"Serializing the U.S. South" (SSSL Affiliated Panel)

deadline for submissions: 
May 25, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Society for the Study of Southern Literature

"Serializing the U.S. South" (SSSL Affiliated Panel)
South Atlantic MLA
Birmingham, AL / Nov. 2-4  We see, read, and hear stories about the region increasingly in serialized modes. Television is hardly new, but the rapid expansion of so-called prestige television has been followed by work from literary critics. Critical attention to the Souths of the small screen has been coupled with the emergence and expansion of venues pioneered for the even smaller screens. Global companies like Netflix and Amazon are now associated with prestige television. Perhaps most notably, the smallest of screens deliver serialized stories through podcasts. S-Town has received attention from across literary and cultural studies, and the podcast genre itself is rapidly becoming a medium for critics to disseminate their work beyond the academy urgently and rapidly. Comics, a longstanding serial form, have become attractive to public intellectuals most well known for their activism outside of serialized comics (Ta-Nehisi Coates & Roxane Gay [Black Panther] and John Lewis [March]). Even with forms that might seem to exist in contradistinction to serial storytelling—the novel and the movie—we have seen some of their most popular stories be those that are told serially. This panel seeks to address questions related to the many cultural productions using serial storytelling to describe, document, interrogate, and critique the U.S. South, broadly defined. Possible topics include: 

  • Nineteenth century print culture; the oldness of serial storytelling and the U.S. South
  • Serial modes and narrative structures, attachments, and modes of storytelling in and about the U.S. South
  • Serial modes and critical engagement with various reading, viewing, and listening publics
  • Serial storytelling and activism
  • The narrative temporality of serial storytelling
  • The intersections of digital and serial storytelling
  • Critical engagements with specific texts that address any of the topics above or others
  • Serial modes and pedagogy

 Other topics related to these lines of inquiry are welcomed. By May 25, please submit a 250-word abstract, brief bio, and A/V requests to Matthew Dischinger, Georgia Institute of Technology, at matthew.dischinger@lmc.gatech.edu.