CFP: Art Objects and Women's Words: Women's Ekphrastic Writing (12/15/06; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Jill Ehnenn
contact email: 

CFP: Art Objects and Women's Words: Women's Ekphrastic Writing
(12/15/06; collection)

Call For Papers for a collection of scholarly essays:


A major university press has expressed serious interest in an edited
collection of scholarly essays that explore how female authors produce
verbal representations of visual representations. Publication is
projected for 2008.

Language. Gaze. Space. Time. These concepts invariably come to mind in
academic considerations of ekphrasis, as do difference, desire,
otherness, mimesis, muteness, blindness, power, perception, narrative,
fragment, (re)production, consumption, and commodity. Notably, these
concepts are also inextricably linked to the gendered particularities of
the historical moment(s) that produced the author/spectator, the
represented subject and its ekphrastic mirror. Nevertheless, while
literary critics of the past few decades have observed that ekphrasis
engages various gendered dynamics, still, scholarship tends to focus
solely upon texts (and the function of gender within texts) authored by

What might characterize ekphrastic texts by women? Ekphrasis that is
feminist and/or queer? What considerations--formal, historical,
material, phenomenological, and philosophical--would be involved in
conceiving of such projects? For instance, if temporality and spatiality
are both to be considered in relation to ekphrastic writing, what
happens when we consider gendered spaces--or how the sex/gender system
affects the signification of particular bodies, objects or iconographies
in space, over time? What happens, as Judith Halberstam and Lee Edelman
have each recently considered, when we eschew "reproductive futurism"
and reflect upon the possibilities and implications of queer time? How
are accounts of the varied desires and pleasures associated with verbal
and visual arts inflected by positing a female reader/spectator? How are
ekphrastic texts considered through the lenses of gender and sexuality
different from other kinds of literary appropriations and revisions?

In light of and in addition to the above questions, potential topics
might include:

Feminist, anti-feminist, queer ekphrasis
Narrative transvestism, linguistic mastery
"Fine" and "domestic" arts
Ekphrastic texts other than poetry, or vs. ekphrastic poetry
Beauty, ugliness, disgust
Silence, violence, envoicing
Landscapes, interiors, museums, academies
Spectators, connoisseurs, professionals, amateurs
Referents, re-visions; the model, role models
Satire, irony, style
Performance, performativity, citationality, disidentification
Production, consumption, reception
Desires, pleasures, perversions, subversions

Essays on authors, texts, and/or theories related to women's ekphrastic
writing from any time period will be considered, including
interdisciplinary and cross-period approaches. General inquiries welcome
in advance of the deadline.

Please send completed papers and a brief bio to
no later than December 15, 2006. Submissions should be made by email
attachment in Word format. Contributions should follow MLA style, using
endnotes rather than footnotes.

Jill R. Ehnenn
Department of English
Appalachian State University
Boone, NC 28608
(828) 262-2334

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Received on Mon Oct 09 2006 - 11:49:24 EDT