Manifest Identity - UPDATE - February 25-26, 2011

full name / name of organization: 
NC State Association of English Graduate Students
contact email: 

At our second annual Association of English Graduate Students Symposium, we wish to explore the many ways that identity manifests itself as an object for study. The concept of identity permeates every text, from its narrator's organizing gaze to the genre in which it is catalogued. Indeed, we invite you to question the term "text" itself, as "text" has come to be identified as anything from a novel to a Facebook page to a film.

We offer students from all areas of English studies a forum in which they may present and discuss their ongoing work through the lens of identity. As students think about themselves and the many identities which they inhabit during their daily lives, they may also think about the ways in which their various identities can be read through their studies, or vice versa.

How and when is identity formed? Why or where is identity formed? Is identity formed at all? How does identity illuminate aspects of a text's major themes? How does it affect a reader's/viewer's experience of a text? How is identity constructed through a text's narrator/protagonist/setting? Indeed, must identity always be constructed, or is identity a natural byproduct of context (rhetorical, historical, cultural)? What is at stake in denials of identity? What occasions allow for the creation of entirely new identities, or is this an impossible goal? Are all identities amalgamations of previous identities?

In order to answer some of these questions, we are seeking submissions that address, but are not limited to, the following topics:

* Liminal nature of identity (hybrid/mixed identities)
* Construction of identity (language, genre, film, gender, time, theory, class, race, sexuality, music, "otherness")
* Deconstruction of identity (denials of identity, mistaken identities, deliberate misidentification, use of disguise, identity theft)
* Character development (film, stage, novel, short story)
* Identity and nationhood (citizenship, immigration, globalization, colonialism, postcolonialism)
* Cyber-identities: SecondLife, The Sims, social media (Facebook, MySpace, Twitter)
* Conspicuous consumption/the outward creation of identity
* Narration and identity (focalization, POV)
* Search for identity (memoirs, psychology, sociolinguistics)
* Issues of plagiarism (identity and ownership)

We welcome submissions from disciplines across English studies: literature, linguistics, film studies, creative writing, scientific/technical writing, rhetoric & composition, and cultural studies.

Proposals for individual presentations should be approximately 300 words; proposals for panel presentations should include 3-4 proposals of 100 words, as well as one 300-word proposal tying everything together. Individual presentations should last 12-15 minutes, and panels will last 45 minutes, with 15 minutes allowed for Q&A.

Email your submissions to Include your name and institution in the body of your email; please remove all identifying markers on your proposal. If you are an undergraduate who would like to be considered, you are required to submit both a proposal and a 10-12 page polished paper.

Deadline: November 28, 2010

Symposium: February 25-26, 2011

We will send confirmations upon the receipt of your proposal. You will be notified of decisions by no later than January 1, 2011.