"Creative Nonfiction in a Global Frame" (MLA Seattle, 5-8 Jan 2012)

full name / name of organization: 
Amardeep Singh
contact email: 

The MLA Committee for "Nonfiction Prose Studies, Excluding Biography and Autobiography" is soliciting proposals for a panel on the topic of "Creative Nonfiction in a Global Frame."

This panel explores texts that blend travel writing, journalism, political critique, and memoir, in light of postcolonial theory and critical globalization studies. Writers such as Suketu Mehta, Azar Nafisi, William Dalrymple, Sonia Faleiro, Patrick French, Rory Stewart, and Amitava Kumar, to name just a few, have reinvented the genre once described as "literary travel writing" with a series of texts that seem to bely straightforward classification. In many cases the new writing speaks back to colonial travel writing in light of contemporary circumstances: the "war on terror," cultural globalization, economic liberalization/post-socialism, and the (ongoing, expanding) crisis in postcolonial governance.

What are the parameters for the new global creative nonfiction? How do contemporary writers address controversies over authenticity and identity in the new writing? Is this emerging genre of writing contributing to new forms of literary cosmopolitanism?

250 word abstracts to Amardeep Singh (amardeep@gmail.com) by March 25. Early inquiries welcome.