CFP: The Transforming Body in Popular Culture (UK) (2/27/07; 4/25/07, 5/30/07, 10/07, 12/07)

full name / name of organization:
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The Transforming Body in popular culture

University of Southampton, UK, 2007

There has recently been an intensification of interest in the changing body
in popular culture, from films and writing focusing on the makeover
phenomenon or gender reassignment, to reality TV programmes detailing surgical
alteration, to health-, celebrity- and horror-focused narratives presenting
transformation sentimentally or monstrously. These contemporary perspectives are
embedded in a longer history of transformation stories in
classical/post-classical cinema, literature, photography, art and performance.

In 2007 Southampton University will be hosting a series of seminars
considering the unique position of the transforming body within popular culture in
the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This series will provide a forum at
which these sensational spectacles and cultural artefacts can be addressed in
the context of a reassessment of established theories of the body, providing
new ways of framing and understanding body culture. Possible areas of
interest might include:
· Make-over narratives and ‘cinderella stories’
· Gender and transgender
· The transforming celebrity body
· Medical/surgical narratives
· The hybrid or obscene body
· Body art, performance art and fetish culture
· Monstrosity, plasticity and body horror
· The body as sick/damaged or whole/perfected

We are open to proposals focusing on any revealing or provocative cultural
phenomena and texts, from a wide range of perspectives and disciplines. Please
email abstracts of 250 words to and by
23th February 2007. If your proposal is accepted, you will be invited to
present a paper of 30 minutes at Southampton University, UK, at one of our four
themed seminars. These are scheduled for April 25th, May 30th, and in October
and December (dates tbc). Travel expenses will be paid for speakers, though we
cannot cover overnight accommodation or a fee. We expect to secure a
publisher for an edited collection of selected papers from the series.

Travel bursaries for attendees: A limited number of small travel bursaries
will be available per event to help towards the cost of attending for those
not giving papers. Please contact the organisers at the email address below if
you are interested in this. We will require a 150 word statement outlining
your research interests and indicating how participation at the event will
enhance your research.

Professor Linda Ruth Williams ( & Peri Bradley
School of Humanities, University of Southampton, UK

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Received on Sun Feb 04 2007 - 13:30:38 EST