UPDATE: Confronting Danger (1/15/06; 4/6/06-4/9/06)

full name / name of organization: 
Carrie Collenberg
contact email: 

CONFRONTING DANGER Update: Please note that we have extended the date
for proposal submittals to January 15th.

Call for Papers:

The graduate students in the Department of German, Scandinavian & Dutch
the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities are pleased to announce the
upcoming conference, "Confronting Danger," which will take place April

The purpose of this conference is to consider how the notion of danger
affects individuals and society, how and why people engage in risky
behavior, and how danger is represented in the media and the arts.
alerts, such as the constant threat of terrorist attacks, epidemics, and
natural disasters have become almost quotidian and resonate with
authorities and civilians in various ways. Whereas the evocation of
is considered necessary for the preservation of life, it can also lead
paranoid reactions and the instrumentalization of fear. "Confronting
Danger" aims at exploring the ambivalent nature of the concept of
danger to
negotiate its constructive and destructive potential. By rethinking the
broad implications of the label "danger," our goal is to gain a better
understanding of the importance of danger as a driving force behind
socio-political, historical, cultural, and aesthetic processes.

How do we respond to danger on an emotional and psychological level as
as on a socio-cultural level? What motivates people to engage in
activities? How does being labeled "potentially dangerous" influence the
lives of individuals and religious, ethnic or political groups? What
one dangerous event or person celebrated and the other repressed or
marginalized? How does the perception of danger change over time? And
which conditions can art itself be dangerous without annihilating its
discourse? How is danger mediated to the public? If we take into account
that thinking the unthinkable and transgressing disciplinary boundaries
become nearly a requirement for academics, has the trope of the
mind become an empty concept? What risks does a scholar have to take in
order to produce transgressive and innovative rather than predictable
research? Who decides what is dangerous and what hierarchies of power
this assume? To what extent is the person who engages in a dangerous
activity aware of the consequences?

We welcome in particular critical and creative projects that employ
interdisciplinary approaches to Germanic Studies. We also welcome
that are not traditional paper form.

Possible topics include but are not limited to:
politics of paranoia
states of emergency
danger kitsch
pseudo danger
viral cultures
news agencies and reality television
taboos, transgressions, and disruptive events
civil (dis)obedience, hero persecution or worshipping
representations of danger in literature, film, music, media
political, women's, artistic, student movements, strikes etc.
the unknown, the other, the excluded
persecution of marginalized groups
monsters, barbarians, hordes
violence and aggression
expulsion and excommunication
migration and exile, diaspora
the relationship between aesthetics and ethics
manipulation and perception of fear and anxieties
challenging canons and interdisciplinarity
questioning the future of academia
questionable publications, genre transgressions, censorship

Please send a proposal of up to 300 words, in German or English, by
JANUARY 15 to Carrie Collenberg at colle027_at_umn.edu

Keynote speaker: Alice A. Kuzniar
Presentations will be in English.
Room and board and travel stipends may be available.

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         or write Jennifer Higginbotham: higginbj_at_english.upenn.edu
Received on Tue Jan 10 2006 - 09:34:01 EST