Seton Hall University

University Brings Together International Scholars for Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon, Biennial Aphra Behn Society Conference November 4–6  

Aphra BehnResearchers from the U.S., Canada and the U.K. will gather at Seton Hall University and The Grand Summit Hotel in Summit, N.J., for a Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon and the biennial conference of the Aphra Behn Society for Women in the Arts, 1660-1830 from Wednesday, November 4 through Friday, November 6.

"Sponsoring an academic conference is a real demonstration for any university of its commitment to scholarship and the scholarly mission of educational institutions. It raises the profile of the University considerably," said Society President Karen Gevirtz, associate professor of English and co-director of the Women and Gender Studies Program. "It's a big affirmation of the University's commitment to scholarship, and it's also a statement on the international level so that everyone can really see who we are and what we believe in."

The Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon will begin at The Grand Summit Hotel on Wednesday, November 4, at 12:00 p.m. The preconference event is in honor of Adrianne Wadewitz, a scholar of 18th-century British literature who became one of the most prolific and influential editors of the online encyclopedia Wikipedia. Made possible by a Wikimedia Project and Event Grant from the Wikipedia Inspire Campaign, participants will work to increase the representation of women and women editors on Wikipedia. The Aphra Behn Society welcomes the Seton Hall community and all Wikipedians to participate in this free event.

The conference will formally begin on Thursday, November 5, at 7:00 a.m. with registration at The Grand Summit Hotel. Sessions will begin at the hotel at 8:00 a.m. with academics from around the world discussing numerous themes, including: Early Modern Women and the Senses, Transcultural Mediation, Women and the Eighteenth-Century Republic of Letters, and Difference and Consumption in the Global Eighteenth Century. The day will conclude at 6:00 p.m. at Seton Hall for a rare book discussion at the Archives and Special Collections Center in Walsh Library and a performance by the College of Communications and the Arts' theatre program of scenes from "The Way of the World."

Gevirtz thanked the many University sponsors for their contributions to the conference, including: the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Communication and the Arts, University Libraries, the Archives and Special Collections Center, the Women and Gender Studies Program and the English and History Departments. "We are bringing people to campus who get to see our resources, meet our students and faculty and see that Seton Hall is a world-class institution."

Seton Hall faculty who will be contributing to the conference include:

  • Kirsten Schultz, associate professor of History and co-organizer of the conference, as chair of the Women and Eighteenth-Century Transformations and Crises session
  • Karen Gevirtz, associate professor of English and co-director of the Women and Gender Studies Program, on "The Marquess of Bute's Broadside Collection at the Houghton, with special attention to comets" and chair of the session on Editing Aphra Behn for Cambridge University Press
  • Jonathan Farina, associate professor of English, as chair of the Mind and Body session
  • Mark Molesky, associate professor of History, on "Women and the Lisbon Earthquake of 1755"
  • Gabriella Romani, associate professor of Italian, as chair of the Women in the Eighteenth-Century Mediterranean session

Gevirtz added that undergraduate and graduate students have also assisted with the conference, gaining valuable academic and professional experience. "The students are gaining administrative and executive skills, working with different offices of the University, corresponding with scholars from across the country and around the world and hearing the latest scholarship and meeting both senior faculty and rising stars in different fields, including: History, literature, art history and music," she said. "They are resourceful, responsible and intelligent and are integral to the success of the conference." Student volunteers include: Erich Huhn, Jackie Joewono, Norah Hatch and Katherine Wolchko.

The conference will conclude on Friday, November 6, at The Grand Summit Hotel with thought-provoking sessions, such as: Digging in the Archives: New Ways with Old Writings, Feminist Interventions - Workshop on Using Wikipedia in the Classroom, and Women and Eighteenth-Century Transformations and Crises. The closing banquet will take place at 6:45 p.m. at the hotel.

For more information about the Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon please click here » or contact Laura Runge at This event is free and open to the Seton Hall community. Aphra Behn Society Conference details, including the registration form, fees and graduate student discounts, can be found at here or by contacting Karen Gevirtz at Note that there is no longer available seating at the luncheon or banquet.

The Aphra Behn Society is dedicated to encouraging and advancing research that focuses on issues of gender and/or women's role in the arts of early modern culture, circa 1660-1830. Through its newsletter, website, biennial meeting, and groundbreaking online scholarly journal, ABO, the Aphra Behn Society seeks to promote an exchange of information and ideas among members of the various disciplines engaged in related research.

Categories: Arts and Culture

For more information, please contact:

  • Karen Gevirtz
  • (973) 761-5151