Crossing Boundaries in Literature, Theory, and Culture

deadline for submissions: 
January 24, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Purdue University Literature, Theory, and Culture Graduate Program
contact email: 

Graduate students in the Literature, Theory, and Cultural Studies program at Purdue University invite participation in their first annual symposium, “Crossing Boundaries in Literature, Theory, and Culture.” Boundaries represent real or imagined limits within various cultures, and negotiation of these boundaries enables innovation, transgression, as well as social, ethical, or political implications. Literature and other cultural artifacts work to challenge, straddle, or even reinforce boundaries, from national borders to the artificial limits scholars construct between time periods or fields of study. This symposium will investigate and encourage boundary crossings in literature, culture, and language in the broadest sense.

We invite paper proposals on crossing boundaries in literary studies, cultural studies, rhetoric and composition, film, creative writing, American studies, comparative literature, and other related fields. Specific topics for this symposium may include interpretation and adaption of medieval texts or concepts over time, the trans-locality of the Black Atlantic, approaches in science studies that cross lines between science and the humanities, challenges to perceived boundaries of gender and sexuality, and so forth. General topics include but are not limited to . . .  


  • Comparative literature
  • Concepts across time periods and/or disciplines
  • Critical Race Theory
  • Disability Studies
  • Gender and Queer studies
  • Generic experimentation and/or the avant-garde
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Intertextuality
  • Liminality and/or alterity
  • Medievalism and/or Neo-Victorianism
  • Migration Studies, Diaspora Studies, and/or Border Studies
  • Misappropriation
  • Multilingual literatures
  • Reception, adaptation, remediation, and/or fandom
  • Transgression and/or taboo
  • Translation Studies
  • Transnational literature and culture
  • Video Game Studies and Media Studies


We will also consider proposals unrelated to the symposium theme.

This symposium will take place at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana on March 27 and 28, 2020. The keynote speaker for this event will be Dr. Richard Sévère, an associate professor of English at Valparaiso University specializing in gender and sexuality in medieval literature as well as social justice.

We accept proposals in the following formats:

-          an individual paper presentation

-          a pre-constituted panel of 3-4 papers

-          a pre-constituted round table

-          a workshop related to the conference theme

-          a reading of relevant creative work

Please send abstract proposals of up to 250 words in length to The deadline for submissions is January 24, 2020. Our conference website is