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19th Annual English and American Literature Association Confe"Trauma and Literature" (Abstracts by 1/30/11; Conference 11/12/11)
full name / name of organization:
English Department, National Dong Hwa University, Taiwan
Trauma studies as formulated by critics such as Cathy Caruth and Dominick LaCapara engage with the somatic, psychic and social shocks and haunting experiences caused by trauma and violence and represented in texts on and about trauma. Recent literary and cultural scholarship situates trauma studies at the intersection of ethnic/diaspora studies, globalization theory, feminist/queer studies, psychoanalytic theory and ecocriticism and enriches our approaches to the variegated traumatic spectacles. Trauma is not just a modern phenomenon, but is widely represented in pre-modern literature with the recurrent topics of wars, famine, disease, and natural disasters. Beowulf is an exemplary text setting up the inextricable links between the genesis of history and the traumatic encounter with monstrosity. The Middle Ages witness the devastation brought by the Black Death, thus initiating the tradition of plague wiring, a precursor to today’s HIV/AIDS literature. Revenge, torture, violence, the wounded body are common materials in Shakespeare. In the 17th century, Robert Bourton’s Anatomy of Melancholy betrays the interests in the psychological symptoms and affective traumas such as madness and melancholy. Writers of the Romantic, realist or modernist schools share a similar concern with and reaction against the shock of modernity, employing different aesthetic modes to deal with the traumatized modern subject.
Possible subtopics include but are not limited to
Interested scholars are invited to submit a 500-word abstract, keywords, as well as a brief CV to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org.