CFP: The Construction of African American Folk (9/1/05; NEMLA, 3/2/06-3/5/06)

full name / name of organization: 
Kocher, Ruth Ellen
contact email: 

Panel Title: The Construction of Folk: Traditions, Interpretations, and Appropriations in African American Literature
Conference: Northeast Modern Language Association, Philadelphia, PA March 2-5, 2005
I am accepting paper proposals until September 1, 2005 for the aforementioned panel. Before submitting your proposal, please consider the following short panel description.
The "folk" is celebrated as not only a performative aspect of African American culture but a "trueness" that transcends diasporic wandering and displacement, often recalling the images and sounds of an idealized southern home-place. This panel seeks to investigate the many faces of "folk" in African American literature and art and the ways folk is both a
representative trope that asserts some linguistic and imagistic tradition at the same time that it is problematically reappropriated and performed as a caricatured idealization of blackness. The significance of this work is evident in the considerable scholarship dedicated to blackface and minstrelsy as performative types of blackness that exist in what Eric Lott calls 'the white imaginary,' well as the considerable attention given to writers of a supposed and evolving 'black aesthetic' throughout the 20th century. Please email abstracts by September 1, 2005 to Dr. Ruth Ellen Kocher, Email abstracts only. All work should conform to MLA style. Please include abstract, name, position, institution and/or contact information, and email. For other correspondence, contact information is as follows: 421 Lucas Hall, Department of English, University of Missouri-St. Louis, One Universtiy Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63121

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Received on Tue Aug 09 2005 - 10:02:04 EDT