Theorizing Compassion: Activism and Global Citizenship in the works of Alice Walker
Activism and Global Citizenship in the works of Alice Walker
Panel to be presented at the 2010 meeting of the Northeast Modern Language Association. Montreal, April 7-11.
Over the course of her long career as poet, novelist, short story writer, essayist and social activist, Alice Walker has an avowed commitment to "the survival of [her] people, whole." From an initial grounding in Black peoples' experiences of economic and social hardship in the rural, segregated South, Walker's conception of "wholeness" has evolved to encompass a complex, pluralistic kinship network among and between: women, men and women of various social and ethnic backgrounds, humans, animals and the planet itself. Her creative work explores and theorizes the redemptive power of compassion as a foundation for spiritual, social and political revolution(s). As Walker herself puts it in a recent blog posting, "[w]hen all is lost, or nearly lost, tenderness remains. We can offer what we are" (codepink4peace.org/blog/2009/02).
We propose a panel discussion of global citizenship as defined and re-defined against the frame of Alice Walker's work as "theorist of compassion." Papers – approximately 20 minute presentations – addressing any aspect Walker's work, from disciplinary and/or interdisciplinary perspectives are invited; papers addressing issues of the body and/or embodied spirituality are particularly welcomed. Send 250 word abstracts to Dr. Andrew J. Price at firstname.lastname@example.org