CFP: “Let me entertain you!”

Ephemera 38 Conference
Greenwich, Connecticut
March 16, 2018
Stichtag: 01.07.2017

Ephemera 38 Conference

Entertainment comes in many forms and is as varied as the people who enjoy being entertained. It has evolved over time as ideas of what we find „entertaining“ have evolved. The Roman theater, Punch & Judy puppets, traveling minstrels and dancing bears may have entertained in the past. Today, we may spend our leisure time at the movies, the ballet, a rock concert, the symphony, the circus or a monster truck rally.

Entertainment is the theme for the March 16, 2018 Ephemera Society of America (ESA) Conference, in Greenwich, Connecticut. The conference will focus on the wealth of ephemera – broadsides, posters, invitations, tickets, handbills, programs, menus, advertisements, etc.- generated to publicize, document and comment on the entertainment world. Each speaker will cover a topic in this field and use ephemera to visually illustrate his or her specialty.

For the 2011 ESA Conference, a similar theme yielded presentations on 19th century paper theaters, P.T. Barnum, Magic Lanterns, Magic, early theater playbills, the Parker Carnival shows and the pleasures of London, such as the Great Exhibition. With this year’s conference, it is our hope to expand the topic to other eras and entertainment forms. This is a field rich in imagery and we look forward to a visual feast.

We invite you to submit ideas for presentations. Each presentation will be 30 – 40 minutes in length, followed by a brief Q&A. Please submit the following: Presentation title and abstract, focusing on the way ephemera tells the story of your chosen form of entertainment. Include the types of ephemera you will use to illustrate your topic. Proposals should not exceed 150 words; 3-4 images to publicize your presentation; One paragraph bio including affiliations, and a jpg photograph to use for publicity purposes; Mailing address, phone number, and e-mail address. The Ephemera Society is eager to expand the use of ephemera in the classroom, and we encourage papers addressing the use of ephemera to support research and student involvement.

Proposals must be submitted by July 1, 2017 to Barbara Loe, Ephemera 38 Conference Chair, by e-mail at or by post to Barbara Loe, Ephemera Society of America, Inc., P.O. Box 95, Cazenovia, NY 13035-0095. Decisions and notification about proposals will be made by October. If selected, the final presentation must be submitted by February 15, 2018 in Powerpoint. We regret that at this time, funding is not available from ESA to support travel or presentation costs.

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