The Thomas Hardy Society Invites Presentation Proposals

Call for Papers

The Trumpet-Major

A Thomas Hardy Society Study Day in association with the University of Exeter

Saturday, 4 April 2020 at 10.00am

The Corn Exchange, Dorchester



Professor Mary Rimmer (University of New Brunswick)

Jerry Bird (Folklore Society, Dorset Natural History and Archaeological Society)

Andrew North (Military Historian) and Mark North (Dorset County Museum)

And a performance by the New Hardy Players


2020 will mark the 150th anniversary of the publication of The Trumpet-Major. Hardy classed it as one of his 'Romances and Fantasies', and it was much more warmly received by his contemporaries than its predecessor The Return of the Native. It has been described as a humorous, picturesque, romantic tale based on historical fact, one of a number of works Hardy wrote revolving around the Napoleonic Wars, including The Dynasts and a number of short stories. Containing passages of both hilarity and poignancy, it records the interruption into rural routine of a military presence readying itself for battle with Bonaparte, and how this impacts upon the lives of the Lovedays, the Garlands and the Derrimans.

The Thomas Hardy Society warmly invites proposals for twenty-minute presentations on any aspect of The Trumpet-Major which may include, but are not limited to:

* Female subjectivity and martial masculinity

* Napoleonic military history

* Male familial expectations

* Hardy as historian

* Pathos and bathos

* Xenophobia and patriotism

To support attendance at this day which has been designed to appeal to academics and general enthusiasts alike, the Society will once again be offering two bursaries of £50 each to students who would otherwise find travel or accommodation costs prohibitive. Please send proposals of not more than 350 words, and no later than 28 February 2020, along with a brief description, if you are a student, of how a bursary would benefit your studies, to Dr Tracy Hayes at



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