Kurt Vonnegut Society at 2017 ALA in Boston

deadline for submissions: 
January 15, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
The Kurt Vonnegut Society

The Vonnegut Society will host two panels at the 2017 American Literature Association conference, which will be held at the Westin Copley Place in Boston on May 25-28.  Here is the Call for Papers for that conference.

Please submit proposals of 250 words to vonnegutsociety@gmail.com by January 15, 2017. Please indicate to which panel you are submitting in the subject line.

I.  Adapting/Performing/Framing Vonnegut: Film, Television, and Beyond in Context

One of the 20th century’s most energetic literary stylists, Kurt Vonnegut nonetheless persisted in his (at various times) admiration, excitement, and disappointment in the ways humans could undertake storytelling during his lifetime.  From his own more traditional stage productions and his works’ adaptations, to his own appearances in films, Vonnegut also played a role in the production and consumption of non-print works of narrative. This panel seeks papers that address any aspect of the performative nature of Vonnegut and his work. Possible options for engagement include the following:

  • Readings of any of KV’s works that have been adapted into film (Mother NightBreakfast of ChampionsSlaughterhouse-Five, etc.)
  • KV as actor, in cameo or otherwise (e.g. Back to SchoolNever Down)
  • KV and PBS
  • KV and the theatre (e.g. Happy Birthday, Wanda June)
  • KV and documentary (e.g. 1 Giant Leap)
  • Performativity in KV’s work
  • KV as public(ity) figure (on talk shows, in interviews, the news)
  • The performance of history and/or didacticism in KV’s work
  • KV’s aesthetics or ideas in non-Vonnegut film/TV/theatre
  • Comparisons of KV’s performances with those of his contemporaries
  • Conceptual approaches, such as KV’s supposed “unfilmability” or the role of science fiction
  • The role of media in the 20th century on KV’s literary output

Papers need not focus on the literary alone, and could place the author’s performative works in historical, social, or cultural context.  This panel welcomes as well media practitioners who want to critique or explore issues of craft in works made or in-progress.

II.  Open Topic

We also invite proposals on any other aspect of Vonnegut’s life or work.