Assemblages of Empire : an American Studies Symposium

deadline for submissions: 
December 31, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Department of American Studies, University of Texas, Austin

Assemblages of Empire : an American Studies Symposium

Hosted by Graduate Students in the Department of American Studies

The University of Texas, Austin

March 4-5, 2020

From Octavia Butler’s Anyanwu shifting between bodies, gender, and species in antebellum Louisiana to Jasbir Puar’s discourses on “assemblages,” “America” does not fit easily into a single, definable category. Conversations in American humanities, sciences, and culture frequently center around this lack of a singular “box” in which to fit the vastness of American Studies research. Similarly, the far-reaching and frequently violent impact of American Empire is expansive and likewise not easily contained. This American Studies symposium hopes to examine the shifting, daunting, and changeable “borders” of American Studies through a range of interdisciplinary research. 

Rooted in American Studies, this conference invites projects from a range of disciplines and methods that take up questions of American “assemblages,” which should be broadly and creatively interpreted. We are looking for papers, roundtable discussions, and projects that specifically examine such innovative questions, particularly from Black studies, Asian American Studies, Pacific Studies, Indigenous Studies, Latin American Studies, Latino/Chicano/a/x studies, critical disability studies, women’s and gender studies, and LGBTQIA+ studies perspectives. Similarly, projects that examine interdisciplinary topics such as food studies, speculative fiction and nonfiction, sound studies, performance studies, environmental humanities would be enthusiastically welcome. 


We likewise encourage non-traditional research, including visual and performing art, comics, photographs, creative nonfiction, social justice projects, recipes, films, sound recordings, etc.

Due to the uncertainty of COVID 19 and in a spirit of accessibility, this conference will be an entirely digital event. Disability, income, and other factors that might inhibit in-person travel to Austin will in no way prevent or hinder equitable participation. 

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words for papers, roundtables, or projects*, a 1-2 page CV, and any necessary accommodations to utamsconference@gmail.comno later than December 31, 2020. If you are proposing a roundtable or a paper/project with multiple collaborators, please send all collaborators’ names and CVs in the same email.