This edited collection will contain critical, interdisciplinary essays addressing the complexity of multicultural identity-making, politics and practices in relation to transnational and transracial adoption. Our collection aims to undo the image of a 'monolithic' Western adoption experience by exploring the particularities and commonalities of diverse adoptive countries, cultures, and contexts. We encourage essays that focus on adoption issues in places with highly contested to under-explored approaches to multiculturalism—including Europe, the Americas and the Pacific.
3rd Annual Black Doctoral Network Conference
Theme: Paying It Forward: Transforming Research into Practice
October 8 - 10, 2015
Invitation for paper proposals for a possible special session panel at the 2016 MLA Conference in Austin, TX, Jan. 7 - Jan. 10
Award-winning Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has just been nominated for a Grammy. Yes, a music award. A sample from her Ted Talk "We Should All Be Feminists" is featured in Beyoncé's hit song "Flawless." Adichie's nomination, a first for a Nigerian writer, is an exciting demonstration of contemporary intersections of the literature of the African Diaspora and other arts. Adichie first gave her talk to a live audience, it later "went viral" on the video sharing platform Youtube (where Beyoncé accessed the work so inspirational to her developing feminist identification), it was initially published via Kindle, and is forthcoming as a paperback.
It is assumed that in today's mass media, "free speech" is everywhere. We have access to an endless stream of images, words, thoughts and ideas on a daily basis. However, these opinions and pieces of news are filtered through official media outlets (trained journalists, career academics) or independently available through social media, without the benefit—or the detriment, perhaps—of professional vetting, thus raising questions about how "free" our access to information actually is. This means that the framing of news stories is all too often problematic, as a single event may be portrayed in irreconcilable ways by ideologically-motivated purveyors of information.
Originating from old Latin se- ("apart") and cernere ("sift"), "secret" means "hidden, concealed, and private," thereby signifying the distinction between the true and the false, the light and the dark, the self and the other, and the private and the public. This definition has its history and origin, and yet it is questioned and challenged nowadays by post-modernism and post-structuralism, as when Derrida considers in "Literature in Secret," "Pardon for keeping the secret, and the secret of a secret . . . of not meaning at all." If the secret one keeps is a secret "of not meaning at all," unveiling the secret simply reveals its nothingness. And yet, without the endeavor to unveil the secret, how can one know that there is nothing behind it?
This conference aims to investigate ways in which comics explore the idea of "future." Its goal is to gather scholars from the field of comic studies and related fields, such as linguistics, philosophy, literary studies, cultural studies, sociology, anthropology, film studies as well as others that can discover a conceptual connection to the rigorous study of comics. Given our broad and yet specific purpose, we aim to discuss work on comics originating from all major traditions: French bande desineé, American and British comics, Italian fumetti, Japanese manga, and so on.
Young Adult Literature
Session Coordinator: Dr. Amberyl Malkovich
Dept. of English, Concord University
"Through Opposition and Commonality: The Role and Depiction of the Arts and Sciences in Young Adult Literature"
With an increasing interest for a globalized and diverse society, the quest for an authentic self is more readily apparent and therefore further conflates the problem of representation. Globalization expands beyond social media and encroaches on the realms of the public and private spheres. However, the process of authenticity only further stabilizes potentially harmful ideologies that promote illusions of truth. In some instances, language (literature), film, and art, because of their figurative element, expose the artificiality of representation and engage the issue of authenticity. How are certain claims to truth (authenticity/referentiality) formulated, regulated, and destabilized through representation in literature, film, and art?
We are inviting proposals for a possible special session that asks how African-American writers and artists—from the end of the U.S. Civil war through the end of World War I—revised, re-mixed, and rejected popular images of Blackness in their struggle to shape alternative modes of seeing and being seen.
Indeed, the ubiquity of visual images representing Black people and Black life that followed the rise of mechanically reproducible visual technologies—from the lithographic print to the stereographic view—created a contesting set of visual archives that both reified and rejected the types of denigrating images made popular on the minstrel stage and in the uneven visual representations of the anti-slavery movement.