Beyond the Body: Explorations in posthumanism and transhumanism

deadline for submissions: 
February 3, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Society of Akron Graduate English Scholars - University of Akron
contact email: 



Explorations in Post-humanism and Trans-humanism

SAGES Fifth Annual Interdisciplinary Student Conference

The University of Akron

Student Union

March 16, 2017


The Society of Akron Graduate English Scholars is pleased to announce a call for papers for its upcoming conference on March 16, 2017.  We welcome creative writers and scholars from various disciplines to discuss the theme, “Beyond the Body.” This free conference is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. We are honored to announce that our Keynote speaker will be Dr. Todd Comer, Professor of Engish at Defiance College. Comer’s work merges the insights of postmodern theory, ecocriticism, disability studies, and postcolonial studies. Comer has edited three books focused on Alan Moore, terror and cinema, and OWS politics; he is currently writing a book-long ecological analysis of the films of Peter Weir (Bloomsbury). His other incipient book, Birth and the Mourning After: Contemporary Fiction and Film, argues for birth as the dominant fact of our existence, as that state within which the posthuman dwells.


Portrayals of the future in modern society can create extreme anxiety. The future is depicted as a dystopian, post-apocalyptic clash between humans and machine.  However, there is also the idea that humans and machines can work in conjunction with one another, and with nature, and avoid narratives of complete annihilation. This realm of science and technology has led to increased emphasis on ideas of the post-human, which look to blur boundaries between the body and the machine.


This year we are seeking a variety of interpretations of “Beyond the Body” and the connections between nature, man, and machine. We are open to all academic disciplines in an effort to explore connections between dissimilar fields and cultural spaces.


Possible topics that can be explored but are not restricted to:

    The Cyborg

    Artificial Intelligence and robotics

    The human condition; notions of human nature

    Ethical implications for post-humanism

    Deconstruction (and reconstruction) of the human body

    Futures without humans

    Animal and plant bodies

    Ecology, environment, and the natural sciences

    Biomedical engineering, medicine, technology

    Literary depictions of transhumanism, post-humanism, or the cyborg.

    Questions of gender, race, class etc.


The above list is simply a loose guideline of suggested topics. Please, feel free to explore your own interpretations of “Beyond the Body”.



We seek submissions from all disciplines. Submit individual abstracts (no more than 400 words) directly to SAGES by February 3, 2017 via email ( Those abstracts that are selected will be organized into specific panels to be presented at the conference. Expect responses in mid-February 2017. All creative writing manuscripts need to be submitted in their entirety. Presentation proposals (no more than 400 words) and creative writing manuscripts are to be submitted directly to SAGES via email ( by February 3, 2017.