Beyond the Scope

deadline for submissions: 
December 4, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Comparative Literature IntraStudent Faculty Forum (CLIFF) 2018
contact email: 

Call for Papers


Beyond the Scope

22nd Annual CLIFF Conference

University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Department of Comparative Literature

March 16-17, 2018

Keynote Speaker: Professor Cristina Rivera Garza


Submission Deadline: December 4, 2017


The theme of this conference, Beyond the Scope, was born out of the following consideration: how does the current form of ascendant neoliberalism prescribe boundaries to our understanding of the world, literature and cultural exchange? What limits are generated by this globalized framework and how can we begin to think through, past and over them? Scholars in literary and cultural studies, such as Cristina Rivera Garza, Lisa Lowe and Seyla Benhabib, have engaged with these questions, generating an ethical critique of writing in the neoliberal age.


Yet, this conference, devoted to exploring methodologies that confront dogmatic or hegemonic boundaries, is not wholly limited to the theme of globalization or neoliberalism. In addition, we invite a wide variety of scholars to consider the following questions: what topics in your research are currently limited by a certain scope, what new methodologies might shift that perception, and what is the task of scholars working today in thinking through these challenges?


Professor Cristina Rivera Garza is the Distinguished Professor in Hispanic Studies at the University of Houston. Situated at the intersection of literature, literary theory, history, and creative writing, many of Rivera Garza’s recent publications (Los muertos indóciles: Necroescrituras y desapropiación, 2013) directly address the connections between writing, subjectivity, and community-based literary projects in the neoliberal age. Rivera Garza’s work in the past has also focused on the history of mental illness in 20th century Mexico. Her recent literary publications include La imaginación pública (2015) and Nadie me verá llorar (2014). Her work has been translated into several languages (English, Portuguese, German, Italian, and Korean among others). She has won the International Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz prize twice for her creative work. In addition to delivering the keynote address, Prof. Rivera Garza will be doing a reading from the recently published English translation of her novel, La cresta de Ilión (trans. The Iliac Crest).


Suggested papers may address the following topics and themes:

  • Nationalism, Transnationalism, and Cosmopolitanism

  • Identities: Race, Gender, Sexuality, (Dis)ability

  • Exile and Migration

  • Mapping, Networks, and Connectivity

  • Organization of Information and Knowledge

  • Translation and Literary Exchange

  • Borders

  • Traversals and Travel

  • Intertextuality, Interdiscursivity and Inter-generic exchanges

  • National Literary Traditions and Methodologies

  • Neoliberalism - Resource Extraction

  • Exchange, Debt, Transaction

  • Appropriation/Disappropriation

  • Limits of Perception, Shifts of Perspective, Framing

  • Experimentalism

  • Animal Studies, Posthumanism, Ecocriticism

  • Affect

  • Discourses (Hidden or otherwise)

  • Biopolitics and Necropolitcs


We invite papers in Comparative Literature and across the humanities that address the concerns outlined above. Paper proposals of no more than 250 words may be submitted to by December 4, 2017.