CFP: Meena Alexander critical essays (8/1/05; collection)

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

Critical Essays on Meena Alexander: A Call for Papers

Contributions are invited for a collection of critical essays on any
aspect of Meena Alexander's work as poet, memoirist, novelist,
literary theorist, and thinker. The publication of the tenth
anniversary edition of Fault Lines as well as two recent volumes of
poetry, Illiterate Heart (winner of PEN Open Book Award 2002) and Raw
Silk (2004), provides a watershed moment to examine and evaluate
Alexander's creative oeuvre in the context of contemporary
transnational, multi-ethnic, and feminist theory and aesthetics.
Although Alexander has been widely anthologized and acclaimed as a
contemporary South Asian American poet and thinker, no major collection
of critical commentaries on her work has yet appeared, a void that this
collection hopes to address.

How does Alexander's work intervene in the coruscating issues of the
present moment and map the circuitous routes of violence from religious
fundamentalisms in India, her country of birth, to the devastation and
trauma of post-9/11 New York City, her current home? How does
Alexander's work reassert the power of poetry and passionately advocate
for the preservation of the aesthetic in a time of violence and strife?
Critical essays examining Alexander's creative work using the
methodologies of transnational feminism, deconstruction,
psychoanalysis, postcolonial theory, queer studies, narrative theory,
cultural studies, and genre studies are welcome. We welcome essays
examining interconnections between Alexander's poetic practice and
thought with grassroots or pedagogic activism, as well as others that
contextualize her contribution to the field of postcolonial and Asian
American literatures.

Given below is a suggestive but not an exhaustive list of possible

* The Lyric in a Time of Violence

* Transnational Feminist Poetics

* Rethinking Indian Nationalism

* Trauma and Language

* Migration, Exile, and Home

* US Race Relations and Multicultural Pedagogy

* Postcoloniality, History and the Personal Essay

* The Body and Memory

* Memoir as a Genre

* Autobiographical Fiction

Please send abstracts of 500 words by email to Lopamudra Basu of
University of Wisconsin-Stout at AND to Cynthia
Leenerts of East Stroudsburg University at by August 1,
2005. Completed essays will be due by October 15, 2005. Queries are
welcome. Preference will be given to essays between 3000 and 4000

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Received on Sun Apr 24 2005 - 11:03:50 EDT