Rethinking Early Modern Subjectivity (NeMLA 2017)

deadline for submissions: 
September 30, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
Northeast Modern Language Association
contact email: 

Modernity is often defined as a series of political, social, and economic shifts related to the emergence of an autonomous subject. Nevertheless, there is a lack of consensus of how to measure the underlying forces driving this supposed change of paradigm. In light of recent approaches to subjectivity, we invite participants to circulate 5-8 pages papers (with theoretical or empirical foci on the topic) and discuss them after a brief presentation. The goal of the seminar is therefore to interrogate the condition of the “early modern subject” through the analysis of established binaries such as (but not limited to) unity/plurality, transcendence/immanence, individual/communal, East/West, local/global, medieval/modern, etc.

Subjectivity both influences and relies on the interconnected paradigms that articulate modernity (gender, science, economy, religion, ecology). We believe that new approaches to the topic should call into question its somehow stable roots not only by making a retrospective, but also by looking back and analyzing the traces that problematize the emergence of the modern subject.

Taking advantage of the format —a seminar—, the proposed session is aimed to bring together specialists in a wide range of fields (including History, Philosophy, Music, Art, and Linguistics) in order to encourage a stronger cross dialogue between disciplines.


Please submit 200/300-word abstracts by September 30, 2016, directly through NeMLA's system:

The 48th Annual NeMLA Convention will take place in Baltimore, Maryland on March 23-26, 2017.