Five International and British Literature Panels at the Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA) 2023

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Type: 
Conference
Date: 
March 23, 2023
Location: 
New York, United States
Subject Fields: 
African History / Studies, Canadian History / Studies, Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Indigenous Studies, South Asian History / Studies

Please submit 200-word abstracts through your new or previous Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA) user account by going to https://www.buffalo.edu/nemla.html and following the links. Abstract submission deadline is Septermber 30, 2022. The following are all proposed convention panels. Indviduals may present at only one session of the same kind. Session typses are panels/seminars and roundtables, so it is possible to present at two NeMLA convention sessions all together.

1. South Asian Literatures: Women Writing Men, Men Writing Women

South Asian literary works have given us a memorable array of complex portraits of women and men and the relations between them. Some characters favor traditional modes of understanding the roles and behaviors of the sexes and their interrelations, others seem oriented to a progressive outlook on gender and the relations relations between women, men and non-binary individuals, while still others apparently embody a mixture of these attitudes. May we discern patterns or differences in matters of gender and gender relations when taking into account whether the authors in question identify as female, male, or non-binary? Subject Fields: Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Literature, Sexuality Studies, South Asian History / Studies, Women's & Gender History / Studies.

 

2. Roles of First Nation Peoples in Modern Canadian Literary Works

Modern Canadian poets and authors of fiction have incorporated aspects of First Nation cultures and characters in a range of works. In some cases portraits of First Nation individuals and communities are central to these literary works while in others they are less prominent. What are the similarities and differences between the depictions of First Nation peoples? Are the literary treatments of them reliable? What may we learn about Canadian historical and political realities in Canada, as well as gender roles, from these portrayals? Subject Fields: Ethnic History / Studies, Canadian History / Studies, Indigenous Studies, Literature, Native American History / Studies.

 

3.  Distinctively Caribbean Cultures and Characters

Caribbean poets, dramatists, and novelists have created a complex portrait of the Islands' cultures and characters. Certainly many of these characters' and cultures' traits resonate with those in other areas of the world. But what are some of the distinctive characteristics of Caribbean life in literatures of the Caribbean? How do historical, political, or folkloric legacies help us understand these distinctive traits? What are the liberatory implications of distinctly Caribbean characters, communities, environments, and folkloric motifs? Please submit 200-word abstracts through your new or previous Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA) user account by going to https://www.buffalo.edu/nemla.html and following the links. Abstract submission deadline is Septermber 30, 2022.

Subject Fields: Black History / Studies, Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Literature, Race Studies

 

4. Portrayals of Africans in Europe and the USA in Modern African Literature

Diverse African literary works portray the experiences of African characters in the United States and other Western nations. Such works include Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Americanah, Imbolo Mbue's Behold the Dreamers, and NoViolet Bulawayo's We Need New Names. What do such portrayals tell us about imagined ideas of Western opportunity and promise? What do these types of narratives reveal about shared and divergent outlooks and lifestyles in African and Western communities? What different kinds of political and gender-based experiences are dramatized in these works, and what are the similarities and differences between the views of such experiences by African and Western characters? Subject Fields: African History / Studies, American History / Studies, Black History / Studies, Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Race / Ethnic Studies

 

5. Modernist Jany Eyre?

Coming to Charlotte Brontë's 1847 novel, Jane Eyre, for the first time, one may be struck by its apparently forward-looking elements, ones that do not seem to line up with expectations for early Victorian novels. In terms of the novel's explorations of inner consciousness, one observer finds that Jane Eyre is a precursor of modernist authors such as Proust, Woolf, and Joyce. Furthermore, Jane's keen awareness of women's equality with men in terms of the right to education, access to the wider world, and happiness in a relationship has distinctly feminist overtones. But may Jane Eyre be classified as a modernist and feminist work of literature? After all, many aspects of the story follow conventional novelistic features such as a woman's search for fulfillment in marriage, and the writing style resembles that of other Victorian novels; narrative features even hearken back to fairy tales and romance. Thus, the question arises, is Jane Eyre essentially a novel of its time, or may we better understand it as a harbinger of literary modernity that anticipates future literary and social developments? Subject Fields: British History / Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Literature, Sexuality Studies, Women's & Gender History / Studies

 
 
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Thomas Jay Lynn

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