April is a good month for Tolkien conferences in the U.S.
In a few days, the 16th annual Tolkien in Vermont conference will take place at the University of Vermont in Burlington. This year’s theme is Tolkien and Horror, and the keynote speaker is Dr. Yvette Kisor from Ramapo College, who will be talking about “The horror of the unnarrated: Implications for Tolkien’s reader.”
This is always a small and friendly conference, and this year there’s an extra treat for participants – a private, advance screening of the Tolkien biopic directed by Dome Karukoski.
In addition to Dr. Kisor’s keynote address and the after-movie discussions, there will be sessions on:
- Nature, Madness, and Humor
- The Perils of Faerie
- UVM Undergraduate Voices
- Horror of Words
- Horrors of Modernity
- On the Borders of Horror
You can find the full schedule of speakers and titles for Friday, April 5 to Saturday, April 6 here.
A couple of weeks later, the Popular Culture Association conference will be held in Washington, DC from April 17 to April 20. In contrast to the Vermont meeting, this is a massive event with many different subject areas. The Tolkien sessions, though, organized by Dr. Robin Reid, take place Thursday, April 18 to Friday, April 19 and focus on the following topics:
- Adaptations of Tolkien’s Legendarium
- Enchantment, Healing, and Despair in The Lord of the Rings
- Multidisciplinary Tolkien Studies
- Landscapes in Lee, Tolkien, and Hemingway
- Digital Humanities and Tolkien Praxis Roundtable
- Digital Humanities and Tolkien Theory Roundtable
- The Future of Tolkien Studies Roundtable
The full list of speakers and titles can be found on the PCA Tolkien Studies area page.
To keep up with news from the Tolkien group at PCA, you can check out their public Facebook page by searching for “Tolkien Studies at Popular Culture/ American Culture Association.”