CFP: PAMLA 2016 Session on Competing Visions of Place (Pasadena, 11-13 November 2016) (Reminder Deadline Approaching: June 10)

Kara Hisatake Discussion

Session Title: Competing Visions of Place


This special session examines contested representations of place, questioning how literary, visual, filmic, and archival materials can encapsulate competing visions of what a place is or should become. The session explores how these particular ideological visions of place can legitimize material acts of violence, or offer alternate re-visions.


Corporations, government bodies, political, ethnic groups and others have distinct and differing visions of what place, inside or outside the nation, means. The collective memory of a place has often been transformed through external forces such as warfare, colonialism, tourism, urbanization, gentrification, climate change, and pollution. Within these locations, different visions of what that place is or should become are contested and negotiated in the popular imagination. For instance, a Pacific island might be both a paradise and a military base. How might the depictions of place encapsulate the competing and even contradictory popular imaginings of that place? What do these different visions of place tell us about that site’s relation to dominant imaginaries? Who gets to “define” a place, and how do these conceptions legitimize acts of racism, sexism, or other types of violence? This special session invites papers that investigate representations of place in a wide array of cultural production, such as literary texts, visual and popular culture, films, and the archive. We especially welcome paper proposals that consider how ideologically-driven visions of place have translated into material violence, such as the construction of tourist resorts, deforestation, and nuclear testing, or alternate re-visions to violent constructions of place. 


The PAMLA Conference in 2016 will be held at the Westin Pasadena from Friday, November 11 to Sunday, November 13. The deadline for paper proposals is June 10.

Paper proposals must be made to the online system found here:
For any questions on this session, please contact presiding officers Danielle Crawford ( and Kara Hisatake (