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Subject Fields: American History / Studies, British History / Studies, Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies, Languages, Literature
Comparative Approaches to 21st-Century Anglophone Holocaust Literature (Research Seminar)
University College London, 27-29 March 2023
Organizers: Robert Eaglestone, Daniel Feldman, Sarah Minslow
Hosted By: Comparative Approaches to Holocaust Literature of the 21st Century (CoHLit)
Over the past three decades, the study of Holocaust literature has become an academic subdiscipline in its own right. In view of the global proliferation of (as well as new threats to) Holocaust memory, this multilateral project addresses the cultural, sociological and biographical diversity of positions occupied by contemporary writers – Jewish and non-Jewish – engaging with the Shoah. In spatial terms, the project is organised around an East-West axis that encompasses three major (German, Russian and English) and three minor languages (Polish, Dutch and Hebrew) and six corresponding geographical areas (Germany, Russia, the US, Poland, the Low Countries and Israel). In adopting the first quarter of the 21st century as its primary time frame, the project offers an integrated comparatist framework that seeks to reconcile the temporal and geographic specificity of Holocaust representation with the simultaneous circulation of certain literary tropes, genres and strategies across and beyond linguistic and national borders.
Call for Papers for Research Seminar
For our London seminar, we invite proposals from scholars who take a comparative approach to literature about the Holocaust published in English since 2000, particularly those in dialogue with works published in Hebrew, Russian, Ukrainian, Polish, German, and Dutch.
We welcome proposals that examine Anglophone literature intended for children, young adults, and adults, but all proposals must be linguistically, culturally, or geographically comparative.
Proposals may be for 20-minute papers, panels of 3-4 speakers on a specific topic, or 60-minute roundtables. Proposals must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, December 2, 2022.
Preference will be given to proposals that include at least one of our key texts (listed below) and/or explore at least one of the following topics:
• Shifts in literary representation of the Holocaust since 2000
• Time, temporality, & memory studies (i.e. familial, national, second-generation/thirdgeneration, postmemory, multidirectional, etc.)
• Postmodern narrative techniques (i.e. multiple perspectives, fragments/flashbacks, imagined futures, blurring boundaries/binaries, etc.)
• Intergenerational trauma and trauma studies approaches
• Materiality in Holocaust literature
• Geographies and ecologies of the Holocaust
• Translation studies
• Poetics of reconciliation
• Portrayals and poetics of national roles (bystanders, oppressors, victims, etc.)
• Gendered experiences of the Holocaust
Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated (2002)
Rachel Seiffert, A Boy in Winter (2017)
Philip Roth, The Plot Against America (2004)
Nathan Englander, "What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank," 2011, The New Yorker
Morris Gleitzman, Once (2006) & Then (2009)
Ransom Riggs, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (2011)
R.J. Palacio, White Bird (2019)
Lucy Adlington, Red Ribbon (2017)
Eve Bunting, One Candle (2004)
Ruth vander Zee, Erika's Story (2013)
Jennifer Elvgren and Fabio Santomauro, The Whispering Town (2014)