CFP: The Undead (9/1/06; 10/19/06-10/20/06)

full name / name of organization: 
UCB Undead Conference


The Undead
A conference at the University of California at Berkeley

October 19-20, 2006
Hosted by the Department of Comparative Literature


>From age-old whisperings of spirits and ghosts to the contemporary
explosion of cultural interest in zombies, the concept of the undead
is one that refuses to die.

Inspired by the profusion of the undead across so many literatures, we
are seeking papers from a variety of disciplines that explore the
significance of the undead in any cultural context or time period. We
also welcome work that takes the undead as an optic to study bodies,
texts, concepts, and cultures that are at the intersections life and

The undead is also a potent symbolic index for the instability of
various categories of subjectivity, such as race, gender, class, and
nationality. We are looking for papers that focus on these entangled

We are interested in works that address the many forms of haunting,
from discussions of authorial influence and working in a "dead"
language, to investigations of spectrality in critical theory and the
persistence of trauma or melancholia.

Through this interdisciplinary conference, we seek to understand the
status of the undead in literature, the arts, and critical theory.

Some possible topics include (but are not limited to)

 - zombies and automatons
 - vampires and parasitism
 - ghosts and folk beliefs
 - figurations of race and gender
 - organ transplants, brain death, stem cells, phantom limbs
 - reanimating/preserving languages
 - trauma, melancholia
 - martyrdom
 - conceptual hauntings
 - creative inspiration
 - authorial influence
 - biopolitics and the human

We welcome submissions from disciplines including but not limited to
literary studies, anthropology, gender and sexuality studies,
psychoanalysis, critical race theory, film studies, folklore,
performance studies, linguistics, musicology, sociology, political
science, rhetoric, art history, and area studies.

Please send abstracts of about 400 words to by
September 1, 2006.


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Received on Wed Jun 07 2006 - 10:16:11 EDT