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Welcome to the official blog for Villanova's Graduate English Program! Come back often for updates on conference opportunities, guest speakers, student accomplishments, alumni news, and more. Also be sure to check out our Facebook page for more updates.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Call for Papers: "Formations," UMD English Graduate Conference

Formations: Intersections of Form Across the Literary, Social, and Political
11th Annual Graduate English Organization Conference
Department of English, University of Maryland, College Park,
March 10, 2018
“Forms... mean all shapes and configurations, all ordering principles, all patterns of repetition and difference,” writes Caroline Levine in Forms: Whole, Rhythm, Hierarchy, Network (Princeton University Press, 2015). Forms, understood broadly, are at work both within and beyond the realm of aesthetics; they configure and shape politics, culture, and social interactions; they include hierarchies, patterns, dichotomies, containers, and webs. How, then, do the plurality of forms at work in any given context interact, overlap, and influence each other?

We envision “Formations” as an exploration of the myriad and overlapping forms that govern experience and interpretation​, as well as an inquiry into the action of forming. It is action, after all, that BeyoncĂ© implies with her rallying call, “now let’s get in formation,” at the conclusion of Lemonade. There, we are confronted with a collision of the aesthetic, the political, and the social. How do aesthetic formations subvert, reinforce, echo, and fight against social or political formations? By examining actions of forming, re-forming, and deforming, “Formations” attends to the practices of inclusion and exclusion through which forms are marked and maintained.

In addition to critical presentations, we welcome collaborative projects and creative work in fiction, poetry, drama, dance, arts, and film. Topics of potential essays can include, but are not limited to:
  • How sociopolitical constructions of race, gender, sexuality, and class interact with each other and with aesthetic form
  • How political, social, and literary forms enter and shape one another
  • Material forms and perception of them
  • How entrenched forms exclude and create Others, particularly in relation to questions of (dis)ability, privilege, and morality
  • The persistence, subversion, or reinvention of form in popular culture, protest, social media, and other contexts both literary and beyond
  • Technology’s impact on how we perceive and apply aesthetic forms, patterns, and hierarchies
  • Forming academic writing, language(s), and classrooms
  • Temporal and geographical divisions between areas of literary study
  • Points of (dis)connection between creative and critical work
  • Form in the materiality of texts and their production
  • Historical or geopolitical formations of nations, regions, and communities
  • The ways that forms travel across different media, including visual art, sound, film, etc.
  • The development and application of linguistic and rhetorical forms
  • The body and its representation
  • Institutional organization and the formation of academic disciplines
Please submit proposals for fifteen-minute presentations. Panel submissions (three presentations per panel) are highly encouraged, as are other collaborative projects. Proposals for papers or panels should be 300-word abstracts. Proposals for creative work should be a short sample from an original composition or a description of the intended work. Please include your full name and email address.

Abstracts are due December 11 and should be e-mailed to conference.geo@gmail.com.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. And remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Call for Papers: Nexus 2018 Interdisciplinary Conference

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, welcomes proposals for presentations at Nexus 2018, our 8th biennial interdisciplinary conference, related to the theme of Agency and Artificiality: Assembling Humanity in the 21st Century. The conference dates will be March 1 - March 3, and submissions are open to faculty and graduate students.

We invite papers on the broad topics of humanity in an era of immense technological innovation and global interconnectedness. We are particularly interested in examining connections between the Humanities, Fine Arts, Social Sciences, and Sciences that establish new meanings for society. This conference aims to bring together scholars, creative writers, and educators from a broad range of disciplines in order to generate meaningful research and conversation about what it means to act and to be human in a predominantly digital age. We also hope to foster discussion about ever-shifting cultural narratives that shape increasingly pluralist societies, especially how these societies have been imagined and, more importantly, ethically enacted across the disciplines. For your proposal, you might consider any of the following themes:
  • Connections between agency, ecocriticism, environmentalism, affect studies, and object-oriented ontology
  • Constructions of communities, either human-made or natural, as seen from the position of unified physics or other fields
  • Cultural psychology, or actor-network theory
  • Humanism, posthumanism, and transhumanism
  • Methods of communication and learning, especially considering the advent of augmented reality (AR)
  • Artificial intelligence, and other bleeding-edge technologies
  • Collaboration and interdisciplinarity within and without academia through the use of sound, ethical methodologies
    The adaptation of digital technologies to academic work, especially with regard to the problems of audience, relevancy, and measurable impact in the non-academic world
    Creative works that consider non/human agency and/or artifice
Plenary Speakers
  • Sid Dobrin (University of Florida) will examine the connections between composition theory, pedagogy, and how writers react and respond to the environment
  • Timothy Grey (CUNY, Staten Island) will discuss the cultural construction of the human self by considering the relationships between literature, popular culture, and identity
  • Benjamin Gunsberg (Utah State University) will demonstrate how instructors can
  • integrate web-thinking into creative writing classrooms--broadening notions of creative
  • writing practice, its products, and practitioners' expertise.
Submissions for panels, individual papers, and roundtable discussions will be considered. In keeping with Nexus tradition, panels and papers not directly related to the conference are also welcome.

Please submit abstracts (~250 words) to utnexus@gmail.com by January 5th, 2018. Other questions? Please email utnexus@gmail.com.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. And remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Call for Papers:“Reformatting the World: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Technology and the Humanities”

Call for Papers:“Reformatting the World: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Technology and the Humanities” at York University.  Conference info: YorkU Humanities Graduate Conference, February 23-24, 2018.


The Graduate Program in Humanities and the Humanities Graduate Student Association (HuGSA) at York University are pleased to announce an interdisciplinary conference interrogating the critical role of technology, both past and present, in shaping human culture and society. Technology, in the broadest sense, has enriched our lives by opening up new vistas of knowledge about ourselves (or our selves) and the natural world. Digital technologies, for example, have made possible new, highly-advanced forms of social organization. They have also revolutionized almost every aspect of our lives, from travel, communication, entertainment, culture and the arts to food, medicine, education, politics, and science.

However, technology is also associated with the rise of technical rationality and a cold, calculating approach to the creation and application of technological innovation. From the industrial revolution to the development of the atomic bomb, politics in alliance with private interests have wreaked havoc on the environment, peoples and communities across the world, and threatens to alter or destroy the things we value the most. Where, for instance, is the place for privacy, freedom, spirituality, and other aspects of the human experience as we move forward in increasingly technologically administered bodies and societies? Are we destined to become slaves to our own creations, the “sex organs of the machine world,” as Marshall McLuhan predicted? Can humanism and morality withstand—or even make use of—technology for the genuine betterment of humankind?

Or, perhaps it is technology itself that must be rethought. What changes if we conceive of a technology as anything instrumental (a material, tool, text, medium, digital platform, etc.) and/or social (writing, discourse, institution, etc.) that exerts its own subtle pressure, penetrating deeply into in human experience or culture? What happens when our discourses of social/political/cultural technological “progress” are supplemented with that of “affordances” and “constraints?” In other words, can we attend to the stakes of technicity itself as an increasingly prominent (and often assumed) conceptual framework? How can such interdisciplinary approaches trace the real and imagined effects of a given technology across past and present human societies, and where do discourses and practices of technology and the humanities converge?
Panel themes and topics might include (but are not limited to):
  • Digital Humanities: collaboration, new perspectives and communicative technology
  • Technology and the Arts: literature, fine arts, music, film, theatre, sound, fashion, etc.
  • Human–Machine Interaction: cyborgs, the social and the technological,
  • Biotechnology and Biopolitics: policies, ethics and technologies of living organisms
  • Epistemologies: disciplines, divides and the production of knowledge
  • Media Studies: communication and culture, social impact of media
  • History and Philosophy of Technology: past and present perspectives
  • Profit and loss: Potentials of new technologies and what is made antiquated in turn
  • Prophets and the lost: how varieties of spirituality have adapted with/to technology
We welcome submissions from graduate students of any level, as well as early career researchers, from a wide cross-section of disciplines, fields and critical approaches, including (but not limited to) anthropology, art history, classics, communications and culture, comparative literature, critical theory, cultural memory, digital humanities, education, film studies, fine arts, futurism, historicism, history of science and technology, media studies, medical humanities, medicine, philosophy, popular cultural studies, religious studies, representation studies, sociology, translation studies, and women’s studies.

Submissions may take the form of 20-minute papers, or 12–15 minute roundtable papers in either English or French. Those wishing to participate are invited to submit a 250-word abstract to humaconference@gmail.com by 8 December, 2017. Submissions must be accompanied by 
·         the presenter’s name
·         institutional affiliation, program and level of study
·         e-mail address
·         tentative title
·         a short (150-word) bio
·         as well as an indication of whether any computing or electronic equipment (e.g., laptop, projector) is needed
We are also very pleased to welcome practitioners of digital technologies who wish to present their work. We are offering access to the Digital Media Studio in the York University School of the Arts, Media, and Performance & Design building in the evenings for post-panel workshops. This room is equipped with Oculus Rift and Vive virtual reality hardware and Unreal virtual reality software. For those wishing to organize such a session, please contact us with technology requirements. Other submissions, in the form of poster sessions, visual art, or performance, will also be considered.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. And remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)

Monday, October 23, 2017

Summer Research Fellowship

The competition for Graduate Summer Research Fellowships is now open. The deadline for applications is January 20, 2018 (regardless of which day of the week it falls on).

For details regarding eligibility requirements, criteria, how to apply, deadline for proposals and review process, faculty evaluation of the project, and award recipients, please visit the “Graduate Summer Research Fellowship” webpage found here.  Important note: please read the webpage in its entirety since the application process has changed.
 
Villanova University students cannot receive support to conduct research in countries under a Travel Warning from the U.S. Department of State.  In the event that a country is placed on a travel warning after funding has been awarded, students must communicate with the Office of Graduate Studies to cancel travel arrangements and return any funds that have been awarded.

If you have a scholarly project for which you would like summer support, please discuss this with a faculty member in the English department who will be willing to formally sponsor your effort.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Call for Papers: College at Brockport’s 4th Annual SEGUE (The Symposium for English Graduate Students)

Graduate students are invited to take part in the College at Brockport’s 4thAnnual SEGUE—The Symposium for English Graduate Students, which will take place on Saturday, February 24, 2018.

SEGUE is a gathering of MA and early Doctoral students; our aim is to create a collegial venue for graduate students to disseminate their work, hone their professional skills, and network with one another. More information can be found on Brokport's website.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. And remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)

Monday, October 16, 2017

Call for Papers: "Exploring Resistance through Medieval and Early Modern Culture"

The Early Modern Colloquium at the University of Michigan invites abstracts for papers for their interdisciplinary graduate student conference, "Exploring Resistance through Medieval and Early Modern Culture,” at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, March 16-17, 2018.

Keynote lectures by Carla Della Gatta (USC) and Kathryn Schwarz (Vanderbilt) and panel responses from the medieval and early modern faculty at the University of Michigan.

The challenge to resist structures of oppression both within and beyond the academy is particularly exigent in our current moment. From nearly unavoidable discussions of religion and totalitarian rule, medieval and early modern scholarship has a rich tradition of focusing on the restrictions a society can face and the resistance movements and revolts that result from circumscription. Enriching our discussions of religion, sovereignty, discourses, institutions, etc. more recent work has acknowledged the necessary inclusion of gender, sexuality, race, empire, class, and ethnicity. Kathryn Schwarz, for example, urges us to reconsider our thoughts on women’s willful participation in patriarchal agendas. For her, female conformity in the early modern period can function as a destabilizing and threatening force to ‘heterosocial hierarchy.’ Carla Della Gatta, with a keen interest in the cultural-linguistic divide, uses her training in early modern drama to analyze contemporary Latinx-themed Shakespearean productions. More, her work questions the security of the “ivory tower” and examines the effects of institutional reform and the current political climate on the Humanities and the teaching profession.
 
Inspired by these scholars, we want to expand the dialogue on medieval and early modern forms of resistance. This year’s conference provides an occasion for us to think through the role of medieval and early modern humanities scholarship in wider resistance efforts. We will ask: What forms did resistance take in the medieval and early modern world? How can research on medieval and early modern topics broaden our understanding of resistance as a concept? How can it aid us in enacting resistance through our scholarship? How can thinking about artifacts, institutions, and representations from these periods help us engage more effectively in resistance today? What methods, spaces, and conceptual tools can help us resist, or understand resistance, through our work in medieval and early modern studies?

We invite fifteen-minute presentations by graduate students in any discipline that engage productively with the concept of resistance. Relevant projects might address one or more of the following topics:
· Discourses and institutions
· Print, media, censorship
· Religion, conversion, heresy
· Art, literature, representation
· Law and criminality
· Nation, location, sovereignty
· State formation, jurisprudence
· Science, technology, natural law
· Sexuality, chastity
· Empire, race, slavery
· Revolution, reform
· Language and translation
· Pain, pleasure

This conference will also include a special session co-sponsored by the University of Michigan Drama Interest Group, "Performance Studies and Resistance." Abstracts for this session may:

· Examine sites of critical resistance in the intersections of medieval and early modern performance studies and performance studies more broadly.
· Map moments of resistance in and around medieval and early modern performances.
· Offer resistance to entrenched assumptions or practices in medieval and early modern performance studies.

Please submit 250-300 word abstracts papers to the Early Modern Colloquium (earlymodcolloq@gmail.com) with the subject line “EMC Conference” by December 31, 2017.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. And remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)

Monday, September 25, 2017

Call for Abstracts! NeMLA

Attention grad students: The Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA) has issued a call for abstracts! Visit their site to submit.

As always, remember that if you decide to submit proposals to any conferences, be sure to consider applying for funding. See the Graduate Studies Office’s webpage on Conference Travel Funding. Remember that you have to apply for the funding before you attend the conference. (In recent years, the funding has tended to run out early in the spring semester.)



The Northeast Modern Language Association's 2018 keynote speaker will be Professor Rob Nixon, the Currie C. and Thomas A. Barron Family Professor in the Humanities and the Environment at Princeton University. He is the author of Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor, which won numerous awards, including the International Studies Association for the best book in environmental studies.