New Narratives of 9/11 - SAMLA 2014 - Nov. 7-9

full name / name of organization: 
Arin Keeble
contact email: 


Conference Papers / Edited Collection of Essays

SAMLA's third special session on the literary representation of 9/11 is seeking quality papers on "new" narratives of the attacks in literature, film, and television. 9/11 continues to resonate acutely and the body of narrative texts which explore the impact of the attacks continues to grow.
We are interested in essays on texts which move beyond the dominant paradigms of many of the early texts, such as trauma and domestic crisis. However, we are also interested in papers that acknowledge the limitations of critical accounts by scholars who have demanded a more politicized or trans-national approach to 9/11. Catherine Morley has expressed concern that fiction is seen here as simply a "political tool, through which writers can understand (and educate readers about) the United States' place in the world." This session seeks papers that cut through this polarization between trauma and politics exploring new paradigms of representation and new modes of analysis. Newer works such as HBO's Homeland have more of a reflective distance from the initial shocks and trauma of the attacks, but have much to say about their continued resonance in domestic and political spheres. Other works, such as Amy Waldman's The Submission (2011) and Thomas Pynchon's Bleeding Edge (2013) historicize the attacks, reflecting on the immediate months and years after. How, we are asking, has our understanding of 9/11 evolved in over a decade since the first narrative responses were produced. Subjects for consideration might include (but are not restricted to):

• New narratives of 9/11
• The historicizing of 9/11
• The polarization of trauma and politics in criticism of the 9/11 novel
• New paradigms for the 9/11 narrative
• Narratives of 9/11 and conspiracy or paranoia
• Representations of The War on Terror
• Globalization and Terror after 9/11
• Representations of Arabs/Muslims after 9/11
• 9/11 and global terror in Eastern literatures
• Allegories of 9/11 and The War on Terror

*** Additionally, there is a co-edited collection currently under contract, based on this special session. The editors are seeking two more chapters to complete a very strong collection.

Please send 300 word abstracts and any expressions of interest in the conference and/or the collection to
Abstracts are due by June 10, 2014.