CFP: Exceptional Dicks: The Ethics and Ethos of American Tough Guys (9/15/07; NEMLA, 4/10/08-4/13/08)

full name / name of organization: 
Tim Bryant
contact email: 

Call for Papers

39th Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 10-13, 2008
Buffalo, New York

Exceptional Dicks: The Ethics and Ethos of American Tough Guys

Incomparable knowledge, deviant morality, and privileged violence are
aspects of American exceptionalism commonly found in genre fiction.
The violent idealism of Hammett and Chandler's hard-boiled detectives
defines standards of normative morality and moments of cultural crisis
in American cities. The Western outlaw and similar American
anti-heroes figure the ethical margin and marginal ethics of the
nation and nation-building at the borders of civilized space. The
fiction of American exceptionalism depicts violence upon bodies, as
they are made present or absent in cities, the American frontier, and
other spaces of contested representation.

This panel interrogates the literary depictions and social dimensions
of American exceptionalism, specifically as it constitutes the grounds
of literary genre conventions, hierarchies of legitimate and
illegitimate identities, and the logics of nation formation. Papers
are welcome on popular depictions of the exceptional American-- such
as the hardboiled detective, frontier hero, and any similar figures of
superior knowledge, morality, or violence-- in fiction, film,
television, comics, or other media. Papers should engage issues of
genre, identity (ethnicity, race, class, gender, sexuality), or
cultural significance.

Please send 250-300 word abstract in the text of an email message to:
Tim Bryant, University at Buffalo English Department
<>. Please include with your abstract: your
name; affiliation; email address; postal address; telephone number;
and A/V requirements (if any).

The deadline for submissions is Sep. 15, 2007. The complete Call for
Papers for the 2008 Convention will be posted in June:

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Received on Thu May 17 2007 - 15:28:29 EDT