UNApocalypse: Exploring Dystopianism in Texts

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University of North Alabama English Department
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Call for Papers:
The University of North Alabama English Department
Announces the 7th Annual Alabama Regional Graduate Conference in English
February 26-27, 2016

UNApocalypse: Exploring Dystopianism in Texts

Recently, there has been a resurgence of critical interest in dystopianism, which is mirrored by dystopic themes in contemporary literature and pop culture like The Walking Dead, The Hunger Games series, and dystopian graphic novels. The University of North Alabama's Department of English invites proposals for scholarly papers which investigate any aspect of dystopianism or its converse, utopianism, in language, literature, or other media. For example, topics might include readings of works within the genre of utopic or dystopic literature, but we also welcome examinations of these themes in texts. We are interested in receiving examinations of texts from any time period or country of origin, but we are particularly interested in contemporary and nontraditional texts or media.

Possible topics and representative texts may include (but are not limited to):
Film and film adaptations
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
YA literature and novels
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Television shows
Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
Comics and graphic novels
Divergent series (novels and film adaptations)
Studies of fan fiction
V for Vendetta (graphic novel or film adaptation)
Contemporary and classic literature
The Republic by Plato
Marxist and neo-Marxist criticism
Utopia by Thomas More
Gender studies and feminist theory
Zombie genre films, TV shows, novels, and graphic novels
Postcolonial theory
Science fiction and fantasy
Queer theory
Satire and political commentary
Diversity in dystopian texts
Post-apocalyptic texts

The keynote speaker for this conference will be announced at a later date.

We welcome proposals from current students and recent graduates (within the last five years) of MA or PhD programs in English, Film Studies, or Cultural Studies. Presentations should be twenty-minutes in length and may explore a range of topics addressing our theme in relation to literature, film, or other new media. Presentations that utilize audiovisual presentations are encouraged.

Please upload proposals of 250-300 words by December 1, 2015 to the conference website at www.una.edu/englishgradcon. You may also send proposals directly to Eric Hughes at ehughes@una.edu. Suggestions for panels are also welcomed. All proposals will receive a decision on acceptance by January 15, 2016.

Travel Scholarships:
A limited number of travel scholarships for out-of-town presenters are available and must be made at time of proposal submission. Presenters will be notified of travel scholarship award when they are notified of acceptance. More information and the application can be found on our website: www.una.edu/englishgradcon

Prize for Best Paper:
At the closing session of the conference, presenters will be asked to vote on the three best papers presented at the conference. Following the conference, a panel of judges will award first, second, and third place standing to these three papers with a cash prize awarded to the top paper.

Further information on the conference, the University of North Alabama, our department, and the Florence area is available on our website: www.una.edu/englishgradcon.