CFP: Virginia Humanities Conference: “The Unbearable Humanities”

Kevin Minister's picture
Type: 
Call for Papers
Date: 
January 15, 2017
Location: 
Virginia, United States
Subject Fields: 
Humanities, Cultural History / Studies, Popular Culture Studies, Sexuality Studies, Women's & Gender History / Studies

The 2017 Virginia Humanities Conference at Shenandoah University invites proposals for papers, panel sessions, and performances that investigate any aspect of unbearableness within the humanities. This conference seeks to explore the concept of the unbearable—that which cannot be endured or tolerated—with scholars, activists, and students from a wide variety of disciplines and institutions. Lauren Berlant and Lee Edelman, authors of Sex, or the Unbearable, will be the keynote speakers. VHC 2017 will examine how and what kinds of knowledge the humanities produce that existing structures cannot bear; how and why approaches to this unbearableness that are grounded in the humanities are met with resistance; and, finally, how we in the humanities value, make use of, and respond to contemporary, and sometimes unbearable, issues. Deadline for submission is January 15, 2017. The conference will be held April 7-8, 2017, on Shenandoah University’s main campus in Winchester, VA. For full conference details and to submit proposals, please visit http://vahumanitiesconference.org/.

Possible interdisciplinary themes include but are not limited to the following:

Unbearable People: How do humanities studies challenge conversations about what it means to be human?

  • The unbearable in mass media, social media, and/or popular culture
  • Celebrity and fan culture
  • Refugees, migrants, and the undocumented
  • Cyborgs, werewolves, zombies, superheroes, and/or the transhuman

Unbearable Ambiguity: How does ambiguity serve as a structuring mechanism of social life?

  • Ambiguous identities (racial, linguistic, gender, etc.)
  • In-between spaces
  • Living with ambiguity
  • Teaching the ambiguous

Unbearable Futures: How do humanities studies trouble the assumption of a happy future?

  • Social activism and/or social movements
  • Eco-cultural studies
  • Future role of the humanities and the arts
  • Future of the academy and/or free speech on college campuses

Please submit 250-word abstracts to vhc@su.eduor using this online form. Individual, panel, and roundtable proposals are welcome. Undergraduate students are invited to present their research via interactive poster sessions or individual papers with the support of a faculty member. Deadline for submission is January 15, 2017. Conference will be held April 7-8, 2017, on Shenandoah University’s main campus in Winchester, VA. For full conference details, please visit http://vahumanitiesconference.org/.

Contact Info: 

Petra M. Schweitzer, PhD, President of the Virginia Humanities Conference and Professor of Comparative Literature/Director of Gender and Women's Studies at Shenandoah University

Contact Email: