CFP: The Body in the Digital (11/30/05; ACLA, 3/23/06-3/26/06)

full name / name of organization: 
G. Sigthorsson
contact email: 

American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) Annual Meeting: The
Human and its Others
Princeton University, March 23-26, 2006

Seminar: "The Body in the Digital"

The digital is perhaps the defining "other" of the human body in the
late 20th century. Papers and/or performances are invited that seek to
investigate the informatic relationship between the animal and the
machine, as Norbert Wiener put it in the subtitle of his Cybernetics.
The relation of the carnal to the mathematical, or physical to
digital, is a pressing contemporary concern for artists, theorists
and writers. Therefore this question will be framed as broadly as
possible, in historical terms, inviting scholars specializing in all
periods and areas up to the present, from the Baroque, the 19th
Century and the early 20th to to the present. This seminar will
consider the relation of physicality and digitality, with a cast of
conceptual personae that include thinking machines, automata, robots,
cyborgs, posthumans, and other hybrid monsters.

Topics may include (in no particular order):
Transcendence (e.g., overcoming the body through technology,
"downloading" the mind)
Dualisms (of mind/body, software/hardware, human/machine, etc.)
Media and the human body
Histories of computing
Thinking machines
Norbert Wiener and his contemporaries
Actor-Network Theory (Latour et al.)
Philosophies of the interface
Digital practices
Performing the body online (e.g., blogging, chat, webcams)
The physicality of the Internet
Digital desire
The faces of digital technology
Death and the digital

This seminar is organized in collaboration with the journal Issues in
Contemporary Culture and Aesthetics.

Papers should be 15-20 minutes in length. Deadline for submissions is
30 November. Please submit abstracts of 250 words online at:

Feel free to address any questions or suggestions to the seminar
organizer, Gauti Sigthorsson ( All abstracts
must be submitted via the ACLA website.

For more information on the conference, its location and format, please see:

Gauti Sigthorsson, lecturer
Dept. of Creative, Critical and Communication Studies
University of Greenwich, School of Humanities
Old Royal Naval College, Park Row
London SE10 9LS, United Kingdom
+44 20 8331 8942 / 8800

              From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List
                         Full Information at
         or write Jennifer Higginbotham:
Received on Thu Nov 03 2005 - 12:46:34 EST