The Specter of Race: Stephen King's Represenations of Black Masculinity

full name / name of organization: 
Dr. Yael Maurer , Tel Aviv University
contact email: 
yael.maurer@gmail.com

The Specter of Race: Stephen King's Representations of Black Masculinity
One of the most pertinent concerns in King's extensive oeuvre is the black body. King's works often deal with the body as a site of horror and abjection. His novella The Body is only one example where the coming of age narrative is necessarily mediated through the search for the body of a dead young boy. Other texts are more clearly invested in the body's potential for (self) destruction. In works like Carrie, Thinner and Pet Sematary, fear of the body's destructive potential is dramatized in horrifying detail.
What this collection seeks to examine is one instance of this fascination/repulsion with the body. In King's works, both literary and filmic, we often see figures of black men whose potent masculinity is pitted against white "impotence". King's depiction of these black men, John Coffey in The Green Mile , or Raggedy Man, the leader of the "zombies" in Cell, to name but two striking and seemingly contradictory instances of "blackness", indicates to what extent his concern with white masculinity and its discontents is filtered through his coded representations of black men.
This edited collection seeks essays on the role of black bodies in King's multiverse. The essays will interrogate the significance of the black body in King and ask how these representations of blackness participate in the construction of otherness in America.

Topics may include but are not limited to:

Black bodies and white minds: King's representations of black corporeality
Homoerotic and homosexual bonds in King's work
Writing and the (black) body
King's Southern Gothic
The black Christ

Discussions of filmic and televised adaptations of King's work are welcome.

Please send abstracts of 250 words to Dr. Yael Maurer
The Department of English and American Studies, Tel Aviv University
yael.maurer@gmail.com by 30.11. 2013. (Queries about the CFP should be directed to the same email address)

Completed essays (4500-7000 words) will be due on 30.7.2014

cfp categories: 
american
film_and_television
gender_studies_and_sexuality
journals_and_collections_of_essays
popular_culture
twentieth_century_and_beyond