Virgin Envy: Contemporary Approaches to Virginity in Literature and Arts

full name / name of organization: 
Canadian Comparative Literature Association/Canadian Association of Hispanists, New Brunswick, Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences

Virginity has long been a trope found in literary and cultural texts, however, how do we understand virginity and why does it matter become two questions worthy of consideration. This joint-panel between the Canadian Comparative Literature Association and the Canadian Association of Hispanists aims to work through the poetics and politics of virginity in narrative, poetry, cinema, graphic novels, and popular culture. In many regards, though virginity has been studied, particularly in Medieval Literature, and aspects of Renaissance and Classical Literature, we have yet to see much consideration of virginity as a theoretical problem in modern texts.

As such, we welcome papers that move beyond the Virgin Mary and the Virgin of Guadalupe that aim to consider virginity as an interdisciplinary matter that must be considered from the widest-possible range of perspectives. Papers presented in these panels may be considered for inclusion in an upcoming book of essays on the topic of virginity. Please submit abstracts of 250 words and a biographical statement or brief CV to Cristina Santos (Brock University, Canada) ( Jonathan Allan (University of Toronto, Canada) (

Deadline: January 15, 2011