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CFP: Citizen of the World: The Use and Abuse of Thomas Paine c.1809-2009

Submission deadline: June 14, 2013

Conference date(s):
November 29, 2013 - November 30, 2013

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Conference Venue:

Department of History, Politics and Philosophy, Manchester Metropolitan University
Manchester, United Kingdom

Topic areas


The bicentennial of the death of Thomas Paine in 2009 saw new attention directed towards Paine’s life and times, but his legacy has still not received the attention it deserves. Vilified by Theodore Roosevelt as a ‘filthy little atheist’, yet adopted by Ronald Reagan in his campaign to make America ‘great again’, Paine’s life and legacy have been both celebrated and dismissed by generations of politicians and presidents. An Englishman by birth, a Frenchman by decree and a citizen of the world, Paine has also been invoked, discussed and appropriated by many others, in many walks of life, across the world. This conference seeks to examine the afterlife of Paine and the ways in which he has been used and abused in the two hundred years since his death. The conference aims to be interdisciplinary and international in approach, and we invite individual papers and panel proposals from established academics, early-career researches, postgraduates, public historians, and museums and heritage professionals.

Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following issues:

  •  Paine in biography 
  •  Paine’s political legacy on the Left and Right
  •  Paine in memory and commemoration
  •  Paine in public history, heritage and education
  •  Paine as world citizen
  •  Paine beyond America, Britain and France
  •  Paine, religion and ‘free-thought’

Papers should be 20 minutes in length, and the deadline for proposals is 14th June 2013. Please send a 200 word abstract of your paper, together with a one-page CV, to Sam Edwards at or to Marcus Morris at Successful papers/proposals will be informed by 1st July.

The conference will be hosted by Manchester Metropolitan University at the People’s History Museum in Manchester on Thursday 28th to Saturday 30th November 2013.

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