African American Literature Section, MMLA 2019, 11/14-11/17 in Chicago
In The Souls of Black Folk (1903), W. E. B. Du Bois famously conceptualized doubleness as the condition of black life in America, asserting: “It is a peculiar sensation, this double-consciousness, this sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity. One ever feels his two-ness,—an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.” African American literature has often thematically foregrounded double-consciousness, in addition to representing doubles, doppelgängers, and other forms of duality.
Inspired by the 2019 MMLA conference theme (https://www.luc.edu/mmla/convention/callforpapers/), this permanent section invites papers and creative presentations on doubleness, broadly construed, in African American literature. Potential topics may include:
- Double-consciousness in African American literature
- African American literary texts as doubles, e.g., re-visions of prior texts
- Doubling and intersectionality in African American literature
- Doppelgängers in African American literary texts
- Racial passing as a type of doubling in African American literature
- Formal duality in African American literary texts
- Methods of teaching doubleness in African American literature
Please email a file including your presentation title, an abstract of no more than 250 words, and a brief bio (of up to 250 words) to Dr. Almas Khan at firstname.lastname@example.org by April 5, 2019.