[EXTENDED] Call for Papers, Southwest Popular/American Culture Association Conference "Motor Culture and the Road"

deadline for submissions: 
November 15, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
Southwest Popular/American Culture Association
contact email: 

Deadline for proposal submissions has been extended to November 15, 2016.

Southwest Popular Culture Association, 38th Annual Conference, February 15-18, 2017.

Motor Culture and the Road welcomes papers that engage with a variety of topics that cover motor culture and/or representations of “the road.”  There are wide sweeping possibilities for this focus of study, and therefore multiple disciplines can be represented through this area.   Motor Culture and the Road can simply be about automobiles, travel and/or mobility; but it also is much more expansive to include topics about community building, roadside myths, and/or nostalgia about the past.  However one chooses to interpret the terms motor and road, there is little doubt that both have been influential in shaping popular culture.  Writers, musicians, photographers and screenwriters have long used the image of the car and the open road as sources of inspiration.
This call for papers seeks intriguing and unique approaches to the topic of Motor Culture and the Road.  Studies of the past, present or future of motor culture and the road are all of interest for this conference.   Please join us for the 38th annual conference just steps away from Route 66 for an engaging, interdisciplinary investigation of the increasingly popular and diverse representations of mobility and our culture(s).  Our goal is to leave the conference with a broader understanding of the potentialities of motor culture and the road, the emerging pedagogy in this area, new methodologies for studying motor culture and the road, and our roles as citizens in this culture.

 Proposal topics for Motor Culture and the Road might include, but are not limited to:

  • Nostalgia (1950s, 1980s, etc.)
  • Car Culture and the Pin-up Model
  • Cruising (History, traditions, rituals)
  • Cars and Music (“Little Deuce Coupe” – The Beach Boys, “Drive My Car” – The Beatles, “Little Red Corvette” – Prince…)
  • TV and Car Shows (Discovery Channel’s Loud and Fast and Jesse James: Outlaw Garage …)
  • Economic and/or Industrial Future of Car Manufacturing
  • “Auto-pilot” vs. Self-Driving – Driving Experiences in the Future
  • Famous Film Cars or road movies
  • Fashion – Motorcycle / Car Inspired Apparel
  • Strong Female Characters ( For example, Imperator Furiosa from Mad Max: Fury Road)
  • Famous vehicles such as the semi-truck from Maximum Overdrive (1986), “Christine” from Stephen King’s film, or Dragula from the TV Series The Munsters
  • documentaries and/or travelogues
  • videogames, graphic novels, fiction, radio, art
  • car or motorcycle commercials
  • car or motorcycle history (models and styles, classic and modern, the industry)
  • lowriders, hot rods, custom cars/choppers and racial/ethnic, class, or gender identity
  • car / biker shows: Sturgis, South Dakota (local) or Yokohama Mooneyes, Japan (global)
  • histories of roads, routes, highways, traffic
  • GPS, Google Maps, automobility
  • Route 66 and roadside architecture
  • Nation and/ or citizenship, region, locality
  • advertising, symbols, propaganda
  • borders, real and imagined
  • The road and post-apocalyptic landscapes / “The road to nowhere”
  • Environmental impacts and ecological issues
  • Popular automobile robots like the Transformers or the Jaegers (Pacific Rim)
  • Representations of the motorized robot in anime or manga

Deadline for proposal submissions has been extended to November 15, 2016.

Conference website for proposal submissions is http://conference2017.southwestpca.org/

Contact: Dr. Stacy Rusnak, Associate Professor of Film, Georgia Gwinnett College, srusnak@ggc.edu