Claudio Magris' 1999 work, Utopia e disincanto, begins with his observation that the present moment pleasures in apocalyptic pessimism. This pessimism is tied to the death of the myth of the Revolution, confirmed by the fall of communism. If there is a question of irrelevance, it is that of utopias. Current conversations in literary theory deal with finding definitive criteria for "dystopias" or "counter-utopias," ideas which are very much in vogue in the science fiction genre. Apocalyptic narratives, or post-apocalyptic narratives, have been invading bookstores as well as movie screens – as seen most recently with Lars von Trier's latest film, Melancholia. One could say that this is symptomatic of the state of contemporary art.
Popular Indian cinema has witnessed a steady rise in the production of movies related to terrorism and threat to national security since 2001. While critically and aesthetically examining the perpetual threats that India lives under, these movies have successfully captured the jingoistic fervor and pride that have repeatedly trumped such adversity. In addition, Bollywood's focus has interestingly shifted from cross-border terrorism to the global terrorism revolving around America and her allies, their insurgencies in the Middle East and the subsequent tremors felt everywhere, especially by Indian expatriates.
Celebrating the bicentennial anniversary of the publication of the Brothers Grimm's Kinder- und Hausmarchen, the question we can ask is why their stories still have a great impact on the imagination of contemporary children and adults around the world. Older and recent folk and fairy tale research has raised awareness about the universal and multi-dimensional role of this collection in its historical and political context as well as its uses today, in shaping contemporary cultural representations and identities.
Rethinking Eighteenth-Century Aesthetics
Hemlow Prize in Burney Studies
The Burney Society invites submissions for the Hemlow Prize in Burney Studies, named in honour of the late Joyce Hemlow, Greenshields Professor of English at McGill University, whose biography of Frances Burney and edition of her journals and letters are among the foundational works of eighteenth-century literary scholarship.
Book Reviews: The Pennsylvania Literary Journal is looking for academics with tenure-track appointments to write book reviews of recent titles that have been released in their field of interest. Several academic publishers, including Harvard UP, Pearson, Random House, Penguin, Cambridge UP, Duke UP, and SUNY, have agreed to send free books to writers in exchange for the reviews. Unlike with other journals - it is up to you to find the book you want to read and that is helpful for your current research and to send a specific request to PLJ that will be forwarded to the publisher (if the author is qualified to write about the topic).
Call for Papers: Ecozon@ Issue 4.1 (Spring 2013)
Guest Editor: Peter Mortensen, Aarhus University
CFP: Essay Collection Titled:
Masks of Threat: Understanding new South Asian Identities in Motion
In contemporary narrative and cultural representations, how has the figure of the South Asian subject morphed gradually into a site of threat—racially, economically, politically, and socio-culturally? In violent enactments of identity and difference over the past few decades of history, how has dominant economic centers of the world reimagined the South Asian subject in migration? How has this understanding complicated the model minority status quos and how has it rerouted discourses of belonging and unbelonging?
That the American West is a highly classed and politicized space is no critical revelation. Scholars such as Stephen Tatum, Reginald Dyck, and Renny Chistopher have drawn attention to the complex interface of class, labor, space, and place in the context of the region's tumultuous cultural and literary history. In light of this history and the conference's primary theme "Western Crossroads: Literature, Social Justice, Environment," this panel seeks to uncover the intersections made at the junction of class, labor, politics, social justice, and the environment in the West. We are accepting presentation abstracts of 250 words for consideration. Possible subtopics include but are not limited to:
The South Central College English Association panel is focusing on how we teach textual adaptations. How might we incorporate various adaptations of texts into our classrooms? Papers discussing pedagogical methods as well as specific challenges and successes in teaching/integrating textual adaptations (both in print and film) are encouraged. We especially welcome graduate students' papers.
Please e-mail abstracts (250 to 500 words) to Amy K. King at akking at olemiss.edu before Friday, 20 April 2012.
Richard Marsh: Re-Reading the Fin de Siècle
A one-day symposium at the University of Brighton, Friday 20thJuly 2012
Postgraduate Conference - Deadline Extended
University of Portsmouth, June 14 2012
The 7th Annual University of Tulsa English Graduate Student Conference, October 4-6, 2012
Ephemerality, Mutability, and Marginality:
Print Alteration and Literary Culture
Although much recent criticism in modernist studies has focused on the everyday and the ordinary, this panel proposes instead to look at the precarious. The term precarity has been heard more and more frequently in the disciplines of political philosophy, economics, anthropology, and critical theory, but it has only begun to make its way into literary studies. Current discussions of precarity are shaped by the work of Paulo Virno, who describes it as "the chronic instability of forms of life," and by Judith Butler, who conceives of precarity as a shared vulnerability on the basis of which we might found a tentative community.
Disability and the Renaissance
Leeds Trinity University College, 8 September 2012