CFP: "After the World: New Possibilities for Comparative Literature"
International Conference on Comparative Literature, Taipei, Taiwan
Keynote speaker: Professor Samuel Weber (Northwestern University, USA)
We take great pleasure in announcing that the Eleventh Quadrennial International Conference on Comparative Literature, sponsored by the Comparative Literature Association of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and hosted by the English Department at Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan, will be held on December 13-14, 2013. The general theme of the conference is "After the World: New Possibilities for Comparative Literature."
Although comparative literature has always been a field in "permanent crisis," the recent wave of alarm bells about its impending demise seems to be accompanied by a new sense of urgency. Taking the new warnings as an invitation to check our bearings and find new orientations, we would like to invite comparatists to submit papers that critically reflect on the changing position of our discipline in relation to what used to be called the world.
Globalization studies has shown one thing clearly: the (old) world has dissipated. On the one hand, we no longer live under "one" world, whether it is defined by culture, nationality, internationalism, or humanity. On the other hand, the recent geopolitical gravitation toward the non-West and the reemergence of the concept of world literature have paradoxically signified the appearance of "multiple" worlds and the reappearance of one new holistic system. In the 1960s, Deleuze was already anticipating this shift when he invoked the "chaosmos" as more fundamental than the monadic single world. More recently, critics and theorists have returned to Heideggerian "worlding" and "de-worlding," experimented with new concepts such as the planet, the globe, or the "unworld," or embarked upon emergent methodologies such as transnationalism, cosmopolitanism or cross-culturalism.
What remains (undead) in our discipline? What comparative mediations are called for to express the worlds without one world, the globe without fixed worlds, the emerging new forms of life and collectivities of place? How do new conceptualizations of the (post)world add to or compromise our sense-making of it, or intervene in our "reworlding" of its previous incarnations? By asking such questions, we are also looking for possible intimations of the contemporaneity of comparative literature and for ways to show how literary and other kinds of representation do reveal to us realities that are hopefully shareable, in this world or across multiple ones.
We welcome paper or panel proposals that engage with any aspect of the general theme. Possible topics include (but are not limited to) the following:
1. The world: new proposals
2. Renewing comparative literature
3. Translation between/across worlds
4. Transnationalizing the planet
5. The world without us
6. The worldly critic and the text
7. Digitalizing the world
8. Remapping sexuality
9. Ecologies or bios after the world
10. Animal and its Other
The official language for the conference is English. Taiwan-based students and scholars must join the Association in order to present at the conference (membership dues may be paid at the conference or at any time prior to the conference). Free lodging for paper presenters traveling from abroad is available for the nights of December 13 and 14, 2013.
Our working deadline for proposals is March 17, 2013. Notice of acceptance will be sent out before April 15, 2013. Please send your proposal (300-500 words) and short bio to:
Dr. Robin Chen-Hsing Tsai
The Eleventh Quadrennial International Conference on Comparative Literature
c/o English Department, Tamkang University
Tel: +886-2-2621-5656 ext. 3201
For general inquiries, please contact Dr. Robin Chen-Hsing Tsai at the following address: