CFP: Revisiting Metafiction and Metanarrative (4/15/07; M/MLA, 11/8/07-11/11/07)

full name / name of organization: 
Samuel Mark Frederick
contact email: 

Call for papers:

The 2007 Midwest Modern Language Association (M/MLA) panel on the short

Revisiting Metafiction and Metanarrative

This panel seeks to re-examine the role of metafiction and metanarrative
in the short story, with special emphasis on their relation to realism.
Metafictional devices are usually associated with anti-mimetic impulses
that break the realistic illusion of the fictional world. In what ways
have these techniques been used to expand the potentials of the short
story? How-—if at all-—can these narrative devices be seen to enhance the
representational qualities of a work, instead of simply calling them into
question? In recent articles both Monika Fludernik and Ansgar Nünning
insist on distinguishing between metafiction (the act of foregrounded the
fictionality of a text) and metanarrative (a self-reflexive comment that
does not undercut the mimetic illusion, emphasizing only the
constructedness of the discourse). How can this distinction help in
revising our understanding of the self-reflexive impulse in the short
story? In disrupting the mimetic or aesthetic illusion, do the techniques
of metanarrative and metanarration (each in its own way? differently?)
affect only the story being told or also the discourse that gives voice to
this story? Is there a line to be drawn between the realistic effects of
the levels of story and discourse? What is the relation of metanarrative
and/or metafiction to parody? Are there ethical dimensions to these
techniques? This panel will address these and other related questions.
Please send 250 word abstracts by April 15, 2007 to Samuel Frederick,
Cornell University,

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Received on Fri Feb 16 2007 - 20:53:40 EST