Igniting the Canon: (De)Constructing What Makes Reading ‘Great’ in the Classroom and Beyond

deadline for submissions: 
January 31, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Pennsylvania College English Association
contact email: 

The 2019 Pennsylvania College English Association's Annual Conference


Bloomsburg University

Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania

Thursday, May 23-Friday, May 24, 2019





The Pennsylvania College English Association invites proposals for its 2019 annual conference on the theme of canonical literature, creative writing, and pedagogy.

​“Great books help you understand, and they help you feel understood.”

–John Green

Conference Call for Papers

The 2019 PCEA conference will focus on the ways in which literature, rhetoric, digital platforms, and creative expression evolve over time and invite us to read a variety of texts in an increasingly diverse world. Specifically, our CFP this year is informed by our host institution’s collaboration with its local PBS station on The Great American Read, an eight-part series that explores and celebrates the power of reading. It investigates how and why writers create their fictional worlds, how we as readers are affected by these stories, and what these 100 different books have to say about our diverse nation and our shared human experience. The series is designed to get the country reading and passionately talking about books.


Our conference this year therefore seeks to participate in this larger conversation. What do we mean when we talk about ‘great’ texts? How can we navigate the notion of ‘greatness’ while maintaining divisions between canonical and non-canonical texts? How do canonical texts function to perpetuate social norms (about race, class, and gender), while silencing marginalized voices? Conversely, how can marginalized writers re-appropriate canonical works for subversive purposes?


In addition, we invite submissions from faculty, graduate students, and independent scholars from all areas of English studies-- literature, film, composition, professional writing, pedagogy, creative writing, linguistics, popular culture, criticism, and others. We also welcome the reading of original creative writing. Proposals from undergraduate students will be considered when sponsored by a faculty member who co-presents or chairs a presentation panel.

FOLLOW THIS LINK TO SUBMIT A PROPOSAL: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1ea1sEewJgnbm3Ft4N7oJoHUZWD5Ug2DFA-kuXhQ1mik/