Literary Border-Crossings (ACLA 2019 seminar)

deadline for submissions: 
September 20, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
American Comparative Literature Association
contact email: 

We are inviting paper submissions for the "Literary Border-Crossings" seminar at the ACLA convention (Washington, DC, 7-10 March 2019).

What is the place of the literary today and what kinds of displacements are actively transforming this mode of expression? Prompted by these simultaneously aesthetic and sociopolitical questions, this seminar provides a space for dialogue among scholars working with contemporary texts or cultural practices that reflect on the nature and mutations of the literary and its entanglements. Perhaps because of its porous borders and ability to distance the familiar, literature has long been a privileged medium for expressing alienation, dispossession, and exile. But the literary also generates its own modes of alterity, hybridity, and nomadism. In dislodging language, it destabilizes identity categories as much as the category of identity itself. We seek work that is concerned with literary border-crossings, exploring both tropes of dislocation and moments or places in a text when literary boundaries blur, dissolve, or bleed into other media and linguistic domains. We are interested as much in formal dislocations as in original thematic approaches. Possible paths of reflection include new media and modes of experimentation; intertextuality and cross-linguistic contamination; migrant narratives and spaces of transition; queer and posthuman subjectivities. How do contemporary border-crossing texts make visible certain aesthetic and political boundaries, norms, hierarchies and oppositions that are otherwise taken for granted? And what futures for literature do they point to now?

Deadline: September 20, 2018 at 9 a.m. EST. Please submit directly on the ACLA portal:

Co-organizers: Ioana Pribiag ( and Oana Sabo (