CFP: [Film] Films, Farms, Factories (11/30/08; 3/26-28/09)

full name / name of organization: 
Cynthia Miller
contact email: 

Call for Papers
Films, Farms, Factories: Landscaping an Empire
The Green Nineteenth Century
30th Annual Conference of the Nineteenth Century Studies Association
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, March 26-28, 2009
Deadline: November 30, 2008

During the nineteenth century, America was launching its empire just as
the British empire had reached its pinnacle. The transition British to
American hegemony is often located, reductively, in the years following
World War I, when world economies, along with artistic and literary
cultures, tilted massively westward. But, even if such is the case, the
nineteenth century is the fulcrum, when basic definitions of artistic,
economic, domestic, and political success were supplanted by new
responses to monumental feats of civil and industrial engineering, to
astounding technological revolutions, to the march of empiricism, to the
rise of new literary and artistic forms, and, most of all, to the
acquisition, distribution, and managementâ€"especially in Americaâ€"of land.

“Success” has meant different things in different civilizations. Asia and
Africa, for example, have not shared Western notions of success because,
historically, their societies have had radically different epistemic and
moral structures. In Europe and America, however, success is most often
measured by the territory a person or a corporation or a government
controls. It is a notion that seems to spring naturally from our contact
with virgin soil. As soon as James Fennimore Cooper charted the literary
landscape of the frontier, America understood, narratively, the terms of
its success. Cooper's novels, despite their artistic inferiority,
initiated central questions about what western civilization really was,
what it looked like in transition, at its leading edge, when it shaped
and controlled land: physically, industrially, ecologically,
economically, racially, artistically. Who belongs where, who goes where,
who consumes or relinquishes which resources, what geographical features
qualify as artistic, when and how do economies emerge or wither from the
politics of land managementâ€"these are the concerns of nineteenth-century
America at the frontier of its civilization.

This area of panels invites papers that examine how film has used
depictions or narratives of land management to define nineteenth-century
civilization, to examine the identity of a nation, or to describe its
evolution from decisive events in the nineteenth century.

Send your proposal, approximately 200 words, to the session chair by
postal or electronic mail:

Dr. Loren PQ Baybrook
Editor, Film & History
800 Algoma Blvd.
Oshkosh, WI 54901

This area of multiple panels is sponsored by the Center for the Study of
Film and History.

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Received on Tue Sep 16 2008 - 00:06:03 EDT