UPDATE: [Graduate] Play:Towards a Critical Concept; Deadline extended to February 15th

full name / name of organization: 
Annie Moore
contact email: 

Call for papers: Deadline extended to February 15th, 2008.

The graduate students of the Department of Comparative Literature at the
University of California, Irvine invite submissions for its annual
conference, "Play: Towards a Critical Concept."

Keynote speakers:

Alan Bass is an analyst and a member of the Graduate Faculty at New
School University. He is the author of Interpretation and difference:
the strangeness of care (2006) as well as Difference and disavowal: the
trauma of Eros (2000). He has also translated four books by Jacques
Derrida, including Writing and Difference (1978) and Margins of
Philosophy (1982).

Daniel Tiffany is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the
University of Southern California. He is the author of Radio Corpse:
Imagism and the Cryptaesthetic of Ezra Pound (1995), Toy Medium:
Materialism and Modern Lyric (2000), and Puppet Wardrobe (2006).

April 4-5, 2008


Because play is found undecideably split between the boundary of
seriousness and unseriousness, it thus remains for us an ambiguous
concept. It is often associated with frivolity, waste, and childishness,
and in this way becomes a dismissed or marginalized concept. At the same
time, however, it has also been intimately connected with creativity,
diplomacy, and the sacred. We ask to what extent play can become a
critical point of engagement in the fields of critical theory, literary
studies, philosophy, anthropology, sociology, psychology, and rhetoric.
In what ways can play intersect, intervene, and inform the critique of
politics, culture, and society?

Possible topics include but are not limited to:
• commodification of play (uses and abuses of free time)
• play of the signifier
• child's play
• play as resistance
• leisure (leisure time, social activity)
• institutionalized play (professional sports, war games and training,
• games (board games, social games, head games, games of chance, games of
the everyday)
• play and simulation (representation, legitimation, ritual, magic)
• serious play
• play and the body
• foreplay
• power plays from (coup d'etat to corporate takeover)
• play as fantasy and imagination
• play and politics/diplomacy
• play of boundaries
• rules and laws
• language games (translation, play between languages)
• animal play
• play and survival
• the history of play
• the philosophy of play
• ecology of games
• mapping play
• play as socialization (object relations, psychic and material processes)
• toys, dolls, automata

The deadline for the submission of 250-word abstract is February 15, 2008.
Presentations are to be 20 minutes in length. Send proposals to
playatuci_at_gmail.com. Please include your name, email address, institution
and phone number with the abstract.

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Received on Wed Jan 23 2008 - 12:55:36 EST