The Apocalypse and Disaster in Culture

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Southwest PCA/ACA
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The Apocalypse and Disaster in Culture
Area of the 35th Annual Southwest PCA/ACA Conference
February 19-22, 2014 in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the Hyatt Regency Hotel

"It's the end of the world as we know it!" …Or maybe just a major disaster; either way, we are looking to discuss it here. The Apocalypse and Disaster Area is calling for papers about anything apocalyptic or disaster-related. This can be in movies, television, literature, graphic novels, or any other cultural examples of disaster or the end.

Once again, this year did not disappoint in this topic, from Adventure Time to Divergent; the apocalypse is still alive and kicking in our culture and continues to thrive. So why are we so obsessed with ending it all? Why do humans keep coming back to these same types of stories? Why are we seeing a resurgence of alien related apocalypses? What cultural fears do the works represent?

Please note that this area is specifically for those papers related to the apocalypse and disaster. For example, there is now a separate Zombie Culture area, so if it's about the "zombie apocalypse" it goes here, but if it is just about zombies, then it goes to that area.

Abstracts are due by November 1st and should be submitted to the submission database found at

Ideas for topics on Apocalypse and Disaster:

Real examples: "Doomsday Preppers" television documentary, Bath salt "Zombie" attacks, Hurricane Katrina, Tsunami, East Coast Earthquake, Tornadoes, Haiti, Aurora and Newtown Shootings, Atomic culture.

Film and TV: Sharknado, This is the End, Divergent, Oblivion, The Host, World War Z, After Earth, Pacific Rim, Adventure Time, Olympus has Fallen, Melancholia, Falling Skies, The Walking Dead, Resident Evil, Revolution, Terminator, 2012, The Core, Daybreakers, Zombieland, Independence Day, Night of the Comet, Day after Tomorrow, Armageddon, The War of the Worlds, End of Days, Last Night, 12 Monkeys, The Road, The Book of Eli, Dark Angel, Jericho, Battlestar Galactica, Children of Men, The Matrix, Crimson Tide, Invasion, V, Contagion, Dante's Peak.

Literature: Oryx and Crake, Breathe, World War Z, Divergent, Pesthouse, The Road, Children of Men, Alas Babylon, The Stand, etc.

Graphic Novels and video games: Y:The Last Man, Left 4 Dead, Resident Evil, The Walking Dead etc.

Poetry: William Butler Yeats, Gerald Stern, etc.

Religious Apocalypse: Revelations and other religious apocalyptic texts, the Left Behind Series, Rapture Insurance.
Theoretical approaches:
Apocalypse as response to terrorism, conservatism, gender issues
The History of the Apocalypse
Cultural Apocalypse of native cultures through colonization.
Apocalypse and disaster as response to economic issues, capitalism, or consumerism.