African American Literature and Culture Society--In Retrospect May 23-26, 2013

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African American Literature and Culture Society
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The African American Literature and Culture Society invites abstracts (of no more than 250 words) for presentations at the annual conference of the ALA ( We will also consider a limited number of panel proposals (of no more than 500 words).

As this year marks the 20th anniversary of the African American Literature and Culture Society, we are especially interested in panels and papers engaging this year's theme: "in retrospect." Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

*The influence of current paradigms on re-interpretation of African American literature
*Technologies of preserving/re-membering the past: museums, collections, archives, photography, exhibits, retrospectives, etc.
*Assessments of the significance of any number of works/authors with anniversaries in 2012-13: Their Eyes Were Watching God (75th anniversary); Invisible Man (60th anniversary); 25th anniversary of James Baldwin's death, The Signifying Monkey (25th anniversary)
*Past trends and future directions in African American literary studies
*Representations of commemorations, ceremonies and traditions in African American literature
*The historical novel or constructing the past in African American literature
*Contemporary African American literature and aesthetic/thematic continuities with and departures from former literary traditions.
*Imagining the past, imagining the future in African American literature
*The lasting influence of historical/aesthetic/political movements (slavery, Reconstruction, Harlem Renaissance, Black Arts, etc.)

In conjunction with our support of a book drive for which we will be collecting and donating children's books for a local Boston organization, we also call for abstracts for a panel on African American children's literature.

While we welcome papers on the above themes and subthemes, we also encourage submissions on any topic related to African American literature and culture.

Please send abstracts or proposals to Shirley Moody-Turner ( and James Peterson ( by Saturday, December 15th. Presenters must be members of AALCS by the time of the conference. Information about the Society can be found at the AALCS website: