing of popular romances”

Elina Valovirta (University of Turku): “The stuff of which fairytales are made: The formula, readers and writers of popular e-romance”


13.30 Lunch break
15.00 Parallel session 2A: HISTORY AND ROMANCE I (ROOM 26)

Chair: Eva Pérez-Rodríguez

Carmen Pérez Ríu (University of Oviedo): “Neo-Victorian popular romance and the pleasures(?) of anachronism”

Toni Jordan (Deakin University): “Embracing the Hidden Romantic: Re-Evaluating the Genre Participation of Moliére Using Parodic Fictocriticism”


Parallel session 2B: MARKETING ROMANCE I  (ROOM 28)

Chair: Pilar Villar Argáiz

Paloma Fresno-Calleja (University of the Balearic Islands): “100% Pure Romance? Rosalind James’s ‘Escape to New Zealand’ Series”

Astrid Schwegler Castañer (University of the Balearic Islands): “Devouring Textual Love: The Culinary Metaphor in Contemporary Historical Romance”

16.00 Coffee break
16.30 Authors’ Round Table (Salón de Actos):

“Writing and Publishing Romance in the Digital Age”.

Emily Benet, Jane Kelder and Toni Jordan

Chair: Alejandra Moreno Álvarez


18.30 A Romantic Tour of Palma’s Old Quarter (Departing from conference venue)


Tuesday 10th July


Chair: Elisa Serna Martínez

Marta María Gutiérrez Rodríguez (University of Valladolid): “Love and Witchcraft: Contemporary Historical Romances about the Salem Witch Trials”

David Río Raigadas (University of the Basque Country): “Western Romance Novels: Escapism and the Cowboy Myth”

Silvia Martínez Falquina (University of Zaragoza): “Her Land, Her Love: Navajo Captivity and the Romance Novel”


10.30 Coffee break
11.00 Keynote Lecture (Salón de actos):

Prof. M. Socorro Suárez Lafuente (University of Oviedo):

“Love Stories: the Dialogical Tension between Emotion and Reason”

Chair: Carolina Fernández Rodríguez

12.15 Parallel Session 4A: ROMANCE AND THE EXOTIC (ROOM 26)

Chair: Lynda Gichanda Spencer

Pilar Villar-Argáiz (University of Granada): “History, Exoticism and Romance in Popular Fiction set in Ireland”

María-Isabel González Cruz (University of Las Palmas): “Exploring the Exotic Other and Paradise Discourse in a Sample of English Romances set in the Canaries”

Aurora García-Fernández (University of Oviedo): “Between Exotic Postcards and Green Activism: Environmental Preoccupations in Contemporary Australian Romance”

Parallel session 4B: REEL ROMANCE (ROOM 28)

Chair: Carmen Pérez Ríu

Raquel Álvarez-Riera Escandón (Universidad de Oviedo/University of Utrecht): “Violence in the Myth of Romantic Love: An Analysis of Suicide and Death as an Act of Love in Contemporary Film Adaptations of Romeo and Juliet

Marek Wojtaszek (University of Lodz): “Romancing the Digital: Sensory Interface and Algorithmic Desire in a Society of Anticipation.

Mislav Zivkovic (University of Zagreb): “ ‘Heaven is a Place on Earth’: Codes of Love and Fantasy in Black Mirror’s ‘San Junipero’ and ‘Hang the DJ’”

13.45 Lunch break

Chair: Irene Pérez Fernández

Lynda Gichanda Spencer (Rhodes University, South Africa): “ ‘A New Kind of Romance’: Romance Imprints and the Digital Age in Nigeria”

Cristina Cruz-Gutiérrez (University of the Balearic Islands): “ ‘Yeah, I love it too but just don’t romanticize it’: An African City at the Crossroads of Romance and InsubordiNation”

16.30 Coffee break

Chair: Miquel Pomar Amer

Manasi Gopalakrishnan (University of Cologne): “The quiet native: colonized women in historical romances”

Komal Vinayak Tujare (St. Mira’s Collage for Girls, Pune): “Retelling of the Female: Reading Mastani’s Historical Romance”

Alejandra Moreno Álvarez (University of Oviedo): “De-exotifying Romance Novels in Postcolonial India”

Muhammad Abdullah (Forman Christian College University, Lahore): “Emergent sexualities and intimacies in contemporary Pakistani Anglophone Literature”


21.00 Conference dinner (Es Baluard Restaurant)


Wednesday 11th July

9.30 Session 7: MARKETING ROMANCE II (ROOM 26)

Chair: Silvia Martínez Falquina

Carolina Fernández Rodríguez (University of Oviedo): “Nora Roberts’ Inn Boonsboro Trilogy: Fuelling the Myth of Romantic Love, Stoking the Fire of Consumerism”

Inmaculada Pérez Casal (University of Santiago de Compostela): “A Study in Contradictions: Feminism in Lisa Kleypas’ Ravenels Series”

Alison Lutton (Somerville College, University of Oxford): “Escaping Creative Conventions: Romantic Paratextual Innovation and Belonging in You-Tube-to-Print Field Migration”

11.00 Coffee break
11.30 Parallel session 8A: CARIBBEAN ANTI/ROMANCE (ROOM 26)

Chair: Cristina Cruz Gutiérrez

Irene Pérez Fernández (University of Oviedo): “Atoning the Colonial Past in Contemporary Caribbean Romance: Female Characters Challenging the Norms”

Elisa Serna-Martínez (Autonomous University of Madrid): “Painting Away Regrets, A Caribbean Antiromance by Opal Palmer Adisa”

Macarena García-Avello (University of Cantabria): “Resisting Genres: Angie Cruz’s Soledad and Nelly Rosario’s Song of the  Water Saints and the Anti-Romance”


Parallel session 8B: QUEERING ROMANCE (ROOM 28)

Chair: Alison Lutton

Elin Abrahamsson (Stockholm University): “Mas(s)turbatory Readings: A Queer Theoretical Analysis of Popular Romance”

Danielle Girard (Lancaster University): “The Queer Romance of Slash Fanfiction: From Fetishization to Orientation”

Mariana Ripoll-Fonollar (University of the Balearic Islands): “Opening Venues for Transgender Anti-Romance(s): “Cultivating Response-ability” in the web series Her Story


13.00 Keynote lecture (Salón de Actos):

Prof. Hsu-Ming Teo (Macquarie University):

“Falling in love with the past: History and the romance novel”

Chair: Aurora García-Fernández

14.15 Conference closure

The complete academic programme can be downloaded here