Representing Sudan: Media, Culture, Human Rights (edited collection; 5/31/12)

full name / name of organization: 
Kelli Lyon Johnson and Louise Davis
contact email:

When the Republic of South Sudan celebrated its independence in July 2011, many Sudanese people on both sides of the border hoped that the violence that had besieged the country for most of the previous sixty-five years would come to an end. For the first time in decades, Sudan and Sudanese people were represented in global media as agents of their own future. In what could be considered the era of human rights, Sudan figures prominently in calls for gender and ethnic equality, for the abolition of contemporary slavery, for economic opportunity, for an end to violence and increased security for its people, for improved health care, and for the end of other human rights abuses. Poverty, civil war, enslavement, “tribal” conflict, hunger, religious persecution, and military and paramilitary violence—these have characterized representations of Sudan and the Sudanese in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Imbued with tremendous power in the international community, these representations of Sudan have affected international responses to Sudan and its people.

Invited are contributions that address various representations of Sudan at home and abroad. How are these representations explored or negotiated in the media or in other types of cultural production? What role do representations play in the arena of human rights? How do representations of the Sudanese past(s) inform the present situation in both North and South Sudan?

Possible topics include but are not limited to:

• Sudanese representations of their own homeland and history
• Differences in representation(s) of Sudan across cultures and time
• Sudanese and non-Sudan representations of humanitarian crises and/or human rights abuses
• Charity and other fundraising representations of Sudan
• Media responses to and representations of humanitarian crises
• Representations of and/or responses to Darfur
• Celebrity participation in humanitarian efforts
• Representations of the Lost Boys
• The relationship between representation and public policy and/or international engagement
• Northern representations of the South of Sudan

While the collection will concentrate on new writing, some re-worked or previously published submissions may be considered if they significantly advance the project's intellectual investigation.

Please send electronic copies of completed essays (in Chicago style) by May 31, 2012, to both Louise Davis at and Kelli Lyon Johnson at Queries and abstracts are welcome prior to the submission deadline.

Louise Davis
Assistant Professor of American Studies and Integrative Studies
Miami University

Kelli Lyon Johnson
Associate Professor of English
Miami University

Mailing Address:
Miami University, Hamilton Campus
1601 University Blvd.
Hamilton, Ohio 45011

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