East European Women's Tales of Relocation

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Romanian Studies Discussion Group, MLA 2014

The increasing pervasiveness of narratives in the everyday life of today's global mediated world has been explored extensively in literary theory and criticism, linguistics, critical discourse analysis, and policy making. Narratives are associated with traditional genres such as the novel and the short story, but also with the stories we live by, with the idea of story and storytelling as reflected in newspaper articles, websites, blogs, forums, visual narratives, oral stories, testimonies. Yet, very few studies address tales of women's permanent or temporary transnational relocation.
We are seeking papers on post-1989 tales of migration by and about East European women engaged in temporary and permanent relocation. Possible topics include but are not limited to:

- oral/written/visual, conventional/unconventional postcommunist narratives of East-European women's migration and mobility in the global age;
- feature films and documentaries as they represent migrant/nomadic women's stories;
- recent changes in narrative patterns (including openings towards Monika Fludernik's "natural narrative"; Joel Fineman's focus on the function of the anecdote in historical writing; H. Porter Abbott's "universal narrative"; or Manuel Castell's stories of the "network society") reflecting East European women's nomadic experiences;
- open narrative forms emerging from women's migrant experiences in the reconfiguration of societies within larger meta-identity frameworks such as the European Union and their impact on policy making (Emery Roe's "narrative policy analysis" and beyond);
- East European women's traumatic or celebratory memories of dislocation/ relocation;
- East European narratives of transnational families, transnational mothering and adoption narratives;
- Comparisons of postcommunist and postcolonial women's tales of migration.

To apply, please send 250-word proposals and short bios to Maria-Sabina Draga Alexandru (sabina.draga@americanstudies.ro).