CFP: National & Literary Perspectives of the Latin American Writer Abroad (11/1/06; ACLA, 4/19/07-4/22/06)

full name / name of organization: 
Kelly Comfort
contact email: 

CFP: Foreign Attraction or Repulsion: National and Literary Perspectives of
the Latin American Writer Abroad.
(11/1/06; ACLA, 04/19/07-04/22/06)

ACLA 2007: "Trans, Pan, Intra: Cultures in Contact."

April 19-22, 2007, Puebla, Mexico

The ACLA 2007 Conference—"Trans, Pan, Intra: Cultures in Contact"—aims to
address what is basic to the discipline of Comparative Literature as it
analyzes the "relations between and among writers, works, languages,
traditions, cultures, nations, continents, and histories" and
explores "methods and mechanisms by which those relations create meaning."
Our proposed seminar—"Foreign Attraction or Repulsion: National and Literary
Perspectives of the Latin American Writer Abroad"—offers one way of
approaching the theme of ACLA 2007: to examine the experiences and
contributions of Latin American writers who have left their hometowns and
local cities, to live, work or travel in metropolitan centers abroad either to
the north in the United States or Canada or across the Atlantic to
cosmopolitan areas in Europe.

We invite proposals for papers that address the ways in which the experience
of Latin American writers living and writing abroad (and participating in
foreign literary and artistic circles) has led them either to embrace the
foreign metropolis and borrow hegemonic ideas, ideologies, and literary forms,
or to distance themselves from these urban settings abroad and break inherited
molds so as to create something new, authentic, and autochthonous. Our
proposed session thus considers the relationships, dialogues and polemics
between Latin American writers and their contemporaries—foreign and native; at
home and abroad—as well as the repercussions of such contact for Latin
American literary autonomy. We are interested in papers that address how
anxiety of influence or fear of suppression by a dominant foreign culture
brings about a new or renewed vision of not only "nuestra América," but so
too "nuestra literatura." We also seek papers that explore the reception and
recognition that the Latin American writer receives in the country of origin
as compared with the foreign metropolises, since extended periods abroad often
raises questions of authenticity and authority at home.

One might consider the example of José Martí, whose foreign heritage and
extensive residence abroad preceded his call for a revival of the local, the
indigenous, and the autochthonous in terms of regional, literary, and cultural
production. Martí speaks of the dangers of foreign influence and promotes
collaboration and communion among Latin American writers. Alejo Carpentier,
in his famous 1949 preface to El reino de este mundo, transforms French
Surrealism into the so-called "real-maravilloso"—a vehicle for recounting
the "magical" or "marvellous" realities of the hybrid Carribean setting, and
thereby demonstrates how European models can lead to a distinctly Latin
American literary forms. In defining the genre of the "real-maravilloso,"
Carpentier articulates the telos of his aesthetic and cultural project, namely
to recapture the fabulous past and update it and to preserve whatever was
still meaningful and valuable in the collapsing cultures of the west. Other
Latin American writers whose contact with foreign cultures and influences
inevitably shaped their views on literary production and national or regional
identity include Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, José Enrique Rodó, Ruben Darío,
José Asunción Silva, José Vasconcelos, Gabriela Mistral, José Eustasio Rivera,
Alejo Carpentier, Octavio Paz, Gabriel García Márquez, Julio Cortázar, José
Luis González, Gioconda Belli, Rosario Ferré, Zoe Valdes, Reinaldo Arenas,
Isabelle Allende, and Carlos Fuentes, to mention only some of the most salient

Please submit a 500 word abstract online at the ACLA website: by
November 1, 2006.

If you wish to contact the seminar organizers directly, our information is as
Kelly Comfort,
Vanessa Perez,

--Kelly ComfortAssistant Professor of SpanishSchool of Modern LanguagesGeorgia Institute of Technology613 Cherry StreetAtlanta, Georgia 30332-0375Phone: 404-385-0198Fax: ========================================================== From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List Full Information at or write Jennifer Higginbotham: ==========================================================Received on Thu Oct 05 2006 - 03:42:06 EDT