MLA 2022: Ends of Satire

deadline for submissions: 
March 15, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
Maggie Hennefeld / University of Minnesota
contact email: 

Satire is dead: long live satire. How can political comedy retain its critical edge when reality is more absurd than even its burlesque depiction? What media and literary satire emerge in the interregnum between old and new worlds?

Papers may engage with a range of the following topics/fields:

--Satire and its relation to fake news, truthiness, and viral conspiracy theories

--Satire and media form-- film, TV, social media, video games, podcasts, stand-up, improv, media platforms, etc. (focusing on the dynamic or dialectic between media form & satirical content)

--Satire and intersectional identity-- feminist/queer/trans & BIPOC politics of how satirical modes help navigate identity in a world contradictorily driven by global social justice uprisings and racist heteropatriarchal tyranny

--Satire and its relation to disability scholarship/activism & mental health representation

--Satire and class-- when/where/how does satire engage with class inequity and anti-capitalist critique?

--Satire and critical thought-- exploring scholarly traditions and approaches to analyzing satire (e.g., philosophy, psychoanalysis, Marxism) and their relation to 21st century film, media, & literary sub-fields

--Satire and climate catastrophe (too soon? too late?)

--Satire and communication-- exploring mediality, language/translation, regionality, vernacular culture, etc.

--Satire and geopolitics-- anti-colonialism, diaspora, war, state violence, immigration

Call for Papers for a panel at the Modern Language Association (MLA) Annual Convention, January 6-9, 2022 in Washington DC. Please send 250-word abstracts and bios by March 15, 2021 to Maggie Hennefeld ( and Sam Chesters ( Responses to individual submissions will be sent out by late March. All prospective presenters must be current MLA members by no later than April 2021.