CFP: [Professional] 39th ANNUAL College English Association National Conference March 27-29, 2008 St. Louis, Missouri

full name / name of organization: 
Jeradline Kraver

Call for Papers for the 39th ANNUAL College English Association National
Conference March 27-29, 2008 St. Louis, Missouri

Conference Theme: PASSAGES
Special Topic: Teacher Education and Pedagogy
Deadline for Submissions: November 1, 2007
Special Topic Contact Person: Jeri Kraver, University of Northern
Colorado (
Web Site:

NOTE: CEA prefers to receive all submissions (including those for special
topic panels) electronically through our conference management database
housed at the following web address:

Please join the collegial community of the College English Association in
St. Loo this Spring. Below, read more about our THEME for this year's
conference as well as our GENERAL PROGRAM.


The clean, elegant lines of the St. Louis Gateway Arch rise high above
the Mississippi River , a literal representation of the city's most
famous epithet, “Gateway to the West.” Inspired by this image, CEA pays
tribute to St. Louis and to the many pioneers who passed through its
threshold, risking the world they knew for nothing more (or less) than
the promise of a new beginning.

Our theme for the 2008 conference is Passages. We invite you to consider
the following broad topics about PASSAGES from the perspective of TEACHER
EDUCATION AND PEDAGOGY for our special topics panel of the same name. Or,
if you prefer, you may submit a proposal for a more General Topic (see

1) Rites of Passage : Jung and Campbell point to the wide variety of
myths and cultural practices that equate maturity with the successful
completion of a rite of passage. Freud heralds the importance of the
sexual threshold in the formation of any well-balanced personality.
Winnicott identifies the transitional object as the infant's first
movement towards independence and creativity. We welcome papers that
analyze literary and cinematic works through the lens of mythology,
psychology, and anthropology, in particular those that offer insight into
our journey towards adulthood or the many transitional phases of

2) Spiritual Passage : Religious texts embrace the term as a means to
connect the real world with the mystical world. Consider that the most
common euphemism for death is “passing,” as if life and death are
separated by a dividing line that one need only pass over. In many
religious stories and folk tales, gods pass among their creatures
unaware, or even pass as one of them: Christ as a man; Aphrodite as a
shepherd girl; Zeus as a bull, a swan, a shower of gold. Faiths that
embrace reincarnation see the spirit passing through different forms,
different stages, before reaching her ultimate destination. Papers
exploring passages of the spirit, be they heaven-bound or hell-bent, in
print or celluloid, are welcome.

3) Passage as Journey : The term is still used widely in travel circles.
We book passage on a train, plane, boat, or bus, and the impetus for such
a journey is varied: vacation, rest, family, career, adventure, love.
Travel literature is its own genre, complete with a long list of
historical and imaginary travelogues, from Marco Polo's adventures in
China to More's satiric journey to Utopia, from Verne's 20,000 Leagues
Under the Sea to Tolkien's tomes devoted to Middle Earth. That doesn't
even touch the boom in 20 th / 21 st century science fiction. Epic
journeys often require a quest, with a celebratory song to go with it;
from the Beowulf scop to the Beat poet, Arlo Guthrie to the Rolling
Stones, lyricists remind us that “Life is a Highway.” We welcome papers
invoking the call to travel, regardless of the destination.

4) Passage to America : As a nation, we trace our heritage to travelers,
dissatisfied with their present lot and seeking passage to a new world.
Regardless of your political stance, our Statue of Liberty continues to
invite “huddled masses, yearning to breathe free.” We join the current
debate by inviting papers on immigration literature and film, from the
idealized passengers on the Mayflower to today's no-less-political, but
certainly more problematic would-be citizens, passing into America with
or without a green card. One could also analyze America 's identity
through the pioneers' attempt to “civilize” the West as well as the
romantic ramblings of our literary icons: the hobo, the Huck Finn, and
the runaway in American narrative.

5) Literary Passages : For the academic, passages are our stock in trade,
the medium through which we journey through the text; for it's a rare
class that dares to tackle Shakespeare's ­Tempest in one sitting. Instead,
we are dwellers, preferring to spend quality time with an image, echo,
leitmotif, pattern, or moment in the text. Papers that celebrate
the “passage” with an extended close reading are welcome. We also invite
papers that seek to analyze the process of close reading or any other
literary theory that claims to illuminate the art form through an
analysis of its parts.


In addition to our conference theme, we also invite scholars, teachers,
and graduate students to submit papers that address any topic relevant to
our profession, e.g., English, American, or World literature; film
studies, women's studies, and multicultural studies; literary theory;
linguistics; book history and textual criticism; interdisciplinary
studies; pedagogical approaches: class discussion, online courses,
computers and technology, teacher education, English as a second
language; composition and rhetoric; creative writing; popular culture; as
well as those topics that relate to our lives as academics: student
advising; grade inflation; assessment techniques (for student and
teacher); administrative posts and service positions; or anything
relating to the changing identity of the English department: how it is
perceived, appreciated, or utilized by the university.

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Received on Fri Sep 14 2007 - 09:34:49 EDT