MLA 2020 - WIF Guaranteed Session: The Human Body and Gendered Technology in the French and Francophone Traditions
2020 MLA Annual Convention
Seattle, 9-12 January 2020
Women in French Guaranteed Session
The Human Body and Gendered Technology in the French and Francophone Traditions
The Oxford Dictionary defines the word “body” as “the whole physical structure of a human being.” How then, do we approach an understanding of the collective social body and humanity as such, if not by turning back to this physical structure, and investigating what makes humans human? In a world in which smart technologies are about to surpass their own creators in expertise, whose acceptation may be addressed in terms of what humans project onto AI, to what extent is smart technology gendered? How is technology “embodied” in discrete ways, for instance, through Alexa, Siri or Cortana’s voices, or through robots’ bodies? This session aims to explore works (film, literature, comics) in the French and Francophone traditions that have put gendered technology and women’s bodies into the foreground, highlighting the role that gender plays in the relationship between humanity and technology. It also plans to discuss how different bodies interact in distinct ways with their environment, while establishing various relationships based, not only on their historical and geographical background but also on the way they physically perceive and relate to the world around them. This call is open to contributions that in any way deal with corporeality, casting light on the intersections between the body and new technologies, in the light of issues of race, gender, sexuality, and disability.
Please send a 250-word abstract in English or French to Viviana Pezzullo, firstname.lastname@example.org by March 12, 2019, along with presenter’s academic affiliation, contact information, and A/V requirements.