CFP: Target Practices from the Cold War to the Wars on Terror (Deadline August 31, 2014)

American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA)
CFP: Target Practices from the Cold War to the Wars on Terror (Deadline August 3, 2014)
In The Age of the World Target (2006) Rey Chow argues that we live in an era in which “the target” is a key technological, geopolitical, and cultural figure. Technologies of targeting are emerging to reach global destinations with pinpoint precision; yet, fatal errors occur. “Being targeted” is becoming an everyday reality for civilians and combatants. The target reveals a crisis on multiple fronts. It raises questions about relations between the ethical and juridical; territoriality and deterritorialization; humans and technology; state and nation; past and present technologies of targeting; and the nature of knowledge production under neoliberalism. We are interested in aggressive “target practices” that occur when America is at war. We welcome global perspectives on the multi-directional dynamics of targeting and seek diverse studies of how the U.S. targets others in domestic and foreign contexts. Given the relation between technologies and epistemologies of targeting via the emergence of Area Studies, thinking the target prompts analysis of “research as a practice of the imagination,” for the “areas” we study “are not facts but artifacts of our interests and our fantasies as well as our needs to know, to remember, and to forget” (Arjun Appadurai, “Grassroots Globalization”). Suggested Topics: Targeting, space, and optics * Targeting technologies * The ethics and legality of targeting * Collateral damage * Domestic targets * Targeting as tactic of state power/empire * The U.S. as target * Rhetorics or narratives of targeting * The bio-politics of targeting *

This is a proposed seminar for the American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) conference to be held in Seattle in March 2015. Seminars should consist of 8-12 people and involve 2 hour meetings for 2-3 days. We seek participants from a range of institutions and at different stages in their careers. For more info see:

Please email seminar paper proposals no later than August 31, 2014. Contact: Melissa Stephens ( and Theo Finigan (

Categories: Non ACCUTE CFPs

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