Bureaucracy (ACLA 2013)

full name / name of organization: 
Emily Johansen and Alissa Karl
contact email: 

This CFP is for the ACLA 2013 conference, held in Toronto from April 4-7, 2013. Proposals should be uploaded on the ACLA website by November 15, 2012: http://acla.org/submit/index.php

Panel: Bureaucracy
Co-Organizers: Emily Johansen (ejohansen@tamu.edu) and Alissa Karl (akarl@brockport.edu)

This seminar will think through the role, possibilities, and problems of bureaucracy in “global positioning systems.” We hope to convene a series of papers that probe the interface of particular bureaucratic systems (both state and private—such as bureaucracies of health care, insurance, financial institutions and the like) with other processes of global governance, designation and mapping, but that also examine “bureaucracy” more broadly as a cultural, and literary form. Given these objectives, we encourage participants to use this seminar not only to analyze how literary and other texts treat bureaucratic forms and themes, but also to explore matters of method and theory that the notion and histories of bureaucracy present.

We encourage paper submissions that issue from the reinvigorated interest in the state, governance and welfarism in recent literary criticism. We also welcome participants working on other kinds of global systems, and within any period or language. Papers may consider but are not limited to:

• How might bureaucracy be defined in contemporary or historical contexts, or inform methodologies of literary and cultural study?
• How do literary and cultural texts posit and incorporate bureaucratic practice?
• What are the potential contributions of “bureaucratic analysis” to the fields of transnational, cosmopolitan, postcolonial, or other areas of literary, cultural and theoretical inquiry?
• Who is the bureaucratic subject?
• How does bureaucracy define and administer gender, class, sexuality, race, and ethnicity?
• How do bureaucracies determine territory, borders, and spatial imaginaries in general? What are the spaces of bureaucracy?

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