American Gothic: Unsettling the Nation (ALA 2011, Boston, 5/26-5/29; proposals by 1/20/2011)

full name / name of organization: 
Michelle Sizemore/University of Kentucky

American Literature Association
Boston, May 26-29, 2011

American Gothic: Unsettling the Nation

Since Teresa Goddu's ground-breaking study, American Gothic criticism has produced powerful models for historicizing gothic constructions and subversions of national identity, national narrative, and national myth. Building on this work, this panel re-considers the American Gothic through critical paradigms that challenge the self-evident category of nation, including transnationalism and postcolonialism. What is meant by "American Gothic" when we imagine this literary production as part of a more global history or culture?

Especially welcome are papers that:

*Conceptualize the American Gothic in relation to phenomena on, outside, and across U.S. borders.
*Situate the American Gothic in pre-national and "post"-national contexts.
*Use transnational frameworks to explore the gothic concern with nationalism.
*Examine the relationship between gothic texts typically categorized as "American" and those belonging to other national literary traditions.
*Combine historical approaches with other theoretical models for gothic study (e.g., psychological, affective, tropological, etc.)
*Reflect on the scope of the American Gothic, considering how to set conceptual limits even as we seek to redraw geographical boundaries.

Please send abstract (250-500 words) to Michelle Sizemore by January 20, 2011.