CFP: [Rhetoric-Composition] SIU-Carbondale 3rd Annual Graduate Conference - Borders and Boundaries (11/21/08)

full name / name of organization: 
Julie Kares
contact email: 

Call for Papers
Borders and Boundaries
Graduate Conference in Literature and Rhetoric/Composition
Southern Illinois University-Carbondale
March 27-28, 2009

Our third annual Graduate Conference would like to examine the ways in
which borders and boundaries enter the dialogue of literary, cultural, and
theoretical works. How are borders and boundaries established, questioned,
or deconstructed? In what ways are these delineations significant? In
what ways do they reflect the cultural geographies of particular periods
and places?

We ask these questions in part because of our own borderland status and the
peculiarity of our cultural geography in Southern Illinois. Between the
late seventeenth and early nineteenth century, this area went from being a
part of the lands occupied by the Illini and Shawnee to part of “Upper
Louisiana” under French control to part of the British Empire to part of
the Indiana and Illinois Territories to part of the United States. The
well known western dividing line of the Mississippi River has long affected
Southern Illinois’ understanding of itself and its boundaries. Illinois,
particularly the southern part of the state, entered the country as a
Western state and became a Midwestern state with strong cultural and
historical ties to the South.

During the antebellum period, Southern Illinois was one of the few places
within the free states that both allowed and profited from slavery.
Because of the powerful political and financial interests in the salt mines
located in this area, mine owners were allowed to “employ” slaves to do the
physically demanding job of mining the salt. Southern Illinois holds the
distinction of having one of the only sites of the “Reverse Underground
Railroad” that remain in the country. The Crenshaw House in Equality,
Illinois, a site on the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom,
was a place where runaway slaves and kidnapped free Blacks were held before
being “shipped” south. The house’s attic contained tightly packed cells
where men, women, and children were shackled until transport. During the
era of Jim Crow, the train station at Carbondale, Illinois, was the last
point on the line before entering the former slaveholding states of
Missouri and Kentucky, thus literally demarking the “color line.”

All of these examples illustrate the ways in which this region has
identified itself through its boundaries, be they East-West, North-South,
regional, national, cultural or geographic.

In keeping with this tradition, we welcome papers on a wide range of topics
on literature and rhetoric/composition which challenge the distinctions
made or obscured by borders and/or boundaries. Possible topics for session
and individual paper proposals include (but are not limited to):

American Literature
African-American Literature
British Literature
Irish Literature
Comparative Literature
Interdisciplinary Studies
Genre Studies
Film Studies
Immigration Studies
Class Queer Studies
Technology in the Classroom
Diversity in the Writing Classroom
Learning Disabilities
Writing in the Text Message Age
The Writing Space: Traditional vs. Computer Classrooms
Writing Across the Curriculum
Intersections of Literary and Composition Theory
National Interpretations of Teaching Pedagogy

Please send 2-3 page session proposals and/or one-page individual paper
abstracts to Julie Kares at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale: 1000
Faner Drive, Mail Code 4503, Carbondale, Illinois 62901 or electronically
at For electronic submissions, please attach your
submission as a Microsoft Word file. The deadline for proposals is
November 21, 2008.

 From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List
             more information at
Received on Wed Oct 08 2008 - 12:02:11 EDT