Them's Fightin' Words: Implicit and Explciit Combat Methodologies

full name / name of organization: 
Geoffrey B. Elliott / Oklahoma State U

The will to fight is embedded in human nature and so in human languages and literatures. Many of the most widely-read works in any language have much to say about the ways in which people work to injure and destroy each other's properties and bodies. Even many texts which perhaps do not count as "literary" treat the matter; most systems of martial arts have guidebooks written by advanced and expert practitioners of those arts, and militaries throughout the world publish manuals to assist in training people better how to kill. Because so much effort is spent in describing and teaching fighting in the written word and other media, it seems appropriate to examine such depictions to uncover what they say about their writers, their readers, and the world in which they all exist. This panel at the South Central Modern Language Association conference, Them's Fightin' Words: Implicit and Explicit Combat Methodologies, seeks to examine overt, and explicate covert, textual discussions of how best to fight; abstracts of papers for possible inclusion in the session are welcome. They should be no more than 300 words and should be sent to before the end of the business day on 14 February 2014.