Panel: "Postapocalyptic Topographies" / SLSA 25, Sept. 22-25, 2011

full name / name of organization: 
Sean Miller / Nanyang Technological University
contact email: 

Armageddon, the rapture, end times, the deluge, nuclear holocaust, global warming. In its myriad forms, apocalypse bears with it both the sense of revelation and cataclysm. It is anticipatory yet horrific. Historically, the postapocalyptic topos has provided fertile ground for an imaginative engagement with contemporaneous ambivalences towards technology, nature, and community. In keeping with the conference theme of "pharmakon," this panel will explore the figure of the apocalypse as an event imagined to result, more often than not, in one of two polarized outcomes: one that kills, as pandemic destruction with dystopian aftermath; or one that cures, as utopian renewal or purification. Papers are invited that address in some way the topic of "postapocalyptic topographies." Approaches to theorizing apocalypse might include: the troubled interanimations of consciousness and environment; anxieties concerning the globalized economy and, among other features, its hyper-specialization and ever-increasing interdependence; social marginality and the role postapocalyptic visions play in hegemonic ideologies; Enlightenment humanism and its other(s); temporalities of the irretrievable and/or the obsolete; the Sublime. Please send paper proposals (250 words) to by May 6, 2011.