Deadline Extended! Environmental Remediation: Genre, Visibility, and Ecological Crisis in African Literatures (Panel CFP)

deadline for submissions: 
February 12, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Katherine Hummel / African Literature Association
contact email: 

Remediation has emerged as a keyword in both new media studies and sustainability discourses. While Bolter and Grusin define it in terms of repurposing old media in new forms, Leerom Medovoi traces its ethically promising, yet politically empty rhetoric for environmentalism. Further, Medovoi asserts these dual definitions of remediation converge in Global South ecologies, many of which remain marginalized by mainstream coverage of environmental crises due to their non-spectacular exposure to what Rob Nixon terms “slow violence.” Whereas Medovoi studies ongoing pollution in the Niger Delta, this panel pursues the formal and environmental definitions of remediation as they emerge in African literatures and intersect with new/multi-media more broadly. What cultural politics inform how certain environments are selected for restoration, and which vulnerable environments are subsequently ignored? Which narrative and rhetorical strategies are adopted and/or repurposed to draw media attention toward African environments? How do African writers, artists, and activists engage with the politics of visibility, in deciding who gets to see, and who controls what is seen? How might remediation elicit new ethical and political imperatives for representing African environmental crises on a global scale?

Please send a 250-word abstract and brief bio to Katherine Hummel (hummel@umich.edu) by February 12, 2018. This is a proposed panel for the African Literature Association conference. 

The 44th Annual African Literature Association conference takes place May 23-26 in Washington, D.C. For more information on the conference, please visit https://conference.africanlit.org/cfp-2018