2 CfPs for NeMLA Convention, March 5-8, 2020, Boston, MA

deadline for submissions: 
September 30, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Kathryn Bastin (Eckerd College) & Erin Myers (Indiana University)
contact email: 

Dear Colleagues,It is with great pleasure that we announce two sessions for NeMLA’s 51st Annual Convention to be held in Boston, MA on March 5-8, 2020. Please find the CfPs below; abstracts may be submitted by September 30, 2019 via the links provided. Feel free to disseminate this invitation and send any questions to the organizers Erin Myers and Kate Bastin (erin.a.myers@gmail.com and bastink@eckerd.edu). Thank you for your consideration!


Vegetative/Meditative States and Other Lessons from Plants in Early Modern Literature and Culture (Seminar)


In the Age of the Anthropocene, it is often hard to look away from the human, yet it is vital that we turn our attention to the world around us. American nature essayist Annie Dillard wrote, “I suspect that the real moral thinkers end up, wherever they may start, in botany” (Pilgrim at Tinker Creek). Our seminar, “Animal, Vegetable, Mineral: Thinking with the Non-Human in Old Regime French Literature” for NeMLA 2019 in Washington, DC drew our attention to the non-human in a French context. Our seminar this year urges participants interested in Plant Studies in an early-modern context to consider plants and their roles in European cultures during this time period. Possible areas of inquiry include, but are not limited to:

  • Herbal treatises and manuscripts

  • Plant taxonomy and botanical philosophy

  • Medicinal properties of plants and plant lore

  • Herbs and plants used for childbearing and postpartum purposes

  • Plants in literature or visual art

  • Food Studies and plants

  • Garden Studies

  • Book Studies and plants

  • Critical plant studies and/or ecocriticism

  • Colonial botany

  • Cabinets of curiosity, herbaria and botanical gardens

  • Horticulture & wonder

  • Plant-human crossroads/hybridity

  • Early-modern forestry

We welcome papers in English since we hope to cultivate exchange across geographic borders and disciplines. This seminar will be conducted by reading pre-circulated papers of 10 pages or fewer; each participant will be assigned to closely read another participant’s article, introduce it, generate some thoughtful questions, and moderate discussion. In this way, we hope to delve into the world of plants and draw out rich connections and divergences between papers. Please submit an abstract of 250 words or fewer directly through the NeMLA website by September 30, 2019.


You may submit your abstract directly through the NeMLA portal here: https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/CFP


         Motherhood in the Academy II: Policy Roundtable


We enjoyed fantastic discussion at the 50th NeMLA Convention during our roundtable, “Motherhood in the Academy.” In response to a suggestion by the Women’s and Gender Studies Caucus to focus on policy for our next roundtable on Motherhood in the Academy, we invite you to join us for a presentation by two experts who combine research and experience in changing campus culture through pro-family policy. They will discuss ways to amend university/college policies so that the structure of academic labor clearly and effectively supports parents and family life in all ranks and divisions: faculty, staff, administrators and students. After the presentation, they will assist in a break-out session of groups of 2-3 people tasked with discussing current policies and brainstorming ways to promote parenthood on campus. We invite you to contact us with any questions regarding this roundtable: Erin Myers (erin.a.myers@gmail.com) and Kate Bastin (bastink@eckerd.com).


You may submit your abstract directly through the NeMLA portal here: https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/S/18111


September 30, 2019: Abstracts due via NeMLA portal

October 15, 2019: Applicants will be notified of acceptance status

March 5-8, 2020: NeMLA Convention in Boston, MA (http://www.buffalo.edu/nemla.html)

Warm regards,


Erin Myers and Kate Bastin



Erin Myers is a free agent in French Literature, having received her PhD in October 2018. The publication of her chapter on teaching the French Revolution through celebration in an MLA pedagogical volume is forthcoming, and she is turning her focus to a book article on science and the novel in France, 1800-1830.

Kate Bastin is an Assistant Professor of French at Eckerd College. Her teaching and research interests include French language and culture, early modern French literature, women’s writing, animal studies, and birth and maternity in Old Regime France. Her current book project is on the simian in Old Regime France.