Beyond Borders, Walls, and Binaries: Creating Inclusive Classroom Spaces

deadline for submissions: 
October 1, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Society for the Study of Southern Literature's Emerging Scholars Organization
contact email: 

Panel Proposal for the SSSL Biennial Conference in Fayatteville, AR (February 20-23, 2020)

Sponsored by the Society for the Study of Southern Literature’s Emerging Scholars Organization

Chair: Elizabeth Gardner, Louisiana State University 

In a time when discussions about borders and walls permeate political and social commentary and focus on exclusion, the Emerging Scholars Organization is interested in how instructors of southern studies create inclusive spaces in their classrooms and beyond. To that end, we seek contributions for a roundtable discussion about approaches to teaching that identify and overcome boundaries to student learning or to push beyond the borders of the traditional classroom. We are especially interested in abstracts that engage the following ideas: 

  • Anti-racist pedagogy

  • Moving beyond the borders of southern studies

    • E.g. how to engage ideas from southern studies in other kinds of courses (such as African American studies; Women's, Gender, and Sexuality studies; and introductory composition courses) or how we might engage with ideas from other disciplines in southern literature classrooms

  • Service-Learning or project-oriented courses that emphasize community engagement

  • Course design that engages with  public scholarship and / or public monuments (such as the National Memorial for Peace and Justice)

We welcome short presentations on any aspect of course design: choosing a theme, composing the syllabus, selecting reading materials, constructing lesson plans, or creating assignments. We also welcome short presentations on teaching philosophies and pedagogical theory. The goal of this panel is to generate ideas and disperse materials that will aid participants in planning introductory and interdisciplinary courses that are engaging to the undergraduate students who take them and interesting to the instructors who teach them. 

Please submit 250-word abstracts to Elizabeth Gardner ( by October 1 for full consideration.