Cormac McCarthy: Insecure Passages, Insecure Passengers

deadline for submissions: 
August 21, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
Jay Ingrao and Justin Brumit / SAMLA 95
contact email: 

Cormac McCarthy: Insecure Passages, Insecure Passengers (SAMLA 95 - Atlanta, Georgia)

Throughout his legendary career, Cormac McCarthy has dealt with existential insecurities at all levels of human experience.  This panel proposes to foster dialogue about this theme in McCarthy’s work.  Abstracts dealing with any of McCarthy works are welcome for consideration, but we do seek a special focus on McCarthy’s last two published novels: The Passenger and Stella Maris.  Please send a 250-word abstract, a brief bio or CV, and any A/V or scheduling requests to Jay Ingrao ( and Justin Brumit ( by August 21st.


(In)Security: The Future of Literature and Language Studies
Thursday, November 9 to Saturday, November 11, 2023
Atlanta Marriott Buckhead Hotel & Conference Center
Atlanta, Georgia

The 2020s might be called the Age of Insecurity. Barely recovering from the coronavirus pandemic and suffering its social, psychological, and economic consequences, and living in fear of environmental catastrophe and nuclear war, twenty-first-century humanity has little reason to feel secure. Increasingly powerful surveillance regimes facilitated by the ongoing digital revolution only heighten the sense of insecurity and related affective states such as paranoia and entrapment. In U.S. institutions of higher learning, scholars and students of literature and language face new threats to their livelihoods precipitated by politically motivated assaults on tenure and, by implication, academic freedom. What is the future of the humanities in such circumstances? Is it to be one of gradual (or accelerated) obsolescence? What alternative futures might be imagined for the study of literature and language? For creative writing? For the teaching of rhetoric and composition? Is it possible to envisage – and create and sustain – new sorts of security without lapsing into complacency? Might intimations of insecurity be reimagined as useful or generative for scholarship and teaching in the humanities? How might thinking about in/security enhance the way we read texts and watch films? What new reading or viewing practices might come into being?