[UPDATE]Political Speak: The Use and Abuse of Rhetoric in Support of Torture and Punishment SAMLA: 11/5-11/7 2010 Abstracts 4/30

full name / name of organization: 
Jessica Elena Charles/ South Atlantic Modern Language Association SAMLA
contact email: 

Torture: What is the fascination with this arcane activity? The very nature torture is that it speaks to us viscerally—a prolonged sensory activity that captivates its audience with images of pain and misery. It is something society looks down upon yet simultaneously has an almost obsessive interest in viewing, dissecting and in some cases applying.

This panel seeks to present theories and analysis regarding the use of rhetorical methods in history, literature, art and film to rally the masses in support of the very activities that society collectively deems heinous.

Paper topics may concern: the historical, literary, or artistic use of speech and language in relation to: public torture and execution, nationalistic or ethnocentric influences and biases (i.e., xenophobia, war), population control, prevalence of the use of torture in contemporary film (ex. "Saw" series of films), maintenance of an existing political hierarchies, influence on religion and faith, mind control (ex. fear and intimidation), the Holocaust and other acts of genocide throughout the world - past or current.

Abstracts should be 300 words or less and submitted to Jessica Charles at CharleJE@pgcc.edu by April 30, 2010.