EVENT Apr 03
Abstract days left 0
Viewed 647 times

Phantasmic Binds: Culture as Poltergeist

New Brunswick, New Jersey
Organization: Rutgers University Program in Comparative Literature
Categories: Postcolonial, Digital Humanities, Graduate Conference, American, Hispanic & Latino, Comparative, Interdisciplinary, British, Lingustics, German, Genre & Form, Popular Culture, Gender & Sexuality, Literary Theory, Women's Studies, World Literatures, African-American, Colonial, Revolution & Early National, Transcendentalists, 1865-1914, 20th & 21st Century, Medieval, Early Modern & Renaissance, Long 18th Century, Romantics, Victorian, 20th & 21st Century, Adventure & Travel Writing, Children's Literature, Comics & Graphic Novels, Drama, Narratology, Poetry, Aesthetics, Anthropology/Sociology, Classical Studies, Cultural Studies, Environmental Studies, Film, TV, & Media, Food Studies, History, Philosophy, African & African Diasporas, Asian & Asian Diasporas, Australian Literature, Canadian Literature, Caribbean & Caribbean Diasporas, Indian Subcontinent, Eastern European, Mediterranean, Middle East, Native American, Scandinavian, Pacific Literature, Miscellaneous
Event Date: 2020-04-03 to 2020-04-04 Abstract Due: 2020-01-15


Rutgers University Program in Comparative Literature 

Biennial Graduate Student Conference

April 3-4, 2020

Keynote: Professor Lydia Liu, Columbia University

How can language, often thought to be incorporeal, twist and tie up our lived realities? How does cultural production reach across this ontological chasm with surprising, and sometimes even shocking, results? In this impasse, words function as overdetermined phantasms of a culture that orient how we articulate and recognise our aspirations, affections, ambivalence, and antipathy. In this social matrix, words—and by implication, language—are imagined as cultural specters: as ahistorical poltergeistic entities that reinforce a predictable present. 

Grappling with the implications of these cultural complexities, the biennial graduate student conference at the Rutgers University Program in Comparative Literature invites responses that meditate on the instability of language and how it acts as a phantasm that shifts our collective culture, in ways both generative and deleterious. In this conference, we want to explore language’s vitality to our understanding of the porous divide between the public and the private/personal, between human and non-human. How does language figure in facilitating the discursive, political and lived landscape(s) we are subject to? What are the limits and possibilities of language, the duplicities of language and the permissibilities of classification, taxonomy, and the nomenclatures that enable or disrupt experiences of cultural, material, physical, and social displacement? How does the transience of language function across time, space, and borders—including those borders it helps to create—and what is the role of literary and/or interdisciplinary studies in probing these functions? 

We invite Graduate students who are interested in presenting at the conference, either through research papers, creative nonfiction essays, fiction/short stories, poetry, or performance, to submit an abstract of 300 words that address these questions.

Possible paper topics include, but are not limited to:

Translation and communication across borders
Multilingualism and/or translingualism 
Identity, memory, trauma, and mourning
Nonce words and shifting meanings/definitions
Silences in cultural production  
Spectral pasts and/or speculative futures 
Anti-colonial/decolonial tongues; linguistic and geopolitical borders 
Artificial intelligence and posthumanism
The environmental imagination and the language of climate change  
Gender and sexuality discourses 
Hauntology, ghosts, and genre discourses 

The deadline for paper proposals is 11:59 PM on January 15th, 2020. Please submit all proposals through this form. All submissions should include the title of the paper, the abstract, and the name, affiliation, and email of the author.

More details about the conference can be found on the conference website: https://phantasmicbinds.wixsite.com/conference. Questions can be emailed to rucomplit2020@gmail.com.






Rutgers Comparative Literature