Doll Encounters, a panel at the (dis)junctions Humanities and Social Sciences Graduate Conference, Apr 5-6. DEADLINE Feb 11

full name / name of organization: 
Josh Pearson and Sarah Lozier, University of California, Riverside

When we encounter dolls as grown-ups, what is it that we are encountering? What might personal and cultural doll-identifications betray about relationships with the past, with gender and sexuality, with play, with tenderness and with terror? This panel invites submissions which reflect upon the sociocultural meaning of the doll as text, as artifact, or, more traditionally, as an enduring literary and filmic obsession. In psychoanalysis as well as in the popular imagination, dolls have long played the role of uncanny object. This panel is particularly interested in the way in which new technologies, products and markets have uncannily reproduced, intensified and responded to anxieties and hauntings from the past. Particularly timely topics might then include the following: dolls for adults (Realdolls and 'reborn' dolls); dolls that move on their own (automatons and cybernetic dolls); and dolls that return the gaze (surveillance dolls; dolls in gothic and horror; 'the double'). Dolls in queer childhood, doll collections, mourning, paper doll books, and relationships between dolls and trauma, are also of interest.

Abstracts of 250-300 words should be submitted at or mailed to no later than February 11th, 2013.

This is a panel call for the 20th Annual (dis)junctions Humanities and Social Sciences Graduate Conference at the University of California, Riverside. This year's general theme, "encountering with(in) texts," examines the impact of situatedness, unexpectedness, and/or unpreparedness on "face to text" encounters with media objects, embodied encounters negotiated through or overdetermined by texts, and representations of "encountering" within texts. Please visit for more information on this year's theme, our other subject- and discipline-specific panel calls, and Keynote Speaker Dr. Nicholas Mirzeoff.