Sustainable Work, Invisible Class, Unpaid Labor, and Forgotten Culture in American Literature (DUE 6.1.14)

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In keeping with this year’s SAMLA theme of Sustainability and the Humanities, this panel will investigate the difficulties with sustainable representations of work, class, and labor in American literature. As the predominant American myth of success states that class is but a transitory state, making work, labor, and social class an important part of the literary and academic conversation remains a struggle for scholars interested in these issues. The questions we are interested in posing in this session are: How can scholars emphasize a focus on issues of class, work, and labor in American literature? How can this emphasis be sustained as part of a larger conversation with American literary scholarship? What types of works should be studied, revived, or reinterpreted to bring this conversation to the forefront of American literary scholarship? How can discussions of class be sustained in a country that continually attempts to erase class differences? We are interested in submissions focusing on any of these questions or any pertinent issues surrounding work, class, labor, and culture in American literature.

If you are interested, please submit a 250-word abstract to by June 1, 2014.

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