G.E. Lessing Distinguished Professor of History and Poetics, Rutgers University
Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 5:30 p.m.
Pembroke Hall 305
Queer Conscience, Straight State in WWI Britain
Koven's talk focuses on one famously public-spirited gentry family, the Hobhouses, and the conscience of one man, Stephen Hobhouse, during WWI. Koven analyzes how, why and with what consequences Stephen Hobhouse’s mother, Margaret Potter Hobhouse, single-handedly orchestrated the war’s most successful campaign waged to save her oldest son Stephen, from a martyr’s death as an absolutist pacifist prisoner of conscience in 1917. Stephen's story reveals when and why the wartime state "queered" conscience and recasts the post-war disenfranchisement of conscientious objectors as an attempt to keep the state straight.
Koven's lecture supports our yearlong research seminar on "The Cultures of Pacifism."
Sponsored by the Pembroke Center and the C.V. Starr Foundation Lectureship
Free and open to the public
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