CFP: Representing the Crowd in U.S. Literatures and Cultures (3/10/06; NEASA, 9/15/06-9/16/06)

full name / name of organization: 
Brian Sweeney
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Representing the Crowd in U.S. Literatures and Cultures

New England American Studies Association Conference: "Homeland
In/Securities: Race and Citizenship in the United States"
September 15-16, 2006
University of Southern Maine, Portland, ME

Where do we find ourselves in a crowd? Poe wrote that the "man of the
crowd" is one who is incapable of being alone with himself, while
Emerson celebrated the individual who "in the midst of the crowd keeps
with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude." To Walter
Benjamin, the crowd was "the veil from behind which the familiar city
beckoned as phantasmagoria to the flâneur," while Yogi Berra hit upon a
central paradox of the crowd when he reportedly said of a certain night
club, "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."

This panel seeks papers that explore literary, visual, and other
artistic representations of crowds in U.S. literatures and cultures from
the early national period to the present, especially as such
representations wrestle with questions of race and nation. What role do
artistic representations of crowds have in defining individual subjects
and national collectives? To what extent is the crowd continuous with
the nation, and to what extent and in what ways does the crowd model an
alternative collective? What happens to the gendered, raced,
class-bound, and otherwise discursively constituted subject when she or
he enters into a crowd?

Papers welcomed on (but not limited to) the following topics: the man of
the crowd; the flâneur; physiognomy and phrenology; the detective; mobs;
riots; political demonstrations; urbanism; city novels; parks; mass
culture; arcades; shopping malls; art in public spaces (cinema, theatre,
public art); virtual crowds; urban design; political representation; &c.

Send one-page abstract and curriculum vitae to
<> by March 10, 2006.

For more information on this conference, please visit

--==================Brian D. SweeneyDoctoral StudentDepartment of EnglishBrown UniversityBox 1852Providence, RI 02912 ========================================================== From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List Full Information at or write Jennifer Higginbotham: ==========================================================Received on Tue Feb 14 2006 - 11:11:42 EST