ACLA 2020 The World vs. The Global

deadline for submissions: 
September 23, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Sara Marzioli; Germán Campos-Muñoz
contact email: 

Can we theorize World Literature as an intellectual and creative practice of resistance against the cultural imperialism embodied by the idea of the Global, the celebration of what Graham Hubbard calls the “postcolonial exotic,” and the hegemony of the English language? Is there a degree of antagonism between World Literature and the Global--or between the notions of translation and lingua franca? In what ways have these various terms been conflated or exchanged, and what do these conceptual entanglements tell us about the stakes and methodology of World Literature as a theory, a field of inquiry, and an institution?

This panel invites papers that explore how the varied relationships between theoretical conceptualizations of the world and the globe can be used to intervene in a range of current literary and cultural debates--from the state of the discipline to the economic climate affecting the humanities in higher education, climate change, the circulation of people through the politics of migration and borders, literary circulation, and the privileges and predicaments of translation, among others.

Furthermore, by approaching the “Global” as both a foil and mirror of the World, the elusive character of the latter term discloses its polyvalence--as phenomenological category for international literary studies, as historical admonition and reminder of the circumstances of a given text, as fundamental nexus between action and discourse, etc. We thus seek to propitiate a conversation which, from multiple perspectives, helps us shed light on the worldly and worlded circulation of texts in their historical, political, and socio-economic dimensions.

Some issues to consider:

    • The tensions, coincidences, and concomitances between the World and the Globe 
    • The roles of translation and lingua franca in the theorization of World Literature
    • Global canons and anthologies of World Literature
    • World Literature, the global village, and the glocal market
    • ​Poetics of movement and settlement: diasporas, migrations, and displacements
    • The politicization of World Literature
    • World Literature vs. the Anglophone
    • World Literature and the specter of the Postcolonial
    • The teaching of World Literature in the age of international nationalisms
    • Littérature mondiale, littérature-monde, and Weltliteratur

For information contact either Sara Marzioli smarzioli@gmail.com or Germán Campos-Muñoz at germancamposm@gmail.com. For consideration you need to submit directly to the ACLA web site https://www.acla.org/seminars