The Trickster in American Literature and Culture American Literature Association Conference 5/27/10-5/30/10 San Francisco

full name / name of organization: 
Natasha Kohl, Fordham University
contact email: 

A Panel for the Annual Conference of the
American Literature Association
San Francisco 5/27/10-5/30/10

The Trickster in American Literature and Culture

A figure of play and ambiguity, the embodiment of paradox, the trickster's cultural function has been to initiate change and illuminate social truths. Tricksters are present in a variety of genres and historical and cultural locations. While these characters have traditionally been defined by their role within a specific cultural framework, recent scholarship such as Jeanne Campbell Reesman's Trickster Lives: Culture and Myth in American Fiction has identified the cross cultural permutations of the trickster and enlarged the feasible arenas for trickster's habitation.

This panel welcomes traditional readings of trickster narratives (in film, literature and popular texts) as well those that challenge traditional definitions of what constitutes a trickster or a "tricky" work. Those works which explore the particular resonance of the trickster for writers of color are particularly encouraged as are those which explore America's attraction as a locale for tricky characters, authors and texts.

Please send a 250-500 word abstract and brief biographical sketch including institutional affiliation, contact information, and AV requirements by January 5, 2010 to:

Tasha Kohl, Fordham University