Corrosions of Justice: Addressing Water Pollution and (Mis)management

deadline for submissions: 
November 15, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
Association for Studies in Literature and the Environment (ASLE), Detroit, 2017
contact email: 

Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment Biennial Conference - Detroit, MI June 21-24,2017

Recent studies have shown that the world’s freshwater supply is being used faster than it is being replenished. Dwindling water resources have been compounded by recent and ongoing events such as the lead-contaminated water supply in Flint, Michigan; once-in-a-millennium droughts in the southwestern United States and central India; the increased privatization of water; as well as socio-environmental tragedies due to industrial malpractices causing extreme pollution on rivers such as the Animas in Colorado and Rio Doce in Brazil. These environmental disasters affect poor and marginalized communities most in the form of what Rob Nixon has called “slow violence,” a form of environmental catastrophe that unfolds over time and often goes undetected or ignored by spectacle-driven media. Such crises expose the corrosion of water/environmental management systems and well as of legislative structures and their implementation, and often result in the corrosion of trust of the affected communities and those concerned with the wellbeing of the environment. This panel seeks papers exploring the ways in which literature, film, and the arts work to materialize the hidden effects of water crises, uncover the (mal)practices and (mis)management leading to them, and/or propose alternative, non-corrosive ways of interacting with the liquid element. We welcome perspectives on drought, flooding, access to water sources, privatization, public health and contamination, and more.

We are seeking 2-3 participants to form a preformed panel. Deadline for panel proposal submission is mid-December. Please submit abstracts of 300 words or less by November 15, 2016 for consideration. We will notify you by December 1 as to whether we'll be including your abstract in our panel proposal.