Topics in American Literature, SAMLA Convention 2011, Atlanta, GA, FR Nov. 4

full name / name of organization: 
Damien Schlarb
contact email: 

***Late Open Call***
Special Focus: The Power of Poetry in the Modern World
Conference Date and Time: Friday November 4, 2011, 11:45 a.m.
Panel: Topics in American Literature

This panel seeks to trace the formation of what might be called the modern American "self" in literature. Our focus will be on the different ways in which prose and poetry illustrate the genesis and anatomy of an American mindset between the antebellum period and the early twentieth century. Arguably, this mindset manifests most clearly in social struggles like the suffrage and abolitionist movements, as well as debates about technology or spirituality. The ways in which these issues are confronted, contested, or ignored will be of special interest to us. The panel will operate under two premises that are to invite debate: (a) that there are unique, monolithic American responses to any and all of these issues, and (b) that American positions are the result of a struggle with and against European and other transatlantic traditions. We welcome paper proposals that critically investigate the issues outlined above in topical, historical, theoretical and philosophical manners. By September 30, please submit 250-word abstracts to Damien Schlarb, Georgia State University,