That reading and literacy rates are falling is no news: regardless of medium, we seem to be reading less and less, and doing so less well, whether in terms of comprehension, retention, or critical thinking. What potential does detective fiction hold to reverse this trend and even enable literacy, however defined, to survive and thrive in our digital era and beyond? The very traits of the genre that cause some to hold it in disdain, still, may hold the promise of rescuing reading and literacy. Firstly, the very disregard with which the genre is still treated by some, despite growing scholarship on same, allows it to be interrogated more easily; thus, critical and readerly standards can be exposed and challenged more easily.
twentieth century and beyond
Transnational Maghrebi Writings: Francophone Diasporas (NeMLA 2020, 5-8 March)
The Philip Roth Society invites submissions for a seminar entitled “Philip Roth’s Succès de Scandale.” While the subject of “literature and scandal” seems to be an emerging trend within studies of European literature, relatively few academic works focus on American literature and scandal. Thus, this panel seeks to examine how Philip Roth, both the subject of scandal and one of its keenest interrogators, can shed new light on this conversation.
“Post-Political Critique and Literary Studies”
Call for Papers for ACLA 2020 Seminar (Chicago, 19-22 March 2020)
This seminar seeks papers that reflect on the analytical bridges that might exist between post- political theory and literary studies. The main question the seminar aims to answer is the following: Decades after everything was declared to be political, what are the affordances, triumphs, and pitfalls of a post-political theory of literature?
Call for papers for Comparative Drama Conference, April 2-4, 2020, Orlando, Florida
"Musicality in Contemporary Women Playwrights’ Dramaturgy”
Call for Papers: Black Comedy in Contemporary Theater
Panel at the Comparative Drama Conference, Rollins College, Orlando, Florida: April 2-4, 2020
Deadline: October 31, 2019
Black comedy, as a genre, is under-theorized. Black comedy received scholarly attention fifty years ago with the advent of such literary humorists as Kurt Vonnegut or Joseph Heller. Interest has resurged in the twenty-first century in response to idiosyncratic cinematography of Quentin Tarantino or the Cohen Brothers, and in order to address the mordant satire of alternative media post-9/11.
NeMLA 2020: Boston, MA
In his 1961 essay “The New Lost Generation,” James Baldwin argues that Europe gave the “new” African American expats of the late 1940s and the 1950s “the sanction, if one can accept it, to become oneself. No artist can survive without this acceptance. But rare indeed is the American artist who achieved this without first becoming a wanderer, and then, upon his return to his own country, the loneliest and most blackly distrusted of men.” Indeed, Baldwin asserts that African American expats in Paris gained a kind of liberation through their experience with a culture wholly unlike their own.
What does it mean to tell the truth? Are we obligated to inform, or reveal with specificity? What approaches do creative writers apply in disclosing the personal? Does experimentation hide or reveal the truth? Our creative essays and poetry engage with inherent obstacles of truth in life writing. Following a reading of our essays and poetry, we will invite conversation on the ways in which experimental literary forms test the boundaries of truth-telling and subjectivity, and complicate the defining and teaching of genres.
We welcome papers on any aspect of Shaw studies, including but not limited to:
comparative treatment of plays by Shaw,
Shaw and his contemporary playwrights,
cultural aspects of Shaw’s works, and
international Shaw play productions.
Following the success of previous ACLA seminars, “The Story of Memory: Remembering, Forgetting, and Unreliable Narrators” and “The Story of Remembrance: The Future of Memory and Memories of the Future” in 2018 & 2019, this seminar invites paper proposals to discuss the relationship between memory and photography and its representation in literature and film.