2007 Call for Papers
For the 49th Annual Convention of the Midwest Modern Language Association
November 8-11, 2007 in Cleveland, Ohio
If you are interested in submitting a paper for one of these sessions, please contact the session organizer directly. The suggested deadline for submitting proposals to session organizers is April 16, 2007 although see descriptions below for exceptions. You may participate in no more than two sessions unless special permission is granted.
Individual paper proposals (250 words or less) on the general theme of the conference ("Revisiting Realisms") may be submitted directly to the M/MLA office by March 1, 2007, either through the mail or through email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Those accepted will be organized into sessions.
If you are interested in proposing a Special Session for the 2007 Convention, fill out this form by March 1 and submit it to the M/MLA office. The proposed special sessions will be listed below as we receive them.
Reports for the 2007 Permanent Sections and Associated Organizations should have been submitted already to the M/MLA office by the Section Chair or Secretary. These reports should include proposed session titles and descriptions for the 2007 conference, and we have included all received details below. If you are respondible for a Permanent Section or an Associated Organization and have not yet let us know your 2007 details, here are the Section Report Form and the Associated Organization Report Form.
African American Literature I: "Teaching Toni Morrison." This panel seeks papers that address pedagogical responses to Toni Morrison. Proposals should explore/discuss the following issues: Representations of black male masculinity, Sexuality, Whiteness, Class difference, Gender, Community, Canon formation (Where do we situate Morrison in the teaching of American and/or African-American literatures?). Melissa Daniels, Northwestern Univ., email@example.com
American Literature I: Literature to 1870: "The Politics of Recovery: 19th-Century African American Women Novelists." This panel will consider the politics and status of the recovery project as it applies to African American women writers. Over the last 10 years, several “new” writers and their novels have been recovered, notably Hannah Crafts’ The Bondwoman’s Narrative, and Julia Collins’ The Curse of Caste; or The Slave Bride. Beginning with Henry Louis Gates’s recovery of Harriet Wilson’s Our Nig, the same claim has been made: “the first novel by an African American woman.” What is the significance of making this claim? How has Gates’ almost overwhelming presence influenced and/or frustrated recovery? How do these novels complicate, challenge, revise our understanding of the history of the American novel, or of the challenges African American women writers faced before the Civil War? Rebecca R. Saulsbury, Florida Southern Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org.
American Literature II: Literature After 1870: "Remembering the Civil War." This panel seeks papers that examine representations of the Civil War in postbellum literature. How did male and female, white and African American, Southern and Northern writers remember and represent the war? How do war narratives, fiction, and poetry fit into the categories of romanticism, realism, and naturalism? Papers may explore issues of individual memory and collective memory, tensions between public and private discourses of memory, generational memory, memory in public culture (memorials, etc.), witness testimony, authenticity, truth, nostalgia, trauma, and mourning. Papers on later literary representations of the Civil War are also welcome. Please send a 200-word abstract along with a brief biographical sketch (as a Word attachment) to Whitney Womack Smith, Miami University, email@example.com, by April 15, 2007.
Applied Linguistics: "Language Teaching/Learning and Cultural Identity." Participants will explore the issue of cultural identity as it applies to the teaching and/or learning of a foreign/second language. Topics on language acquisition and/or Applied Linguistics in general are also welcome. Kashma Mulamba, Olivet Nazarene Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Art What Thou Eat": Food in Literature, Art, and Culture: Open Topic. Lynne Flora Margolies, Manchester Coll., email@example.com.
Bibliography and Textual Studies: "Transatlantic Studies and the Book." This panel seeks to investigate how material texts can contribute to ongoing discussions about the formation of nationalism and the transmission of culture. From the study of international copyright law to the altered interpretive possibilities of a reprint edition, transatlantic book studies can alter our understanding of political and cultural frameworks. Papers are welcomed from a variety of time periods that participate in discussions of books’ production, distribution, and/or reception across national borders. Preference will be given to papers that address issues of international relations and/or national identity. Jessica DeSpain, Univ. of Iowa, firstname.lastname@example.org
Canadian Literature: "The Canadian Nation(s)." Thomas King has called the border delimiting the boundaries of the Canadian nation “an imaginary line...a political line, that border line. It wasn’t there before the Europeans came. It was a line that was inscribed across the country after that.” This panel will explore how literatures written in and about Canada seek to define, question, or contest the idea of the Canadian nation(s), or engage with the notion of a Canadian literary canon. Papers on Quebecois, First Nations, and diasporic nationalisms in Canada are particularly encouraged. Please send 200-word proposals to Adele Holoch, Univ. of Iowa, email@example.com.
Children's Literature. "Suburbia in Children’s and Young Adult Literature." One of the features of contemporary social theory is its interest in the particulars of everyday life – the manner in which “ordinary people” go about the business of living. In a recent essay, historian Ben Highmore argues that everyday life provides “the training ground for conformity,” a concept has relevance for scholars of children’s and YA literature, given that most texts written in the genre are set in the suburbs – the epicenter of “everyday life.” The panel seeks to explore the uses that children's/YA literature authors make of suburban settings. Please send a 200-word abstract and a paragraph biographical sketch (as a word attachment) by March 15, 2007 to Gwen Tarbox, Western Michigan Univ., at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Comparative Literature. What did the recent ‘return to religion’ mean? Certainly not a return to belief, if we consider the proposals of Stanley Fish, Terry Eagleton and Mary Louise Pratt who called out this agenda. In fact, religion may be understood as the genre of the most ambitious theories, hypotheses which make unlimited interpretive claims. Looming behind the recent return to religion in literary studies is a more general return to big theories, thus nicely rounding off the periodic interest in global theories at the beginning and mid-twentieth century. Comparative literature, with its inclination always away from the parochial, but restrained by its devotion to linguistic competence, ought to play a central role.
René Girard’s hypothesis of Judeo-Christian writing is perhaps the most comprehensive model, but there are secular models as well. Said ambitiously proposed a comparative literature of imperialism in Culture and Imperialism (1993); Gayatri Spivak in Death of A Discipline (2004) called for an alliance with policy studies. This might lead us to engage such globalising area studies models as Huntington’s ‘clash of cultures’ thesis or Wallerstein’s world systems analysis. The responses of Appiah’s Cosmopolitamism (2006) and Sen’s Identity and Violence (2006) are pertinent, but Spivak’s special sense of urgency and disciplinary responsibility is salutary. Let’s get something done here.
I am asking for a salutary combination of responsibilities for twenty-minute papers: a big theory (secular or religious) explanation of what we need to do now in comparative literature, and an example (both theory and example necessarily brief). The emphasis may fall equally on both, or show partiality for theory or practice.
William A. Johnsen, Michigan State Univ., email@example.com
Creative Writing I: Poetry. Bob Watts, Lehigh Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org
Creative Writing II: Prose. Bob Watts, Lehigh Univ., email@example.com
Drama: "Displacing the Stage: What Makes Theatre?" This section welcomes essays on the Protean nature of theatre, the definition of theatre, theatrical events outside of the traditional theatre space, the use of history, current events, popular culture, and technology in plays both now and in the past, theatre and political activism, politics as theatre, theatre’s future, and theatre’s effects on “the real” world. Send 50-word abstracts to Ann C. Hall, halla@ohiodominican by April 16, 2007.
English I: English Literature Before 1800. This standing panel seeks papers on English literature and its intersections with science and medicine prior to 1800. In doing so it seeks to answer some of the following questions: In what ways do English authors configure their relation to medical and scientific texts of their time periods? How do popular medical and scientific issues enter English texts (either implicitly or explicitly) and how do authorial responses to these concerns change over different time periods and across different literary genres? Please send paper abstracts of no more than 200 words along with a brief biographical sketch to Katherine Kickel, Miami University, firstname.lastname@example.org, by April 15, 2007.
English II: English Literature 1800-1900: "Fragments in Nineteenth-Century British Literature." In 1813 a reviewer of Byron’s The Giaour, a Fragment of a Turkish Tale remarked that “The Taste for Fragments…has become very general, and the greater part of polite readers would no more think of sitting down to a whole epic than to a whole Ox.” Fragments were indeed widespread in the early nineteenth century: recently unearthed fragments of Greek sculpture were on display in the British Museum, most Romantic poets entitled works that were unfinished – or apparently complete – ‘a fragment,’ and even the Victorian novel was subjected to the fragmenting effects of the periodical press. Taking advantage of the term’s imprecision, this panel seeks to examine the usefulness and suggestiveness of this literary, aesthetic, archeological concept. Jeanne M. Britton, Univ. of Chicago, email@example.com.
English III: English Literature After 1900: "Contemporary Realism and Reality." James Wood’s label “hysterical realism” has generated the greatest debate, but in recent years a plethora of terms have been suggested to categorize contemporary British novels. These include dirty realism, postmodern realism, deep realism, spectacle realism, fiduciary realism, hyper-realism, and precocious realism, to name only a few. This panel seeks to examine how contemporary British novelists have sought to depict their realities since the 1980s. Prospective panelists can explore the following questions in their proposals or raise entirely new ones of their own: How have living writers engaged recent political and cultural developments with regard to classical conceptions of realism and mimesis (Lodge, Levine, Auerbach, etc.)? How has the oft-mentioned Dickens Revival proved constructive or limiting? Finally, how does contemporary realism signal a break with postmodern aesthetics? 200-250 word proposals to Gavin Keulks (at firstname.lastname@example.org) by April 16, 2007.
Film I. "Cinema and Photography." This session will examine films and filmmakers that focus predominantly on the image. Possible paper topics include: the aesthetic of color and black-and-white film; the use of filters;
attention shown to composition and lighting; the use of close-ups, panoramic shots, stills, jump-cuts, etc.; and precedence given to mood over story. Please send 200-word abstracts by April 15, 2007. Meaghan Emery, Univ. of Vermont, email@example.com.
Film II. "Coming Out to the Mainstream?: The Mainstreaming of New Queer Cinema in the 21st century." In the 1990’s “New Queer Cinema” was an emerging radical wave of fiercely political and aesthetic queer films which subverted the mainstream and challenged fixed or conventional depictions of gender and sexuality, such as Poison and Swoon. This panel will identify and examine mainstream films of the 21st century that continue the trend of New Queer Cinema and inform the ongoing debate of whether or not New Queer Cinema is dead. What resemblance to New Queer Cinema remains in current mainstream cinema? What effect has New Queer Cinema had on American cinema since 9/11? Is New Queer Cinema dead, transformed, or resurrected? Has a more sympathetic queer cinema and television diluted the political exigency of New Queer Cinema? Individual papers are encouraged to read a single mainstream film as informing the question of the state of New Queer Cinema or argue for or against the political urgency of GLBT issues present in 21st century mainstream cinema. Joanne Juett, Univ. of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, firstname.lastname@example.org
French I: "Paris dans tous ses états." Proposals on literary, cinematic, historical, or journalistic representations of the city of Paris throughout the ages, either as backdrop or as main “character,” are welcome. Questions presenters might consider include but are not limited to: How has the social geography of the city both reflected and shaped social mores and political projects at any given period? How has the Paris/province dichotomy changed over time? Where does post-war suburban Paris fit in this dichotomy? How often and in what ways has the city recreated itself to “cope” with the ebb and flow of French military, political, and cultural might? What, according to recent representations, are the most distinctive, surprising, delightful, or disturbing aspects of Paris in this third millennium? Please send proposals by April 15. Jennifer Willging, The Ohio State Univ., email@example.com.
French II: "Lunacy in literary and cinematic productions." This panel welcomes communications on the various representations of lunacy in literature and film. Questions and topics to consider: In what ways do the lunatics profess their madness? What is the function of insanity in the plot? How does lunacy become pertinent in the author’s or director’s work? How does it convey meaning? All genres and periods are welcome. Please send an abstract of 200-250 words by April 16 to Florian Vauléon, Department of French, The Ohio State Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
French III. "Monsters, Miscreants, and Misfits in French and Francophone Studies." French and francophone texts—literary, cinematic, even journalistic—abound with examples of nasty, unreliable narrators, vituperous characters and maligned authors. The latest example is, of course, Jonathan Littel’s Les Bienveillants, which recently garnered the coveted Prix Goncourt. This panel seeks to examine the roles of denigrated authors and characters more carefully. From Gaston Leroux’s Phantom of the Opera to Théophile Gautier’s vampires, from Marie de France’s werewolf to Baudelaire’s lesbians, from Sony Labou Tansi’s monsters to Maryse Condé’s madmen, what purposes are served by the panoply of misfits that we discover in French and Francophone texts? And why do we take such delight in them? Send 250 word abstracts to Eilene.Hoft-March@lawrence.edu or Judith.H.Sarnecki@lawrence.edu, Lawrence University, by March 15.
Gender Studies: Male. "Men and Marriage." This panel seeks theoretical treatments of the relationship between men and/or masculinities and marriage in literature, film, drama, television and popular culture from any historical period. We welcome papers that will complicate our understanding of this relationship and history. Topics might include domestic men, feminist or queer critiques of marriage, fictions of miscegenation or anti-miscegenation, as well as bachelors and marriage. Please send your 250-word abstract to Maglina Lubovich, University of St. Thomas, Department of English, email@example.com.
German Literature and Culture I. "Realities/Alternative Realities." We invite papers that explore what role “reality” plays in German literature, film, and/or music. How do authors incorporate realist components – such as historical material, social conditions, and the conflict between individual and society – into German texts? How do authors attempt either to represent reality or present alternative realities in their work? Isolde Mueller, St. Cloud State Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
German Literature and Culture II. "German Poetry, including translation." We welcome 20-minute papers on any period and all aspects of German-language poetry. Send 200-word abstracts (as e-mail attachments) to Geoff Howes, Bowling Green State Univ. (email@example.com) and Jeff Vahlbusch, Univ. of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 15 April 2007.
History of Critical Reception: "Media and Reception." This session will explore media interventions in readers’ reception of literature. How has mass communication—radio, print journalism, television—historically and more recently shaped meaning making? How do new media—electronic/post-digital communication—affect conditions for construction, reception, or rejection of texts? In what ways do readers use media to form interpretive or literacy communities across gender, age, education, culture, geography, among other boundaries? We welcome papers that examine virtual, textual, and cinematic audiences; the reception of e-books and blooks; the cultural translation of literature into film, performance art, or other genres; historical or current serialized fiction; the formation of book clubs and other reading communities as facilitated by electronic or other media; and other related topics. Send proposals to Melanie Brown, St. Norbert College, email@example.com.
Illustrated Texts. From the medieval illuminated manuscript to the postmodern graphic novel, text and image have enjoyed a close partnership. This session encourages papers exploring the multifaceted and complex means by which illustrations perform interpretive work in supporting, informing, challenging, or undermining textual claims. Alternatively, papers could interpret "illustrated text" broadly and consider the process of "reading” images, say, in medieval Books of Days, a cathedral's sculptural program, William Hogarth's series, cartoons or advertisements, video games, or the tattooed words comprising Shelley Jackson's Skin. Please send a 200-word abstract to Tammy Durant (firstname.lastname@example.org), Metropolitan State Univ., by April 16, 2007.
International Francophone Studies: "Francophone Identities." The term “Francophone” conveniently refers to French-speaking (and in this case French-writing) authors but glosses over the diversity and specifities which make up the literature writ-ten in French around the world. This panel turns its attention to the complexity of these Franco-phone identities, whether they are clearly established or in search of themselves, in order to dis-cuss the various cultural, political, literary, linguistic facets of the Francophone mosaic. Papers written in French or in English are welcome. Papers dealing with the conference theme of “re-considering realisms” in the area of International Francophone Studies will also be considered. Please, send proposals (200-250 words) by April 15, 2007 to Véronique Maisier, Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, email@example.com.
Irish Studies: "Now and in Times to Be: Future Ireland." Such a large portion of Irish literature is devoted to commemorating, interrogating, and stitching together the past—and tying it to present tense cognition. Eavan Boland writes, “…what we lost is here in this room,” and so it always seems: attention to history, tragedy, and lost culture are among Ireland’s most common literary concerns. Yet what of that which has yet to happen? This panel welcomes proposals for papers on a range of Irish writings concerning the future: speculative, apocalyptic, u- and dystopian. Papers might engage current trends in Irish writing and where they might lead. Alternately, they might look at past notions of future—images of Home Rule and a Republican Ireland, of “rough beasts” and the future-speech of Joyce’s med students, of Laputian science and comedic possibility. Tom Zelman, Coll. of St. Scholastica, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Italian: "Realism, Decadence, Symbolism: Definitions of Modernity at the Dawn of Italian Modernism." The session aims at clarifying the distinctions among the three terms Realism, Decadence, Symbolism, traditionally emplyed to describe late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Italian literature at least until the arrival of the avant-gardes and World War I. Papers are welcome on authors such as Verga, D’Annunzio, Pascoli, Fogazzaro, Pirandello and any other author of the period. Ernesto Livorni, email@example.com.
Linguistics. In this session, participants will address linguistic, socio-cultural, regional, global, and pedagogical aspects of language use, language teaching, and language learning in both L1 and L2 contexts. They will explore issues related to the rise of standard and nonstandard varieties as well as its implications for professional and academic communication in diverse national and international settings. Lilia Savova, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Literary Criticism. "Realism in Theory." This session will be devoted to assessing the state of the conversation about realism (small r) in contemporary literary theory and criticism. What are we saying about the modes, possibilities, problems, meanings, and politics of the literary representation of reality? What has been said about these things up until now? What might be said in the future? Samuel Cohen, Univ. of Missouri-Columbia, email@example.com
Luso-Brazilian. A topic and description are forthcoming for this session. Talía Guzmán-González, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Media Studies. "Realism Revised: Media Contexts for Realist Praxis." This panel seeks papers which explore the history, theory, and practice of “realism” in the context of its articulation in various media (print, visual, plastic, digital, etc.). In what ways do different media promote or delimit particular modes of realist representation or simulation? How do the formal or phenomenological characteristics of different media enable and/or critique the aesthetic, political, or philosophical claims of realism? How do they invite readers, observers, or other audiences to respond to or otherwise participate in their truth claims? Papers considering these or related issues in literary, journalistic, new media, or other texts from any period or tradition welcome. Send 1-2 page abstracts to Terence Brunk (email@example.com), Columbia College, by April 16, 2007.
Modern Literature. "The Long Weekend: Realist and Documentary Texts of Inter-War Britain." The dominant presentation of inter-war British literature can be indicated by the Longman Anthology's claim that “the quarter century from 1914 until the start of the war in 1939 is now conventionally known as the modernist period," and the readings included in the major literature anthologies are almost exclusively modernist. This focus ignores the immense popularity of crime fiction, the documentary impulse of Mass-Observation, film-makers (Humphrey Jennings) and photographers (Bill Brandt), and many significant non-modernist writers (among them, Somerset Maugham, E. M. Delafield, Graham Greene, Patrick Hamilton, and the golden-age crime writers). In the spirit of Robert Graves and Alan Hodge's The Long Week-End: A Social History of Britain 1918-1939, the Modern Literature section is seeking proposals for papers that address realist and documentary texts of the period, including "middlebrow" fiction, film & photography, crime fiction, and true crime narratives. Rosemary Johnsen, Governors State Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org
Multicultural Literature in the Classroom: Politics and Pedagogy: "The Politics of (Teaching) Multicultural Literature Post-9/11." This session is devoted to papers studying two aspects of multiculturalism in the classroom: The politics of/in multicultural literature (that is, the political content of the literature itself, as evidenced in its explication of unequal relationships of power, relationship of individual to state, colonial, post-colonial, imperialist histories and ideologies, and so on) and the politics of teaching multicultural literature (including identity politics—of race, gender, class, sexual orientation—of teacher and/or student, issues of curricular inclusion/exclusion, and so on). Special attention may be paid to any of the above in light of the post-9/11 period: In what ways has multiculturalism in the classroom become a harder, easier, or, at the least, a different enterprise for teachers and students? Alpana Sharma, Wright State Univ., email@example.com.
Native American Literature: "Story-Telling: Where, When, How, and Why." Story-telling for all peoples is necessary to establish and support cultural identity and cultural values. For Native Americans, story-telling has been a way to maintain culture and to survive the imposition of external cultural beliefs and values. Have the stories changed over time? If so, in what ways? Does their modernization continue to be a cultural support for traditional values? Does it shift the emphasis toward bi-culturalism or support the assimilative culture more than the traditional culture? Janet LaBrie, University of Wisconsin-Waukesha, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Old and Middle English Literature and Language: "Calling People Names." Proposals are invited for papers on names, naming, and forms of address in Old and Middle English and related literatures. Topics might include name etymologies and onomastic punning; self-identification and name-calling; avoidance of naming; protocols of address; change or hiding of a name; acrostics and signatures. We hope to bring together papers representing several linguistic and literary approaches. Please send abstracts of approximately 250 words by April 16, 2007, to Carin Ruff, Department of English, Cornell University, email@example.com.
Peace Literature and Pedagogy I. "Publishing Peace." From the print writings of George Fox and other early Quakers about the peace testimony and documents written by political figures like Martin Luther King, Jr., to the recorded words of Joan Baez and Bob Dylan and the cinematic work of documentarians like Michael Moore, peace literature has been--and continues to be--an emergent and adaptable mode, often taking on new shapes and forms to accommodate new varieties of conflict and to articulate visions of peace that change according to time, place, and ideology. This panel invites submissions that address the varied ways that literatures can and have disseminated ideals, theories, and practices of peace. We encourage papers that address this topic from a wide range of vantage points, especially insofar as they invite the consideration of continuities and change in a large historical model. Particularly welcome are papers that address intersections between issues of gender or globalization and literatures of peace, as are papers that isolate emergent modes of literature such as blogs. Emily Smith, Lawrence Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org and Martyn Smith, Lawrence Univ., email@example.com.
Peace and Pedagogy Panel II: "Banned Books in the Classroom." This year’s “Peace and Pedagogy” Panel will focus on censored literature, broadly defined, as a site of transgression, power, and social challenge. Teaching works that have been banned, as well as the issues surrounding them, can be fraught with difficulty for both teachers and students, particularly in an era of brittle attitudes about cultural and political difference. The aim of the panel is to consider the pedagogical implications of teaching and studying international works that have been censored and/or censured for political and social reasons are invited. Papers dealing with the following topics are invited: 1) specific cases of censorship and political repression, 2) banned or repressed works that are particularly “teachable,” 3) theoretical considerations regarding censorship and literature, 4) exemplary writing and reading assignments. Contact Lisette Gibson Díaz at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions and for more details.
Popular Culture. "Poetry & Popular Culture." For many people, the terms "popular" and "poetry" seem mutually exclusive and the term "popular poetry" oxymoronic - a non sequitur in which the commercial logic of the culture industries and the integrity of the lyric voice or aesthetic taste are impossibly paired. Yet the field of Cultural Studies now offers a set of rubrics by which we might talk productively about the intersection of poetry and popular culture. This panel seeks to showcase innovative scholarship at that intersection and thus invites papers reading and recovering the history of popular poetry, examining its creation and consumption, and exploring its various manifestations from periodical to pin-up, radio to rock and roll, and advertisement to autograph book. Send 300 word abstracts by 16 April to email@example.com.
Religion and Literature: "Spiritual Anarchists and Sacred Troublemakers: (Auto)Biographies of the Saints as Subversive Discourses." The lives of exemplary religious figures can exert a disruptive effect on accepted canons of religious literature. While accounts of the lives of saints and other religious virtuosi eventually play a central role in the lives of ordinary practitioners, these same exemplary figures often stand in opposition to authoritative religious and cultural institutions of their times. Attempts to bring these figures into the fold of orthodoxy typically involve an elision of the more seditious aspects of saintly lives. This session seeks papers that address the subversive elements that reside in the (auto)biographies of saintly personages. The organizers are particularly interested to address the topic from multiple religious traditions; papers addressing figures outside the Judeo-Christian tradition are especially, though not exclusively, invited. Please submit 250 word abstracts to W. David Hall, Centre Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org
Science and Fiction: "Un/natural Selection, Post/human Futures." This panel focuses upon the implications of scientific and economic paradigms for the study of literature and culture. Which principles from science or economics best account for artistic and political innovations? How is it that certain ideas, such as the free market, become “naturalized,” and how does this process impact the critiques launched by its opponents? How does the survival of the fittest, which is taken as a universal law within capitalism, affect the conduct of intellectual life in the academy? Is academic rigor ultimately Darwinian in being exclusionary? If nature is a constructed category, what are the laws or principles that constrain or govern the construction of nature, whether in the mapping of virtual worlds, the ecology of computer viruses, or genetic engineering? Peter Y. Paik, Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, email@example.com.
Science and Literature: "Medical Science and Literature." The Science and Literature section seeks papers on the topic of "medical science and literature." Particularly welcome are papers that address the conference theme of "reconsidering realisms." Papers may want to speak to the issue of how notions of the "real" are read through the medicalized body, the relation of the real body to the medicalized body, the comparison of real medical venues (such as clinics, hospitals, research) to their fictional counterparts, and so on. This list is not meant to be limiting. Any genre of literature, any media, any nation, any time period. Please send queries and abstracts to Elizabeth Klaver, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shakespeare and Shakespearean Criticism: "Shakespeare and Disability Studies." This panel invites papers that explore the intersections between Shakespeare Studies and Disability Studies. The goals of the panel are not only to broaden our understanding of Shakespeare's various representations of disability, but also to investigate the ways that Disability Studies can inform Shakespeare Studies more generally. Please send 250 word abstracts by April 15, 2007, to David Wood, Univ. of Wisconsin-La Crosse, email@example.com.
Short Story. "Revisiting Metafiction and Metanarrative." This panel seeks to re-examine the role of metafiction and metanarrative in the short story, with special emphasis on their relation to realism.
Metafictional devices are usually associated with anti-mimetic impulses that break the realistic illusion of the fictional world. In what ways have these techniques been used to expand the potentials of the short
story? How—if at all—can these narrative devices be seen to enhance the representational qualities of a work, instead of simply calling them into question? In recent articles both Monika Fludernik and Ansgar Nünning
insist on distinguishing between metafiction (the act of foregrounded the fictionality of a text) and metanarrative (a self-reflexive comment that does not undercut the mimetic illusion, emphasizing only the constructedness of the discourse). How can this distinction help in revising our understanding of the self-reflexive impulse in the short story? In disrupting the mimetic or aesthetic illusion, do the techniques of metanarrative and metanarration (each in its own way? differently?) affect only the story being told or also the discourse that gives voice to
this story? Is there a line to be drawn between the realistic effects of the levels of story and discourse? What is the relation of metanarrative and/or metafiction to parody? Are there ethical dimensions to these techniques? This panel will address these and other related questions. Please send 250 word abstracts by April 15, 2007 to Samuel Frederick, Cornell Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spanish I: Peninsular Literature Before 1700. "Open Topic." Yonsoo Kim, Purdue Univ., email@example.com.
Spanish II: Peninsular Literature After 1700. A topic and description is forthcoming. Malcolm Alan Compitello, Univ. of Arizona, firstname.lastname@example.org
Spanish III: Latin American Literature: "Open Topic." Esther Santana, Northeastern Illinois Univ., email@example.com.
Spanish IV: Literary Theory and Hispanic Criticism: "Putting Theory into Practice: Incorporating Theory and Criticism in the Spanish-Language Literature Classroom." Abstracts are invited for papers that treat such topics as designing a theory course for language students; teaching a specific narrative, dramatic, or poetic text or an entire literature course from a theoretical perspective; including criticism in literature classes; and teaching theoretical approaches from one’s research. Please submit an abstract (200 words) in the body of an e-mail message by April 16, 2007, to Gwen Stickney, Modern Languages, North Dakota State University, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spanish Cultural Studies: "Media and Modernity: Genealogies of Media and Technologies of Representation, 1800-2000." This panel seeks papers on any aspect of media interactions and media developments from the 19th to the 21st centuries in Spain, or with regard to Spain and its global contexts. Possible topics might include relations between old and new technologies, remediation, development of newspapers and print media, changing uses of communications media, film and other technologies of immediacy, relations between old and new visual technologies, photography, film and digital imaging, print graphics, etc. Send proposals with abstracts by April 16th, 2007 to: Rebecca Haidt, Associate Professor of Spanish, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Ohio State University, email@example.com.
Teaching Writing in College: "Debating the Power of Personal Voice." Students in composition courses often ask if they can use their personal voice in their writing...what do we answer? This panel will examine the pros and cons of letting our students use their personal voices in their papers, as well as sharing our theoretical ideas on how to teach students to use their personal voices. Caresse John, Northern Illinois Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
Travel Writing/Writing Travel: "Open Topic." “Travel Writing/Writing Travel” invites the broadest possible inquiry into the culture, discipline, and conventions of travel, from the earliest times to the present. Of particular interest is how writers “write” travel, and how convention (however unconsciously) shapes the experience for the travel writer and the armchair traveler following in his or her wake. Fresh perspectives on canonical travel works are just as welcome as explorations into the little known realms of travel literature. Also welcome are papers that discuss the study of travel in the classroom, and how to convey the motley texts, theories, and disciplines that reconstruct the cultural experience of travel. Zach Weir, Miami Univ. Ohio, email@example.com.
Women in Literature. This section is not accepting abstracts this year.
Women's Studies: "Women and the Visual Arts." The M/MLA Women’s Studies Panel invites submissions for the upcoming conference to be held in Cleveland in November 2007. We welcome papers from all fields that address gender and the visual arts including but not limited to painting, sculpture, photography, film, and the media. Contact Janis Breckenridge for additional information or to submit an abstract. Janis Breckenridge, Hiriam Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org.
Writing Across the Curriculum: "Assessment and Writing Across the Curriculum." In Reference Guide to Writing Across the Curriculum (Parlor Press LLC, 2005), Charles Bazeman addresses the two assessment issues that WAC programs raise and the unique circumstances of the WAC classroom: assessing student writing and assessing program success. This panel hopes to bring together a group of papers that address the sorts of issues that Bazeman – and many others – raise. Marianne Cotugno, Miami Univ., email@example.com.
Young Adult Literature. "Personal Pleasure(s): Exploring Individual Gratification and Satisfaction in Young Adult Literature." Pleasure plays an important part in the development of YAL literature though it is not often explored. Many personal pleasures, such as those with food, sexuality, shopping, and freedom, are often indicative of both problems explored in YAL literature and resolutions reached in regards to issues raised in YAL. Such pleasures are not always problematic or obsessive in nature but may rather offer positive solutions for solving and/or exploring development of individual identity. In this session, we will investigate issues of gender, identity development, dominance, class, and instruction and their relation to personal pleasure(s).
Papers might explore:
* Ways in which pleasure is defined and illustrated in YAL Literature
* How pleasure is sought out and explored in YAL
* The role pleasure plays in YAL texts
* The social and cultural consequences in seeking out or denying personal oneself personal pleasure(s)
* The way pleasure is created and/or limited due to gender
* Restrictions/Freedoms on pleasure due to religious ideologies
* Morality and pleasure in YAL
* Pleasure and Class limitations and/or freedoms in YAL
Please address questions or abstracts to Amberyl Malkovich at firstname.lastname@example.org or Illinois State University, Department of English, Campus Box 4240, Normal, IL 61790-4240. Abstracts should be no more than 500 words and must be submitted by May 1, 2007.
American Dialect Society: "Language Variation and Change in the United States." We welcome papers dealing with varieties of English and other languages spoken in the United States. Presentations may be based in traditional dialectology or in other areas of language variation and change, including sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, anthropological linguistics, folk linguistics, language and gender/sexuality, language attitudes, linguistics in the schools, critical discourse analysis or narratology. Susan Meredith Burt, Illinois State Univ., email@example.com
Asociación Internacional de Galdosistas. We have not yet received a description of this session.
Association for the Study of Literature and Environment. "Writing the Plains, Writing the Biome: Environmental Literature Across the 49th Parallel." Environmental writing on the Great Plains has undergone an explosion during the last fifteen years in both Canada and the United States; this plethora of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry represents a kind of literary renaissance emerging from one of North America’s most altered biomes. This session will examine the significance of Plains environmental writing to continental eco-literature, and address these questions: Is there an eco-criticism specific to the Plains biome? Can one heal the wounds of landscape alteration and cultural rupture? What role does Native American literature play in the emergence of Plains environmental literature? Why are the Plains now a productive center of creative nonfiction writing? Susan Naramore Maher, Univ. of Nebraska at Omaha, firstname.lastname@example.org
Conseil International d'Etudes Francophones. We have not yet received a description of this session.
The Harold Pinter Society. Papers on any aspect of Harold Pinter’s work are welcome. Especially encouraged are papers treating Pinter’s work in relation to the work of other playwrights or works of literature, art, or culture in genres other than drama. Please send 300-word abstracts to Craig N. Owens at email@example.com by April 15.
Henry James Society. "The Artful Traveler." Papers are invited on any aspect of Henry James and travel, travel writing, expatriation, exile, and the like. Feel free to interpret "travel" in the widest possible senses. Please send an abstract (200 words or so, as a Word attachment to an e-mail) by 10 April 2007 to Peter Rawlings, Univ. of the West of England, Bristol, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Medieval Association of the Midwest. The MAM is sponsoring two sessions this year: "The History of Reality and the Reality of History in the Middle Ages" and "Narrating the Real and the Sur-Real in Medieval Literature." Please send abstracts to Cynthia Valk, Convener of Conferences, The Medieval Association of the Midwest, email@example.com.
Society for Critical Exchange: "Image and the Imagination in the Visual and Verbal Arts." This working mini-conference aims to examine the image—broadly conceived as pictorial, textual, and digital representations—and its relations to the collective imagination. We invite papers that explore how images are adopted, adapted, and translated in a variety of media (textual, visual, or digital), across borders, and among cultures. We invite papers from all disciplines, including but not limited to art history, literature, the history of the book, anthropology, law, library and information sciences, and the cognitive sciences.Potential rubrics include:
- Literature: How can illustrations, cartoons, and photographs affect the way that literature is interpreted? How have comic books and graphic novels altered conceptions of literature or come to define themselves in the context of what is traditionally thought of as "the canon"? How do images figure in conceptions of generic boundaries? How does text/image interaction change when texts are serialized, collected into monograph form, or excerpted, especially when images are added or subtracted?
- Digital Environments: How has the availability of digital material changed researchers' interactions with archival material? What does the individual consumer look for in digital archives, whether of scholastic, scientific, or lay interest? How has the basic knowledge of professionals working in archives and libraries changed to incorporate new standards and practices for database design, interface design, and semantic markup? What analogies and differences between physical and digital architectures emerge when considering the representation of texts?
- The Visual Mass Media: How do images and texts interact to present coherent narratives of events in print, broadcast, or digital news? What attitudes desires, and/or ideologies do advertising images such as billboards, websites, posters, commercials, etc., codify? Approaches might include the visual rhetorical, semiotic, or iconological.
- Remediation: How has web design changed our understanding of the print page's determination of both the appearance and meaning of prose? What do current digital re-imaginings of literary texts indicate? What is involved in the translation of the word to the screen, whether cinematic or digital? How do movies that aren't adaptations of novels use text in their narrative techniques?
- Trans-cultural and Trans-temporal Images: Whether in the context of the modern pilgrimage, of cultural or leisure tourism, of anthropological or colonial exploration or other, how do travel images detail and propagate the "sacred," the "civilizational," the "exotic," the "primitive," or the "Other"? How do images produced by the mobile eye or self organize, narrate, and/or reconfigure the world? How do culturally- and historically-based approaches to adaptation theory change the way that we see adapted images?
Abstracts of no more than 500 words and a CV of no more than 2 pages to firstname.lastname@example.org by March 15. Submissions from graduate students are particularly encouraged.
Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature I: "Ohio in Literature." Marilyn J. Atlas, Ohio Univ., email@example.com.
Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature II: "Ohio in the Evolution of Midwestern Literature." David D. Anderson and Marilyn J. Atlas, Ohio Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women in French I: "Beauty, Aging, and Power: Women’s Coming of (a Certain) Age in French and Francophone Texts." With the stunning recent popularity of Socialist presidential candidate, Ségolène Royal, observers of French culture have been presented with an image of beauty, power, and—not to push the term too far—maturity. Do French and Francophone cultures always look so eagerly on women growing into powerful positions? Are age and beauty always incompatible terms? What’s the cultural status of the crone in any given text? What do French and Francophone cultures have to say about the sources of women’s power? We invite papers for this panel that will explore any combination of these terms and in a range of media (literary texts, films, the press, etc.). Send 250 word abstracts to Judith.H.Sarnecki@lawrence.edu or Eilene.Hoft-March@lawrence.edu by March 15.
Women in French II: "La représentation des femmes dans des textes français et/ou francophones du 19e siècle au présent : La femme en temps de crise, la femme inaugurant le changement." A notre époque où la présence des femmes candidates ou élues à de hautes fonctions socio-politiques inaugure des changements possibles dans divers pays du monde, cette session se penchera sur la représentation littéraire des femmes comme victimes révélatrices en temps de crise ou promotrices de changement, depuis le 19e siècle jusqu’au présent, sur les plans culturels, politiques et littéraires. Les exposés rédigés en français seront les bienvenus. Les travaux en anglais seront aussi pris en considération. Veuillez faire parvenir toute proposition (200-250 mots) avant le 15 avril 2007 à Hélène Brown à l’adresse électronique suivante : email@example.com.
Women's Caucus for the Modern Languages/Midwest I: "Women in Rock, Pop, Jazz and Rap. What You Know To Be Real: Women’s Music, Women’s Reality." Music made by women that originates in their experience of reality is common now but was once almost revolutionary. The very idea that women could publish their own expression, musical or otherwise, in the wider aesthetic marketplace seemed strange not too long ago. What happens when women’s reality breaks through the conventions of popular music, and what regard do these artists have for the conventions of “realism” as they sing their own reality? Successful proposals will address some aspect of the encounter between women’s music and women’s reality in light of the tension between romantic self-expression and social comment. Patricia S. Rudden, New York City College of Technology/CUNY, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women's Caucus for the Modern Languages/Midwest II: "Feminist Pedagogy: Gender Dynamics in the Virtual and Hybrid Classroom." The Women’s Caucus invites papers reflecting on the evolving relationship between feminist and technology-centered (or assisted) pedagogies. Questions to consider: How have the rapidly changing constructions of the virtual and hybrid classrooms (from labs, to blogs, to tablet pc’s) challenged our feminist pedagogies? And how have our evolving feminist pedagogies created changes in our technology-centered (or enhanced) instruction? Do our students experience a gender divide in the virtual classroom? Do we? Linda S. Coleman, Eastern Illinois Univ., email@example.com.
Women's Caucus for the Modern Languages/Midwest III: "Women’s Realist Fiction." The expression "The personal is political" was originally popularized by the radical feminist group Redstockings in the late 1960s and emphasized that women's personal issues--like responsibility for housework and childrearing, sexual assault by husbands or male partners, and limited access to health care, to name a few--are inherently political matters. This panel seeks to explore ways in which women's realist fiction of the late 20th century has built on and/or challenged the ideas embedded in the phrase "The personal is political" and the influence of this genre in the political arena. How has women's realist fiction taken up this theme, and how has it influenced women's activism and/or political attention to women's issues? Andrea Powell Jenkins, Ball State Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
PROPOSED SPECIAL SESSION TOPICS
(acceptance not yet determined)
Special Sessions will be posted below as we receive them through March 1, 2007.
"Altered States." Avital Ronell's study of addiction and literature, *Crack Wars*, called for an exploration of intersections among writing, dreaming, Being, and Derrida's neo-Platonic notion of the *pharmakon*. Such an exploration and intervention has yet to be completed. This panel seeks to establish a new dialogue that moves discussions of literature and altered states from the tendency to romanticize drug use, dreaming, fantasy, and the fetish, to a scene of new epistemologies and ethics that allow us to approach a concept of the Real. Quite different from *realism*, the articulation of the Real requires a particular imaginative perspective, and a particular relation between the subject, writing, and culture. This panel seeks to open a dialogue for the expression of this limit by way of papers that address dreaming, alchemy, drug use, fantasy, and fetishes in literature and culture. Papers that focus on Medieval and Early Modern literature and culture are especially desired, though all time periods and geographical regions are welcome and will be given equal consideration. Please send 500 word abstracts to Erin Labbie, email@example.com by April 15, 2007.
"Afro-Caribbean Identity: Space, Culture, and Literature." Research in this session will deal mainly with Afro-Caribbean literature, space, culture, and history. Papers can be read in English or Spanish, but they can have as a subject all islands in the Caribbean. Mamadou Badiane, University of Missouri-Columbia, firstname.lastname@example.org
"American Cultural Studies." Papers welcome on any aspect of American Cultural Studies from any time period in US history. Particularly relevant are papers that speak to the conference theme of “reconsidering realisms.” Papers may address material culture in the U.S. (automobiles, clothing, toys, etc.), popular culture (television, movies, music, fashion, etc.), media (journalism and the internet), and others. Papers may also investigate high culture through the lens of cultural studies. Please send abstracts and queries to Elizabeth Klaver, email@example.com.
"Approaches to Teaching Early African American Poetry (1700-1900)." This panel provides a forum to take a fresh look at themes and forms of early African American poetry (the influence of African oral traditions and cultural practice; the use of classical forms and allusions; racial realism; epic, allegoric, elegiac, and dialect poetry, etc.,) and to explore innovative ways to engage our students in poetry written by African Americans in the 18th and 19th centuries. Proposals for papers that discuss courses designed with a strong emphasis on classroom performance, collaborative student projects, or integration of computers and digital resources into course format are especially welcome. Papers should describe pedagogical goals of classroom praxis, discuss the integration of resources such as visual and audio media, e-texts, the Internet, etc., and include examples of in-class and/or on-line activities. Anne Herbert, Bradley Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"BAM! POW! ZAP! The Graphic Novel Meets Literature in the Gutter." Although the cartoon and, later, the comic book, are fairly well established forms, the graphic novel is a relatively recent development in comic book history. Some critics view Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer Prize for his influential work, Maus, as a clear indicator that the graphic novel has been officially dragged out of the comic book nerd’s dingy bedroom and into the light of critical acclaim in mainstream media and college classrooms. But what is a graphic novel, exactly? To develop and contribute to the emerging critical vocabulary surrounding this medium, we invite papers that explore the many formal facets that comprise it, including the intersections between image and text; graphic novel genres (autobiography, fantasy, superhero, etc); audience and reception; seriality and narrative strategies; narrative realism; formal hybridity. Angela Szczepaniak, Univ. at Buffalo, email@example.com
"Between Colonial Testimonies and Historical Narratives." This panel will consider testimonial discourse and historical narrative of Latin American Colonial writings. The intriguing confluence of testimonies and historical descriptions epitomizes literary manifestations of Latin American colonial period. The panel will explore diverse aspects of testimonies vs. historical narrations such as narrative self-fashioning, subversive subjectivity, inventing historicity, truth-claim through phenomenological experiences, self-constitution, “I” and “eye” of narrator, forging objectivity, manipulation of discursive times, rhetoric of abundance and amazement, silencing versus hyperbole, discursive gender identity/constitution, etc. The panel invites papers from any disciplinary and theoretical perspective—postmodern, subaltern, feminist, gender studies, transcultural, transatlantic, transpacific, inter/intra-colonial. Song No, Purdue Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Classroom Taboos: A Practical Exploration." This panel intends to explore the use of controversial material in the classroom. The nature of the university experience presents a distinctive set of challenges, including the appropriate integration of taboo language and concepts into the educational process. Students and teachers, alike, may find certain language inflammatory, but is it possible to respect cultural differences while retaining an atmosphere of free intellectual discourse in English studies? Adding further complexity to this issue are the instructor’s internal ethical concerns, pressures to conform to proscribed institutional policies, and rapidly shifting standards of propriety. We seek real-world strategies for confronting societal taboos in academia, rather than shying away from controversial materials due to our uncertainty about how best to approach these issues. Please submit abstracts (250 words) by April 16 to Jason M. Demeter, Univ. of Akron, email@example.com; or Julie F. Aronson, Univ. of Akron, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Collective Identity and Regional Autonomy in Contemporary Spanish Crime Fiction." The transition and consolidation of democracy are critical moments in Spain's history frequently addressed in contemporary Spanish crime fiction. In addition to these continuing themes, recent crime fiction evidences a renewed focus on Spain as a crossroads of cultures. Located at the crossroads of Western Europe and North Africa, Spain has always represented a confluence of Christian, Islamic and Jewish cultures. Historically the individual autonomous communities have exhibited diverse collective cultural identities which, today, are increasingly challenged as Spain experiences a wide range of social and political changes. This panel will explore the diversity of contemporary crime fiction from the various autónomas as it bears witness to radical transformations in Spanish society wrought by contemporary social issues particular to these regions. Renée Craig-Odders, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, email@example.com
"D.H. Lawrence: Gender, Sexuality and Popular Culture." Critical assessments of Lawrence’s representations of gender and sexuality have relied mainly on biographical approaches. Such assessments may emphasize an Oedipal complex, a fraught relationship with his wife Frieda, a need for male authority arising out of impotence, or a troubled relationship with a repressed homosexual nature. While these approaches are valid and should not be dismissed, they should be supplemented with cultural and historical approaches that contextualize Lawrence’s representations of gender and sexuality, identifying the various discourses that inform Lawrence’s work. Particularly needed are critical assessments of Lawrence’s relationship to popular culture. One contemporary critic has noted the connection between Lawrence’s late work and interwar erotic fiction and film, breaking new ground, but more needs to be done on situating Lawrence’s representations of gender and sexuality in the context of popular culture, broadly conceived. This panel aims to explore Lawrence’s work from such a perspective, bringing much needed historical and cultural approaches to Lawrentian studies. Mitchell R. Lewis, Elmira Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"The Death Penalty in 20th/21st-Century American Literature." What is the history of the death penalty in 20th/21st-c. American century literature? How might we characterize literary productions that examine, in brief or in full, the practice of state killing: as abolitionist, proletarian, sensationalist, documentary? In what contexts have writers and artists approached the death penalty, and what political, social, or educational impacts have their works had? Particularly welcome are papers focused on the literature of the 1930s, the history of lynching, prison writing, activist movements, documentary film, individual writers, women and prison, and performances. Katy Ryan, West Virginia Univ., email@example.com.
"Early Visual Media and European Literatures." This panel invites papers that explore the intersection of European literature and visual media—such as the camera obscura, phantasmagoria, panorama, diorama, and the kaleidoscope—before the advent of photography and cinema. We welcome papers including but not limited to the relationship between old and new technologies; virtual reality and illusionism; bourgeois entertainment; dilettantism and experimentation; interrogations of scholarly constructions of spectacle, attention, realism, and observation; cultural encounters; and competing regimes of visual consumption. Please submit an abstract (250 words) in the body of an e-mail message by April 15, 2007 to Vance Byrd, U. of Pennsylvania, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Fabricating the Body: Representations of the Body in Literature and Culture"
Panel One: American Literature and Culture
Panel Two: British Literature and Culture
From the religious to the spectacular, the medicalized to the transsexual, the body is made to signify in American and British literature and culture. Whether this signification occurs because of adornment, surgery, violence, death, tattooing, disease, age, gender, race, pregnancy, imprisonment, or some other physical, spatial, or cultural taxonomy, our double session at the 2007 Midwest MLA conference seeks to interrogate the many fabrications of bodies in American and British literature and culture.
Possible topics may include the following:
Dead body * Battered body * Medicalized body * Diseased or Ill body * Gendered or Sexed body
Scarred body * Tattooed body * Autopsied body * Adorned body * Disabled body * Dieting body
Sculpted body * Religious body * Monstrous body * Obese body * Raced body * Surgically altered
body * Pregnant body * Aging body * Impotent body * Docile body * Militarized body * Political body
* Colonized body * Transsexual body * Theatrical body * Cinematic body * Criminal body * and more!
For papers on American topics (any era), please submit your 250-word abstract to Cammie Sublette, Univ. of Arkansas – Fort Smith, email@example.com. For papers on British topics (any era), please submit your 250-word abstract to Beth Torgerson, Eastern Washington Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org. Abstracts due by March 31st. With abstracts, please include a short c.v. (one or two pages).
"Figurative Language in 19th Century American Literature." Proposals for this panel could address the unique usage of figurative language within 19th Century American Literature. How does the figurative create a sense of irony that is de Manian; how does the use of rhetorical language become persuasive in explaining what the figurative does? Papers could also, but is not limited to, include any aspect of figurative language and its presentation that is uniquely 19th Century American. Deeanna Rohr, SUNY at Albany, email@example.com
"French Masculinities." Although masculinity has increasingly become an object of study in the humanities, French studies has been slow to think through the implications of considering men as gendered beings. This is odd, in part, because many key studies of Anglo-American masculinities have roots in so-called French theory. This panel aims to think about key ways in which French literary and philsophical texts from the 18th-20st centuries represent and/or problematize masculinity. Topics might include: theoretical/philosophical masculinities; sexuality and masculinity; female masculinity; paternity; queer masculinity; cross-dressed masculinity; Bourdieu and masculinity; Derrida and masculinity; Foucault and masculinity; Deleuze and masculinity; Beur masculinities. Please send 250 word abstracts to Todd W. Reeser, Univ. of Pittsburgh, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"From Babbitt to Rabbit: Sports in American Literature." In an America saturated with professional and amateur sporting events, the utilization of sports as a cultural metaphor in literature has a long and storied history. Mark Twain, for instance, once declared that “baseball is the very symbol, the outward and visible struggle of the raging, tearing, booming nineteenth century.” This panel is interested in these types of intersections: from football in Fitzgerald to wrestling in John Irving, from golf as a refuge for misogynistic business practices to baseball as a key cultural symbol of coming integration in the 1940s. How have sports been employed as a valuable tool in American literature? 300 word abstracts to Joe Webb, Saint Louis Univ., by March 15, 2007 (email@example.com).
"Gender Studies and Women’s Realities." Papers are invited from any area of Gender Studies that examine women’s realities from any MLA field, European, American, Latin American, African, Asian, and so on. Feel free to interpret women’s realities liberally, for example, the realism of representing women in literature and film, women and gender in documentaries, historical women transformed into fictional characters, or even keeping it “real” in Gender Studies curricula. Please send an abstract or talk proposal (c. 200 wds) in an Email by 15 April 2007 to Margaretmary Daley, Case Western Reserve University, firstname.lastname@example.org and mention audio-visual needs.
"German Literature and Culture: Realism in Austrian Culture and Film." We invite papers that examine Realism in Austrian Literature and Film from any period. Send 200-word abstracts by April 15, 2007 (as e-mail attachments) to Joseph W. Moser, Washington & Jefferson College, email@example.com.
"German Women Writers." We welcome 20-minute papers on any period and all aspects of German-language literature by women. Send 200-word abstracts (as e-mail attachments) to Amy Strawser , Otterbein Coll., (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 15 April 2007.
"Graphic Novels." In his 1989 study Comic Books as History: The Narrative Art of Jack Jackson, Art Spiegelman, and Harvey Pekar, Joseph Witek broke new ground by arguing that the graphic novel, through its fusion of text and illustration, is uniquely situated to relate history. For this panel, I am soliciting proposals that either explore significant historical moments—Witek’s study focuses on such events as the Holocaust and Texas independence—or interpret “history” more liberally. Of particular interest are proposals dealing with comic books from/about the 1980s. Please submit 250-word abstracts by April 16 to Rick Iadonisi. By e-mail as a Microsoft Word attachment to email@example.com . By regular mail to Department of Writing/ Grand Valley State University/ Allendale, MI 49401. Rick Iadonisi, Grand Valley State Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"I Don’t Want Magic, I Want Realism: Representations of Reality in Gay Film." This session asks how GLBT films represent the everyday life of the community. Beyond the crises of AIDS, Coming Out and discrimination, individuals live their lives in the world of work, mortgages, family relationships, carpools and school. How does gay/lesbian film represent this side of experience, or does it/can it/should it? The session seeks to explore film genre and its possibilities and limitations in the 21st Century. Daniel MacLeay, Southeast Missouri State Univ., email@example.com.
"Imagining Motherhood in 19th-Century American Literature." Motherhood and child raising figure importantly in 19th-century American literature, especially in sentimental and reform writing. This panel seeks to contribute to the current conversation about domesticity, the status of women, the image of the child, etc, by examining the ways mothers have been portrayed. To what strategic use do authors put the figure of the mother? What does she emblematize? How does she serve as a narrative device? As a reform mechanism? Something else? Papers welcome on all aspects of motherhood in the 19th century. Debby Rosenthal, John Carroll Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org
"Introduction to Film: Which Movies and Why?" This is a panel for film scholars to share their practical approaches to teaching introduction to film; specifically, which films are the best teaching tools and why? Panelists should limit the number of films to three or four which illustrate their classroom pedagogy for expanding students’ concepts of film as literature and not just entertainment. At best case scenario, the panel will be largely a conversation between instructors interested in exchanging ideas about which films are the best teaching tools, classroom exercises, and / or overall pedagogical approaches to eras and genres. Papers are considered – but open-ended, prepared conversational approaches to presentations are also encouraged. Russell Brickey, Purdue Univ., email@example.com.
“Is She for Real? Women Writers and Science Fiction.” This is a call for papers for a proposed Special Session which will examine works on a broad range of topics related to women in science fiction. Such issues might be (but are not limited to) gender and identity; utopia/dystopia; sex and sexuality in sf fiction and/or film; cyberpunk; depiction of women in sf film; Second Wave feminism and New Wave sf; the writings of Octavia Butler, Ursula K. Le Guin, James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice B. Sheldon), Joanna Russ, Marge Piercy, and others; critical reception of feminist science fiction. Presenters should submit a 200-300 word abstract to Alayne Peterson, University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac, firstname.lastname@example.org no later than April 16, 2007.
"Is That A Bomb in His Purse?: Gender, Sexuality, and Ultraviolence Contemporary Irish Film." This session is interested in the relationships between gender, sexuality, and ultraviolence as depicted in contemporary Irish film. The goal of the panel is to gain a clearer understanding of the relationships between gender, sexuality, and violence—specifically in Ireland. Topics may include: stressed masculinity, homosexuality and transvestitism, feminine power, cultural identity constructs, Catholicism and violence, censorship, etc. Special interests: Patrick McCabe, Martin McDonagh, Peter Lennon, and Neil Jordan. 300 word abstracts to Matthew Schultz, email@example.com by March 15th.
“Languages of Architecture and the Architectonics of Language.” Jacques Derrida and Andrew Benjamin separately point out that architecture has long inhabited philosophy, at least as metaphor. Likewise, the twentieth century’s tenure as “The Age of Theory” has in one way or another taken its cue from de Saussure’s reconsideration of the architectonics of language. As a fundamentally non-mimetic endeavour, architecture has indeed played crucial, not always metaphorical, roles in modernist and postmodern articulations of aesthetic and social representation. With four papers, this panel will explore some of the connections between language and architecture: by way of early reservations about modernism and its architecture expressed by the likes of Georg Simmel and Siegfried Kracauer, perhaps, to speculation from Adorno, Derrida or Jameson, say, on the dialectic between architecture and other forms of cultural representation. Brian Macaskill, John Carroll Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Literary Realisms: Contemporary Historical Materialist Approaches." Throughout literary history historical materialist analytical approaches have been inextricably connected to discussions surrounding realism. In order to continue these discussions this panel intends to update traditional debates surrounding realism and modernism, produce new insights into the classic the debate between Brecht, Lukacs and Adorno surrounding realism, interrogate the role of realism in postmodern times, as well as the role of realism in global literature that increasingly describes an immaterial subject matter and what has come to be called “the hyperreal.” We invite papers from any strand of historical materialist hermeneutics. The panels of this special session intend to continue the lively dialogue sparked by past sessions of the Marxist Literary Group at the M/MLA convention. Mathias Nilges, Univ. of Illinois at Chicago, email@example.com.
"Literature of the Cinema: Fiction/Non-Fiction into Film." According to Frederic Jameson, the cinema is considered the most prodigious form of the art of intertextualization in the post modern era because films are readily accessible to all members of society and can be interpreted with an array of meanings. How do film adaptations fit into the scheme of intertextualization that Jameson describes? How do screen adaptations offer fresh approaches to cinematic art, literary theory, and cultural politics? This year’s panel will explore cinematic adaptations from fiction or non-fiction that speak to any of the following ideas/issues: addressing the current cultural climate, “Reconsidering Realisms,” (MMLA’s theme this year), reading the contemporary into the past, reading the past into the contemporary, and portraying the intersubjective “I.” Send abstracts by April 3 to: Micki Nyman, Saint Louis University, English Department, Humanities Bldg., 3800 Lindell, St. Louis, MO 63108, or firstname.lastname@example.org
"Memory and Trauma in Postcolonial Writing." The growing literature about memory and traumatic experience puts this topic at the intersection of psychoanalytic theory and literature. Among the most interesting scholarship currently, one notes Shoshona Felman and Dori Laub’s volume, Testimony: Crises of Witnessing Literature, Psychoanalysis and History; a collection of essays edited by Paul Antze and Michael Lambek, Tense Past: Cultural Essays in Trauma and Memory; and Cathy Carruth’s groundbreaking work in her volume Unclaimed Experience as well as the collection of essays that she edited, Trauma: Explorations in Memory.
Trauma as both metaphor and reality is an apt subject heading for discussion of postcolonial texts in a number of ways. While many of the victims of colonialism remain silenced -- either in death or through continued repression in the contemporary era --, the postcolonial writer assumes the voice of the traumatic victim. In her introduction to the volume of essays entitled Trauma, Caruth aduces the example of Tancred and Clorinda from Tasso’s Jerusalem Liberated to suggest that post-traumatic memory involves a kind of dual narrative. In Tasso’s text Tancred accidentally kills his beloved Clorinda, who is disguised, in a duel. Enraged, he lashes out with his sword in the forest, ‘wounding’ a tree from which blood spurts forth and the voice of Clorinda cries out, reproaching Tancred for his deed.
This incident illustrates the role of the writer as the ‘voice of the wound’: the testimony of the victim of trauma, unable to know directly the reality of what has occurred, is voiced by the writer, who can perform the act of narrative remembrance on the victim’s behalf. Kathleen Smith, Kalamazoo Coll., email@example.com.
"The Mezuzah and the Mestizaje: Jewish Latin America." We welcome papers on all aspects-- literature, art, music, film, history, and culture—of the Jewish contribution to Latin America. The topic is open: here are some suggestions: The Internationality of Latin American Jewish Literature; The Coming of Age of Latin American Jewish Literature; Biblical/Talmudic Themes in Latin American Jewish Literature; Literature and Art in Jewish Latin America; Latin American Jewish Women Writers; What’s Latin American and What’s Jewish? ; Latin American Jewish Writers as Minority Literature; Yiddish/Ladino Voices in Latin America. Lynne Flora Margolies, Manchester Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Mobilities: The Literary/Cinematic Text as Machine." This session will explore literary/cinematic texts from various socio-cultural backgrounds through the notion of mobility. How can literary/cinematic texts be said to move? How do they function as machines? How does this concept of movement invigorate literary analysis, and how might understanding texts through the notion of mobility open new paths of inquiry in cultural theory? Interdisciplinary approaches synthesizing geographical theory and philosophy are particularly welcome as are those that interrogate the works of Deleuze, Bergson, Virilio in relation to cultural texts. Those interested in presenting as part of the session should contact either Benjamin Fraser (email@example.com) or Steven Spalding (firstname.lastname@example.org), Christopher Newport Univ., ASAP.
"Narrative, Rhetoric, and Realistic (Re)Presentations of Identity in/of the Midwest." Narrative and rhetoric coming from a place are often influenced by the social, political, and cultural situations of the writer. Although issues of identity such as race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, dis/ability, are familiar to us, they are uniquely influenced by place. This panel will focus on the construction of the Midwest through writing, speaking, and listening. Each paper will show a unique connection to the representation place/people of the Midwestern U.S. as constructed through personal narrative, narrative, biography, or autobiography. Glenda Jones, Univ. of Illinois-Chicago, email@example.com.
"A New Angle of Ageism: Examining the Presence and Function of Children in Adult Literature." Ageism, as a critical approach, tends to focus on the aged and the discrimination that they face within American society. Despite its attempts to examine discrimination against individuals or groups because of age, adolescence and pre-pubescence have essentially been excluded from the discussion. This panel will address ageism as it applies to adolescence and pre-pubescence in adult literature. Special emphasis will be placed on the depiction of child characters in adult literature, the function of children within texts, and/or the process of "writing" and "reading" children in adult literature. Essays that examine the discrimination and oppression that adolescents and pre-pubescent children suffer within society and literature will also be presented. Laurie Cannady, Lock Haven Univ. of Pennsylvania, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"The Power of the Audience in Medieval Literature." This panel will examine the importance of readership and patronage to medieval English and Continental literature. Whether addressed directly by the author or reconstructed from manuscript evidence, the audience remains a significant element in understanding medieval texts. Papers may explore any aspect of audience and patronage in British and European literature in the Middle Ages, such as the dedicatory envoy, the author’s construction of readership within the text, or the historical audience of a literary text. We welcome a broad range of methodologies and critical perspectives, including (but not limited to) reception theory, textual studies, and gender studies. Please send 1-2 page abstracts by April 16 to Amy N. Vines, Univ. of North Carolina at Greensboro, email@example.com.
"'Real Indians': Popular Representations of Native Americans." Will the "real Indians" please stand up? This session explores how Native Americans were represented in popular culture during the 19th and early 20th centuries, particularly in public venues and mass-produced forms such as captivity narratives, chautauquas, dime novels, film, melodrama, newspapers, periodicals, and Wild West shows. Papers may consider the following questions: Why did "authentic" depictions of Native Americans capture the public's attention? How were "realistic" accounts in captivity narratives and newspapers designed to persuade readers to accept these representations of Native peoples as legitimate? How did non-Native as well as Native authors establish their credibility in order to assume an "authoritative" stance in portraying American Indians? Papers that draw on archival research are preferred. Submit abstracts by April 16 to Jen McGovern, Univ. of Iowa, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Realism and the Old Plantation." While “Realism” is the term used most often to describe U.S. literary production of the late 19th century, some of the period’s most popular texts embraced a vocabulary that hinted at their unreality. Called—and sometimes calling themselves—plantation romances, plantation legends, or simply works of plantation fiction, these texts sought both to idealize plantation life and to claim this ideality as historical fact. This session thus seeks papers that address “what really happened” on the old plantation. Papers might explore such issues as dialect and authenticity, the paradox of nostalgia as a form of truth-telling, and the critiques posed by writers, white and black, in response to romanticized images of the plantation in circulation throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. Send 300-word abstracts to Jeremy Wells (email@example.com) by March 31.
"'Realisms' in recent German post-wall cinema." The goal of this panel is to investigate the concept of ‘reality’ and ‘the Real’ in German post-wall films including also their reception and promotion. Papers are sought that include theory on cinematic realism and the real -- ranging from e.g. Kracauer, Bazin, and Deuleuze, to British theory on social realism (Colin McCabe, John Hill, Andrew Higson) to more recent discussions on Black representation (e.g. Mark Reid on the ‘ghetto aesthetic’ and Myrto Konstantarakos on ‘ethnocentric voyeurism’ in French beur cinema), and on realism and popular cinema (Julia Hallam and Margret Marshment). Topics sought include any of the following:
- Reality, the real and authenticity and the (mixing of) styles and genres.
*the marginal and/or ethnic subject.
*the local/the urban neighborhood/ghetto.
*autobiographical filmmaking and/or new auteurism.
- The place of the ‘new post-wall realism’ in the traditions of cinematic (social) realism.
- The notorious and uncritical use of the notion of ‘closeness to reality’ and ‘authenticity’ in reviews and promotion.
- Individual filmmakers and their influences and role models (e.g. Thomas Arslan and Bresson, Andreas Dresen and the GDR tradition).
- Socially aware filmmaking and the question of referentiality (i.e. the presence/absence of social, political, national references).
Please sent abstracts to Andrea Reimann, Knox Coll., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"The Realities of Location: Representations of Race and Place." This panel seeks papers that explore how US authors negotiated the intersection of race and place in the nineteenth century. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to, the following: the postbellum landscape, domestic space, imperial expansion, the work environment (both pre- and post-emancipation), slave experience, tourism, and movement between slavery and freedom. Please send abstracts of up to 250 words by April 10 to Eve Rosenbaum at email@example.com.
"Reflections on Animality in German Culture." From Dürer's animal sketches, the mimed animals of Renaissance Fastnachtspiele and the animal odes of anacreontic poets to Nietzsche's encounter with the blond beast and the brutality of Nazi war propaganda, German culture has brought the unknowable otherness of animal consciousness to light to elucidate the ways in which we use our projections of animals to "talk" about ourselves. Eschenbach's tales of monsters, Goethe's pursuit of the original Urtier, E.T.A. Hoffmann's animal sorceries, the Grimm Brothers' animal enchantments, Freud's interrogations of animals as gatekeepers to human consciousness, Franz Marc's Blue Riders, Kafka's bestial metamorphoses and the grotesque and fishy tales of Günter Grass and other contemporaries, all give unique testimony to the recurrent presence of animals and animality in the German cultural imagination. This session will explore such visual, literary and historical portrayals of the fluctuating boundary between humans and animals in Germany both before and since the decried end of Humanism. Please submit 300-word abstracts to Jennifer Ham (firstname.lastname@example.org) by April 15.
"Reification, Realism and the Contemporary American Novel." This panel is interested in the links between the contemporary American novel, the condition of reified consciousness and realism. Since the raison d’etre of reification is to obfuscate any sense of transcendence and totality, what is the strategy of the novel then in trying to break through this barrier of reified consciousness? Can a political art be envisioned without invoking totality as a moral norm? What does it even mean to envision a social phenomenon as a total? How might this crucial political task be aligned with “realism” which in Jameson’s words means “an active, curious, experimental, subversive-in a word, scientific-attitude towards social institutions and the material world”? Topics may include- novel and politics, totality, reification, realism as literary genre and critical practice, political art. Bimbisar Irom, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison, email@example.com.
"Renaissance Drama in Performance: Early Modern Realities, Modern Productions." This panel invites papers that explore modern stage and film enactments of early modern dramatic texts, both Shakespearean and non-Shakespearean. How do these productions broaden and/or limit our understandings of playtexts and their meanings? How do today's performances influence our perceptions of the realities governing the contexts in which early modern plays were first produced? We are particularly interested in papers that consider the potential convergences, conflicts, and complications that can result when presenting early modern political, social, and gender dynamics for modern audiences. Please submit abstracts (250 words) to Hillary Nunn, Univ. of Akron, firstname.lastname@example.org, by April 16.
"Rethinking the Lower Middle Class." Despite Rita Felski’s celebrated call to reconsider the lower middle class, literary and cultural critics have been slow to take up her challenge. This panel seeks to address nineteenth- and twentieth-century literary representations of the British lower middle class. Especially welcome are alternative genealogies of the lower middle class’s emergence, development, and relationship to other class formations; new theories of reading the lower middle class; considerations of lower-middle-class affect or habitus; analyses of the lower middle class’s role in suburban expansion, mass culture, empire, or literary/artistic movements; and the lower middle class’s relation to realist, naturalist, modernist, or postmodern modes of representation. Please send 200-300 word abstracts to Todd Kuchta, Western Michigan Univ., email@example.com.
"Revisiting Raymond Carver's Realisms: 21st Century Perspectives." In keeping with the general conference theme 'Reconsidering Realisms', we invite papers on new interpretations of Carver's realisms. Carver's work has been labeled, among terms, as neo-realist and dirty-realist, in addition to the ubiquitous minimalism associated with his canon. We encourage panelists to reconsider these terms from a 21st century perspective. In the nearly 20 years since Carver's death in 1988, literary labels that were in style during his lifetime have shook off some of their connotations of smallness of vision. Panelists are invited to be creative in their interpretations of 'realisms.' Instructions for submissions: please send a 200-word abstract by April 16, 2007 to firstname.lastname@example.org. Panelists whose abstracts are chosen must register for the conference by June 1, 2007. Panelists must also become members of the MMLA.
"Revisiting Subjectivity." The origin and nature of subjectivity is the topic of several rival discourses that seldom intersect. Many medievalists still associate the onset of subjectivity with the “long twelfth-century” renaissance in western Europe (the “Haskins thesis”). Other scholars, especially art historians, still trace its onset to the Renaissance (the “Burckhardt thesis”), while neohistorians and postmodernists attribute its onset to the Enlightenment and identify Descartes’s Discourse on Method (1637) as its seminal text (the “Foucault thesis”). Still others regard subjectivity as a universal human experience. They either reject the notion of “origins” or “onset” (Charles Darwin), or they qualify the problem as an inquiry into “literary” subjectivity (Michel Zink). This session will “mix and match” four papers that relate to one or more of these rival discourses about subjectivity. Earl R. Anderson, Cleveland State Univ., email@example.com.
"Speaking of Suffering: Trauma, Realism, Narrative." The impulse to document the ‘reality’ of traumatic events like the Holocaust, South African apartheid, or the AIDS crisis still persists, despite a growing body of scholarship that re-defines the act of witnessing in terms of a fundamental inability to bear witness. Writers continue to draw upon realist literary conventions in order to lend some shape to an experience that cannot be understood or represented through established artistic practices. This panel invites papers that explore the aesthetic, epistemological, and ethical questions surrounding the lingering obsession to bridge the un-navigable gulf between the everyday and the extreme. Topics might include but are not limited to the challenges posed by trauma studies to various conceptions of realism or the real (Auerbach, Jameson, Lacan); realism and anti-realism; the preservation or ‘passing on’ of traumatic stories; the narrativization of atrocity; the uses and abuses of the archive; the persistence or punishment of objects and bodies; or the recreation of events from significant generational, geographic, or linguistic removes. Please send abstracts of 300 words by April 15 to Drago Momcilovic, Dept. of English, University of Wisconsin (firstname.lastname@example.org).
"The Sublime in the Modern World: Too Much, Too Late, or Too Soon?" The Sublime experience has a long anxiety of influence in the Western Tradition. Now, in both the modernist and postmodern traditions, scholars have associated the Sublime with nihilism, Cold War paranoia, the computer, television, and even Micky Mouse. But the question remains – is the Sublime viable in the postmodern world? If Disneyland is indeed Sublime, can the Sublime be anything but parody and failure? Can our technocracy be Sublime as it speeds global warming, or is that extent of power the definition of Sublime? Where do we stand in relationship to this ancient literary ethos? Russell Brickey, Purdue Univ., email@example.com.
"Teaching Film and Literature Together." Whether teaching a “film and literature” course or simply pairing a novel with its film adaptation in a literature course, many instructors find themselves teaching film and literature together. This panel seeks submissions that explore the complexities of teaching film and literature together. Topics might include specific topics or pairings that worked well or didn’t work well in the classroom, syllabus approaches to film and literature courses, approaches to specific genres, etc. What are the difficulties, possibilities, and/or joys to teaching word and image? Laura L. Beadling, Univ. of Wisconsin - Platteville, firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Theory and Practice in the Composition Classroom." While it is a commonplace within Composition Studies that theory informs practice and practice informs theory, the connections between composition theory and classroom practice are not always so clear within the composition classroom. Because most schools have no more than a few rhetoric and composition specialists, and because those specialists often find themselves working as administrators, much of the actual teaching of undergraduate composition courses is left to faculty (both tenure-track and adjunct) and graduate students trained as literature specialists. Because of this, composition pedagogy is often informed by textbooks rather than by an understanding of composition theory. This session seeks to explore the intersection, or lack thereof, between rhetoric and composition theory and classroom practice. Gina M. Merys, Creighton Univ., GinaMerys@creighton.edu, and John Paul Walter, St. Louis Univ., email@example.com.
"Toni Morrison and Third World Cosmology." The panel will explore manifestations of “third world cosmology” in Toni Morrison’s novels, working with the following remark by Morrison from her 1984 essay "Memory, Creation, and Writing:" “ In the third world cosmology as I perceive it, reality is not already constituted by my literary predecessors in Western culture. If my work is to confront a reality unlike that received reality of the West, it must centralize and animate information discredited by the West –discredited not because it is not true or useful or even of some racial value, but because it is information held by discredited people, information dismissed as ‘lore’ or ‘gossip’ or ‘magic’ or ‘sentiment.’” Chris Roark, John Carroll Univ., firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Trauma and the American Revolution: Representing Rupture." This panel will examine literary representations of the American Revolution from the point of view of trauma and historical rupture. What is the significance of those representations, which imagine the revolutionary era in terms of absence, ambiguity, loss, and the crisis of identity? One of our most famous tales involving the revolution, Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle,” for example, figures the war as a central and productive absence in the text. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Legends of the Province House contemplates the implications of the war in terms that often evoke the reader’s sympathy for those who under go what might be called a symbolic death as pre-revolutionary identities collapse. We welcome essays that approach this question from a variety of methodologies, including historical, theoretical, and philosophical. Sean J. Kelly, Univ. at Buffalo, SUNY Buffalo, email@example.com.
"Victorian Aestheticism/Realism." This panel is interested in papers that consider the relationship between aestheticism and realism in 19th-C British literature,art, and culture. Especially welcome are interdisciplinary and expansive considerations of aestheticism and realism. Topics may include but are not limited to: definitions of authenticity in the arts (broadly defined); the relationship among morality, beauty, and representation; modes of realist representation in visual, literary, and performing arts; aesthetic legacies/ revisions; Decadence and its relationship to realism; the impact of individual aesthetic perspectives (i.e. Arnold, Ruskin, Pater, Eliot, Wilde) over various forms of representation; specific strategies/texts/authors/artists that complicate Victorian aestheticism and/or realism; the influence of gender and/or class on aestheticism/realism. 1-2 page abstracts with brief cvs attached as word documents to Megan Early Alter, Univ. of Iowa, firstname.lastname@example.org, by March 5.