Survivance Environments- Graduate Literature Organization Conference 2023

deadline for submissions: 
February 12, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
Graduate Literature Organization (GLO) at Florida State University
contact email: 

Survivance Environments: GLO Conference 2023

March 10-11, Florida State University, Tallahassee Florida

Organized by: GLO [Graduate Literature Organization] at Florida State University

Florida is often synonymous with beaches, resorts, retirement communities, NASA and all things Disney; in other words, the “Sunshine State” is often considered a vacation state, place of leisure, and harbor from the cold. Florida may indeed be a place of otherworldly imaginaries, but for many it is also a place of suppressed histories as these resorts and communities occupy spaces repossessed and gentrified for the pursuit of escapist entertainment. Often forgotten in the spectacle, ongoing gentrification politics have continued displacing communities and ecologies across the state on top of a long history of plantation- , H-2A contract-, and carceral labor.

While these developments seem particularly visceral in Florida, they also speak to broader matters of concern and developments in the age of globalized capital and labor exploitation. In the face of this violence, practices of survivance emerge. In Native Liberty: Natural Reason and Cultural Survivance, Gerald Vizenor writes: “The nature of survivance creates a sense of narrative resistance to absence, literary tragedy, nihility, and victimry” (1). Since survivance as a theoretical concept is “elusive and imprecise by definition” it lends itself to application in multiple geographies.

Thus, for Derrida in “Living on: Border Lines,” “survivance” emphasizes that every presence is made possible and haunted by an absence. While survivance is a broader spectral presence for Derrida, for Vizenor it is a motion that can be actively and affirmatively channeled for a critique of the status quo through subalternity. In naming this conference “Survivance Environments,” we draw from the work of both critics to think beyond the constraints of capitalism and beyond linear temporalities. While we acknowledge the theoretical heritage of the term, we encourage writers and artists to expand this working concept to include the stories and practices of  marginalized and disenfranchised peoples living in precarity. For our conference, we invite papers, performances, and creative projects that consider national and global practices of survivance. We welcome abstracts that address (but are not limited to) the following topics:

  • Myth and Narrative

  • Biopower and Governance

  • Neoliberalization

  • Food Cultures

  • Environments 

  • Lived Experiences

  • Labor 

  • Institutions and State Apparatuses

Proposals should have a sufficient title and an abstract between 250-300 words. Abstracts, paper, performance, and project  titles should be emailed to on or before February, 12 2023. All submissions should contain the full name of the presenter, as well as institutional affiliation and a short 50-100 word bio. If you have any questions, please direct them to the same email address.

If accepted, the conference will be held at Florida State University from March 10-11, 2023

We acknowledge that Florida State University is located on land that is the ancestral and traditional territory of the Apalachee Nation, the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, the Miccosukee Tribe of Florida, and the Seminole Tribe of Florida. The seizure of those lands enabled the conditions for the enslavement of the thousands of Black folks who lived and labored on Leon County’s plantations.