CPF PAMLA Conference, 2014 Special Session: "That Old Black Magic": Temporality of Magic

full name / name of organization: 
Sören Fröhlich / University of California, San Diego
contact email: 

Recent scholarship in the 'temporal turn' has raised fundamental questions in the intersection of time and cultural representations (). However, this scholarship frequently side-steps cultural representations of time as malleable and non-rational, as well as supernatural temporalities. Thinking alongside the 2014 PAMLA Conference theme "Familiar Spirits," this panel invites papers that consider the relation between magic and time.

What happens when we consider that at once relative and all-pervasive dimension of time through the lens of the imagination, the cultural, and the irrational? Whose time is it that counts, and how can it be manipulated? This panel invites discussions of time in representation of magic including, but not limited to literature, art, film, and history.

Topics might consider questions like:

Is there a connection between legacies of racism, sexism, or gender discrimination and time?
Does time differ in the conception of magic across disciplines?
How do religious and magical notions of time cooperate or clash?
Can temporal changes associated with trauma and anxieties be represented through magic?
How are nostalgia and magic related temporally?
What characterizes magic temporality or the temporality of magic?
Which questions about time does the historiography of magic offer?
How can narrative dimensions of time be manipulated to convey a sense of magic?
How do magical manipulations of time relate to retrospective or futuristic projections?
Can time be the different between good and bad magic?

To submit, please follow the directions on


Note: PAMLA proposals cannot be submitted by email. In order to fill out a paper proposal, proposers simply:
1. register at and log in to the PAMLA clearinghouse form at http://www.pamla.org/2014,
2. fill out a paper proposal, including a paper title, a brief abstract and long proposal (max. 50 and 500 words, respectively), and
3. indicate whether the use of a laptop connected to a projector is needed.

For further detail on the proposal submission procedure, please visit:
or email: Sören Fröhlich, University of California, San Diego (sfrohlic@ucsd.edu).