ACCUTE CFP: Member-Organized Panels

Member-Organized Panel CFPs

The following CFPs are for panels organized by members of ACCUTE. (Click to see our general open-field call for papers, our jointly sponsored panels, and our board-sponsored panels.) All submissions to member-organized panels should be directed to the contact person named in the relevant CFP and should include the following (in PDF when possible):

Note: You must be an ACCUTE member in good standing to apply for a member-organized panel. All submissions rejected by member organizers will be considered in ACCUTE’s 2018 general pool. See answers to some FAQs about member-organized panels. The deadline for all member-organized panel submissions is 15 November 2017.

For ease of navigation, the member-organized panels are organized alphabetically by title. Click on a title below, or click here to jump down to the list of proposals.


The Cannibalism Motif
Member-organized 1
Organizer: Jan Purnis (University of Regina), jan(dot)purnis(at)uregina(dot)ca

Proposals are invited for papers exploring the motif of cannibalism in literature and culture from any historical period. Participants might consider, for example, intersections of representations of cannibalism with colonialist or religious discourse; cannibalism as social critique or counter-discourse; medicinal cannibalism; fairy tale ogres; descriptions of famine; revenge cannibalism; cannibalism and community; cannibalism and digestive theory; or cannibalism and psychology. In order to encourage discussion, and given the range of potential material covered, broader theorizations of the topic (rather than close readings of single texts) are especially encouraged.

Please send required files to: jan(dot)purnis(at)uregina(dot)ca

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CanLit Publics: Investigating the Field of Canadian Literary-Public Culture
Member-organized 2
Organizers: Sarah Roger (McMaster University); Jeremy Haynes (McMaster University); Paul Barrett (Acadia University), paul(dot)barrett(at)

In the last twelve months, CanLit has witnessed a series of increasingly tense and vitriolic controversies. While some welcome the emergence of such cultural flashpoints as necessary acknowledgements of what has always lurked beneath the surface of literary study, others see this as a transformation of the discipline itself: abandoning textual study to focus strictly on analyses of culture and power.
This panel invites papers that consider the at-times fractious relationship between the study and institution of CanLit and Canadian public culture. What are the histories of the relationship between CanLit and public culture? How is CanLit taken up in more public and popular forums? Do the controversies of the past year signal a change in how we imagine CanLit’s goals? What is the relationship between the texts, our scholarly work, and a broader reading public? Does the Canadian public care what we think? Is it possible, any longer, to just read the books?

Please send required files to: paul(dot)barrett(at)acadiau(dot)ca

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Crash Fictions and the Contemporary Moment
Member-organized 3
Organizer: Ian Butcher (Duquesne University), ianbutcher(at)gmail(dot)com

2018 marks the tenth anniversary of Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy, the beginning of widespread public awareness of the global financial crisis. In contrast to the assertions of experts in the years preceding the crash that the economy was simply too complex for individuals to understand, novels and films have emerged in the past decade as key genres in which to explore the causes and consequences of the financial crisis. This panel seeks to address two primary questions with regard to narratives of the financial crisis: what is their ideological function and what is their ongoing cultural and historical significance? Do they provide readers with a critical perspective on capitalism in order to promote new modes of living or do they simply provide justification for “kinder, gentler” forms of capitalism that will ultimately cause the same crises? Can they help us to understand the rise of right-wing extremism in North America and Europe? Do they reinforce the longings for the “radical centrism” of a figure like Emmanuel Macron? Ultimately, what world do they describe and what future do they imagine?

Please send required files to: ianbutcher(at)gmail(dot)com

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Devices and Desires: Digital Devices in the Classroom
Member-organized 4
Organizer: Manina Jones (Western University), mjones(at)uwo(dot)ca

Phones, laptops, digital readers and tablets are part of the everyday lives of students. Do they enrich or detract from the classroom learning environment? This panel welcomes submissions that integrate research on pedagogy and experiential accounts to analyse the value of digital devices in the literature classroom. Presentations might address some of the following issues:
• How do you, your department and your university or college regulate the institutional use of such tools?
• What is the value of an electronics ban in the classroom?
• How can digital devices productively be integrated into classroom activities and pedagogical practice?
• What use do your students make of literary and critical texts available in digital form (eg., via Kobo or Kindle, but also open-access web editions of texts)? Are there advantages and/or drawbacks to this use?
• Can note-taking on laptops evolve beyond transcription and encourage analytical work and collaboration among students?
• What digital resources and platforms do you integrate into your classroom practice?

Please send required files to: mjones(at)uwo(dot)ca

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L.M. Montgomery and the City
Member-organized 5
Organizer: Kate Scarth (University of Prince Edward Island), kscarth(at)upei(dot)ca

L.M. Montgomery, one of Canada’s most beloved and well-known writers, is firmly tied to rural, agricultural PEI, especially Green Gables and Avonlea, in both the popular imagination and scholarship (Alexander, Barry, Epperly, Gammel, Holmes, Keen, Rootland, Solt, Waterston). However, this panel positions her as a chronicler of urban Canada. The relationship between the urban and Montgomery’s writing—and indeed, Atlantic Canadian, and even Canadian, literature more broadly—is under-studied (see Edwards and Ivison). Montgomery wrote journals and letters about her life in Prince Albert, Charlottetown, Halifax, and Toronto. Cities are central settings in her novels, Anne of the Island and Jane of Lantern Hill. Briefer urban references provide counterpoints to rural PEI, strengthening island identity (e.g., as a safe space in contrast to dangerous Boston) or as representing new possibilities (such as a university education, not yet an option on the island). Cities and towns figure in her legacy (e.g., Prince Albert in Fishbane’s novel, Maud). This panel invites consideration of Montgomery and the urban in her life, her work, and her legacy.

Please send required files to: kscarth(at)upei(dot)ca

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Mental Health and Academia, A Faculty Perspective
Member-organized 6
Organizer: Lee Easton (Mount Royal University), leaston(at)mtroyal(dot)ca

Across Canada, postsecondary campuses are undertaking initiatives focused on promoting awareness of the importance of mental health. These efforts, however, focus primarily on student support and less on mental health issues among faculty. In a profession where teachers are expected to embody a special kind of intellectual prowess, disclosing mental disabilities and illness may be especially difficult and pose different challenges than those encountered by students. To open a discussion about the profession and mental health, this panel will explore topic of mental health from an academic faculty perspective addressing such topics as:

• What challenges do we encounter maintaining our mental health in the face of increasing demands on the professoriate?
• What additional challenges might faculty who identify as queer, indigenous, people with physical disabilities, or as a racial minority confront when dealing with mental health issues?
• How can administrative structures and processes related to career progression (e.g. scheduling, workloads, evaluation, tenure decisions, rehiring practices) be made more supportive of mental health and wellness?
• What are the challenges of disclosing mental disabilities or illness? How do stereotypes of the “perfect teacher” inhibit dealing with mental health and disabilities?
• How does precarious work affect the mental health of contract faculty?

Please send required files to: leaston(at)mtroyal(dot)ca

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Nostalgia and the West
Member-organized 7
Organizer: Joel Deshaye (Memorial University), jdeshaye(at)mun(dot)ca

Whether it be Fredric Jameson’s “nostalgia for the present” or Svetlana Boym’s more recent insight about restorative and reflective nostalgias, ideas of nostalgia have developed far beyond the simple notion of a longing for home. For Susan Stewart, this longing is a “social disease,” but it is also a dimension of all narrative because writers separate themselves from their subjects with the text itself. In that sense, nostalgia is about distance and space. In the narrated landscape of the West, where distances stretch across the horizontal expanses of the Great Plains and the vertical reaches of the Rockies, how, when, why, and where does literature invoke nostalgia? Consider, for examples:

• the West as an idea (pace Sherrill Grace’s “Idea of North”)
• the temporality of the West
• Indigenous literature and superimposed borders on the West
• the genre of the Western
• tourism and what Jerry Bannister calls the “false nostalgia”
• representations of house and home, or homemakers, or homesteaders

Please send required files to: jdeshaye(at)mun(dot)ca

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“Oh, the humanity”: Humanitarian Reason, Humanitarian Narratives
Member-organized 8
Organizer: Leif Schenstead-Harris (Concordia University), leifschensteadharris(at)gmail(dot)com

On seeing the Hindenburg burst into flames in 1937, announcer “Herb” Morrison exclaimed “oh, the humanity.” His reaction is telling: behind today’s spectacles of disaster and political crises work a humanitarian logic of secular moral reason. Humanitarian reason frequently provides the “solutions” of contemporary governance such as the Canadian response to the Syrian refugee crisis from 2015-2016. Yet humanitarian logics also structure the genealogies of liberal morality within contemporary democracy that lead to managerial tendencies, as Didier Fassin and Jennifer Hyndman argue. While humanitarian reason has been critically examined by social scientists and political theorists, it has not yet found sufficient attention within literary studies.

This panel revisits humanitarian reason from within the discipline of literary studies. Within literature, humanitarian texts run the gamut from contemporary novels and short stories authored by people associated at various trajectories with humanitarian reason. Representative texts include Viet Thanh Nguyen’s The Refugees (2017) and Peter Showler’s Refugee Sandwich (2013) but also documents of governmentality, including the Canadian government’s #WelcomeRefugees initiative or the UNHCR’s Stories initiative. Possible topics could include literary or governmental narratives, literary critiques of humanitarian reason, and/or histories of humanitarianism from the perspective of literary figures or communities.

Please send required files to: leifschensteadharris(at)gmail(dot)com

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Pedagogies of the Archive
Member-organized 9
Organizer: Jason Wiens (University of Calgary), jlwiens(at)ucalgary(dot)ca

Significant work has been done in recent years on the changing nature of archival research and of the archive itself. Most of this work has tended to focus on the archive as a site for research; less has been done on the archive as a pedagogical resource. The ongoing transformation of the archive from the analog to the digital has increasingly made site-specific archival materials available anywhere, including the graduate and undergraduate classroom. This panel invites papers that discuss new ways of integrating archival research into the classroom. Possible topics to be explored may include:

• Digital versus print archives
• Archival research and inquiry-based learning
• Archives and the flipped classroom
• Sound and visual archives in the classroom
• The undergraduate student as archival researcher
• The creation of archives in the classroom
• Oral archives and histories
• Reconciliation and the archive
• TEI and new methods of close reading
• Archival documents and the creative writing classroom
• The ethics of archival research
• Genetic / textual critical methodologies

Please send required files to jlwiens(at)ucalgary(dot)ca

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Surveying Canlit: a presentation-interview panel on course syllabi
Member-organized 10
Organizer: Manina Jones (Western University), mjones(at)uwo(dot)ca

In the wake of recent controversies on social media, in the press, and in public discourse over the state of “#Canlit”, this panel asks contributors to share their thoughts on what versions of Canadian literature currently emerge from the academy by way of Canadian literature survey courses. What does it mean to “survey” Canadian literature? On this panel, five participants will speak for no more than 10 minutes each. Each speaker will take us through aspects of the process involved in constructing the syllabus for their Canadian Literature course. Following their presentation, each speaker will be interviewed by the next panellist for up to 5 minutes, and after all the presentations there will be general discussion. Some of the following questions may stimulate presentations, but they are by no means exhaustive:

• What practical, structural issues influence your syllabus?
• Do you draw on overarching themes, questions, issues, narratives?
• What range of criteria determine your text choices?
• What range of genres, media, and performance do you consider?
• To what constituencies is your course addressed?
• How do you define “diversity”?
• What historical range of texts do you include?
• What does “coverage” mean? Does it matter?
• Have students been involved in course design?
• Do pre-existing institutional categories (eg., course titles, calendar descriptions, prescribed readings) influence courses?
• What don’t you teach that you wish you could?

Please send required files to: mjones(at)uwo(dot)ca

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Trigger and Content Warnings
Member-organized 11
Organizer: Brenna Clarke Gray (Douglas College), grayb(at)douglascollege(dot)ca

It’s the controversial teaching topic of the moment: trigger and content warnings. Are they about sheltering overprotected students, or about giving students information they need to keep themselves healthy? Is there a significant difference between trigger and content warnings? And what does the general public misunderstand about this issue? This round table discussion invites a range of perspectives on the pedagogy of trigger and content warnings. We welcome perspectives from classroom teachers, students, and those who make and enforce institutional policy.

Please send required files to: grayb(at)douglascollege(dot)ca

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Uneasy Feelings: Space, Affective Relations, and Dis/orientation
Member-organized 12
Organizer: Celiese Lypka (University of Calgary), celiese(dot)lypka(at)ucalgary(dot)ca

This panel seeks to explore what it means to feel/be uneasy. How are feelings of unease depicted: what are the movements; what are the affects; what (if any) are the boarders of unease? Is there a difference in representations of unease in literature, film, fine arts, etc.; or the proliferation of unease in contemporary cultural studies? In her feminist critiques of happiness and phenomenology, Sara Ahmed notes how feelings of unease can saturate a body or environment: “The word ‘comfort’ suggests well-being and satisfaction, but it also suggests an ease and an easiness. To follow the rules of [heteronormativity] is to be at ease in a world that reflects back the form one inhabits as an ideal. Of course, one can be made to feel uneasy by one’s inhabitance of an ideal. One can be made uncomfortable by one’s own comforts.” This panel seeks to expand the study of affective discomfort in order to theorize uneasy feelings. Thus, this discussion will hopefully ask such questions as: what causes feelings of unease and how do we approach them; what does it mean to be uneasy in one’s own body and the world more generally; what does it mean for one’s orientation to the body, others, objects, and the world to be constructed in a relationship to a sense of unease? The CFP invites abstracts on the following topics in order to explore considerations of unease and the following (but additional topics are encouraged):

• Affect theory an d emotions
• Feminist and queer readings
• Race, class, gender, disability
• Politics and social justice
• Anxiety, depression, and illness
• Desire and dis/orientation
• Genre, narrative or discourse
• The body and subjectivity

I hope that this panel will bring a wide range of perspectives and theorization of affective representations or contemporary social issues of unease so as to broaden and consider the impacts of this highly mobile (if not always visible) feeling.

Please send required files to: celiese.lypka(at)ucalgary(dot)ca

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“The Value of Quit Lit?”
Member-organized 13
Organizer: Ross Bullen, ACCUTE’s Contract Academic Faculty Caucus Rep (OCAD University), rbullen(at)faculty(dot)ocadu(dot)ca

In September 2015, Ian Bogost – a tenured professor and well-known public intellectual – wrote a short post on The Atlantic titled, “No One Cares That You Quit Your Job.” Bogost’s essay is an invective against the (largely online) genre of “Quit Lit”: essays by people who have left, or are considering leaving, academia, which highlight some of the problems and inequalities that are common in the modern university. Bogost is highly critical of such essays, claiming that “quitpieces” are “both exhausting and counter-productive” and that “if you’re writing a quitpiece you’ve already lost.” Bogost claims that Quit Lit is harmful because “it’s just more fodder for legislators, corporations, and the general public to undermine the academy.” Bogost’s suggestion that those who quit academia should observe a code of silence has been largely ignored. As the neoliberal university continues to squeeze whole generations of scholars out of the academic labour market, there seems to be little interest in staying quiet about it. Quit Lit is here to stay.
This panel will examine the emergence of Quit Lit as a genre by posing questions about the purpose, value, and limitations of these kinds of narratives. As Quit Lit has become an established feature of writing about academia, critics have raised questions about the genre and whose voices are amplified in conversations about leaving the university. If Quit Lit is capable of making a valuable contribution to academic discourse, what does it need to do better? What does it already do well? We invite proposals for papers that address any aspect of Quit Lit as a genre.

Please send required files to: rbullen(at)faculty(dot)ocadu(dot)ca

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Women’s Autofiction
Member-organized 14
Organizer: Myra Bloom (University of Toronto), myra(dot)bloom(at)utoronto(dot)ca

The past several decades have witnessed the rise of the autofictional novel. Coined by Serge Doubrovsky in 1977 and originally associated with French experimental writers, the term has come to encompass an ever-expanding corpus of quasi-fictional texts. This panel focuses on the women at the vanguard of this genre: from Chris Kraus’s I Love Dick (1997) to Sheila Heti’s How Should a Person Be? (2012), writers have blurred the line between truth and invention to explore and expose the artistic and existential conditions of female subjectivity. The frequently negative critical reception of their work (e.g. the backlash against Heti and Marie Calloway) has further underscored the challenges faced by women in a male-dominated (literary) culture.
Submissions are encouraged on any topic pertaining to women’s autofictional writing, which might include
• Early or current practitioners/practices of self-fictionalization
• Use/subversion/gendering of the confessional mode
• Representation of race/class/gender/sexuality
• Critical reception

Proposals for innovative or experimental presentations (pecha kucha; ignite; multimodal) are particularly encouraged.

Please send required files to: myra(dot)bloom(at)utoronto(dot)ca

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