Masks and Masking (Hybrid Conference)

deadline for submissions: 
February 16, 2024
full name / name of organization: 
IUP English Graduate Organization
contact email: 

Masks have been used throughout history for many different purposes. Some use literal masks for entertainment and performance; some use them for cunning and disguise; others use figurative masks to hide their true identities from those around them. As we consider trends—and shifts in those trends—in literature, theory, criticism, and academia, we must analyze the utility of masks to determine why people have needed them and still need them.


IUP’s English Graduate Organization is proud to announce the 2024 EGO Spring Conference with the theme: Masks and Masking. For this conference, we will be utilizing the hybrid format (both in-person and via Zoom) to accommodate everyone and encourage those from outside of IUP to join us as well.


We encourage the submission of both scholarly and creative pieces as well as panels composed of interrelated work that deal with the topic of masks. Abstracts can cover:

-       Masks as physical disguise (from powerful enemies, rivals, romantic interests, etc).

-       Masks as cultural disguise (Could be seen in the form of code-switching or assimilation; being forced to adapt to a different culture under threat of poverty or ostracization).

-       Masks as displays of wealth and social prestige.

-       Masks as racial disguise.

-       Masks (literal and figurative) used to hide one’s sex from suitors or public officials (i.e. Shakespearean plays).

-       Masks as cultural traditions.

-       Social masks.

-       The mask of false emotions in literature to deceive.

-       Masks as replacements for socio-economic status.

-       Compositional masks (transforming home dialects into “proper” academic language, etc).

-       Masks used to shield an individual’s duality (inner and outer selves, personal and professional selves, etc.)

-       And so much more.

The conference will be held in the Jane Leonard Building as well as through zoom from April 12th-April 13th, 2024. Sunday, April 14th may be added and will be entirely virtual if we need more time for everyone’s presentations.

Please submit a 250-300 word abstract and a 50-word bio to and to by February 16th, 2024 to be considered for this conference.

If you have any additional questions, please email Ryan Mahokey, EGO President