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NeMLA 2024 - Troublesome Matters: Materiality through Literature, Film, and Comics (NeMLA)

Boston, MA
Organization: NeMLA
Event: NeMLA
Categories: Hispanic & Latino, Comparative, Aesthetics, Anthropology/Sociology, Cultural Studies, Environmental Studies, Film, TV, & Media, Philosophy
Event Date: 2024-03-07 to 2024-03-10 Abstract Due: 2023-09-30

This roundtable is being organized as part of NeMLA 2024, centered around the theme of SURPLUS.


We live in a world brimming with tangible entities. The material reality we are enmeshed in fascinates us yet also troubles, perplexes, and escapes us, in both phenomenological and discursive terms. Then again, what is our relationship with those physical objects? How does their existence inform and shape our understanding of the world? How do we approach their history, their dynamics, and their agency? While over the past decades, various disciplines have reinvigorated an interest in material and materiality, certain apparent disparities in their theoretical foundations have elicited different emphases and debates. For instance, one may argue that the new materialism efforts to decenter the human, thereby embracing a relational ontology, stands in strong tension with the focus of material culture studies on the human dimension. Divergences like these within contrasting approaches to matter, objects, and materiality have instigated the conception of this roundtable.

How can we contemplate different critical endeavors on materiality through literature, film, and comics? In turn, how does a revisited materialist analysis offer new possibilities to study literature, film, and comics – especially in relation to their immaterial aspects like language and emotion? We also seek to examine materiality in the forms of surplus, waste, or secretion, namely, things that are often overlooked, forgotten and even despised, and how they can be connected to larger networks of production, circulation, and consumption. This roundtable invitation is directed towards scholars with expertise in Latin American studies to consider the question of materiality in relation to the region’s geopolitical, cultural, and ecological conditions. However, we also warmly welcome scholars from diverse backgrounds to join us for a richer and more varied conversation around these matters.


55th NeMLA Annual Convention will be held in Boston, MA on March 7-10, 2024.
Please submit a 200-300 word abstract and a short bio. Abstracts accepted now through Sep 30, 2023.

Abstracts must be submitted through the NeMLA online portal: https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/CFP

For more information on submitting an abstract online, see https://www.buffalo.edu/nemla/convention.html

For questions about the roundtable, please contact Lu Han (lh664@cornell.edu)/Federico Giordano Perla (fg287@cornell.edu).



Federico Giordano Perla