CFP: [Theory] Narrative and its Other: Images, Texts, and Contexts, University of Calgary, March 28-30, 2008

full name / name of organization: 
Richard Brock
contact email:

Panel session to be held at "Literature and Its Others: Inside, Outside,
and Between the Disciplines"
University of Calgary Free Exchange Graduate Conference

28-30 March 2008

For more information, please email (site still in development)

"Narrative and its Other: Images, Texts, and Contexts"

W.J.T. Mitchell has written of images that “they must be understood as a
kind of language; instead of providing a transparent window on the world,
images are now regarded as the sort of sign that presents a deceptive
appearance of naturalness and transparence concealing an opaque,
distorting, arbitrary mechanism of representation, a process of
ideological mystification.” The image, then, may at once be seen as
literature’s complement (since it contains a wealth of quasi-linguistic
and narrative properties) and its Other (since it resists the
demystifying, expository impulses of narrative).

This panel seeks papers which explore the always fraught interartistic
relationship between image and text. Particularly welcome are those
proposals that examine the political and ideological implications of
verbal representations of art, or iconic representations of language. What
Others, for example, does the visual art object conceal, and how might
they be given voice by iconic or ekphrastic narratives? Conversely, what
narrative properties are iconic objects such as national flags or artistic
landmarks assumed to have by the contemporary iconoclasts who publicly
destroy them?

Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

• The “sister arts” and sibling rivalry: relations and tensions
between image and text;
• Images of capital: talking pictures and the consumer;
• Visual representation as an ideological tool;
• The image as metonym: pictures in the service of cultural
identities and stereotypes;
• The rhetoric of the frame: what is revealed or concealed by the
act of visual or narrative framing;
• The “Mona Lisa Smile” syndrome: the lives of images and their
hidden narratives in the public imagination;
• The image in crisis: flag-burning, graffiti and even terrorism as
radical acts of contemporary iconoclasm.

Please submit 250 word proposals (for papers approx. 15 minutes in length)
to panel chair Richard Brock at Attachments should be
in Rich Text or Word format only, and please include your name,
professional affiliation, and contact information in the body of your
email. Deadline for proposals is February 18th, 2008.

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Received on Wed Jan 23 2008 - 15:00:17 EST

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