CFP: Motor Culture and the Road, SWPACA Conference (Feb. 10-13, 2016), Deadline Extended to November 15, 2015

Stacy Rusnak's picture
Call for Papers
November 15, 2015
New Mexico, United States
Subject Fields: 
Film and Film History, Graduate Studies, Literature, Popular Culture Studies, Journalism and Media Studies

SWPACA Conference (February 10-13, 2016, Albuquerque, New Mexico). Motor Culture and the Road welcomes all papers that engage with a variety of topics that cover motor culture and/or representations of “the road.”  There are wide sweeping possibilities for this focus of study, and therefore multiple disciplines can be represented through this area.   Motor Culture and the Road can simply be about automobiles, travel and/or mobility; but it also is much more expansive to include topics about community building, roadside myths, and/or nostalgia about the past.  However one chooses to interpret the terms motor and road, there is little doubt that both have been influential in shaping popular culture.  Writers, musicians, photographers and screenwriters have long used the image of the car and the open road as sources of inspiration.  

This call for papers seeks intriguing and unique approaches to the topic of Motor Culture and the Road.  Studies of the past, present or future of motor culture and the road are all of interest for this conference.   Please join us for the 37th annual conference just steps away from Route 66 for an engaging, interdisciplinary investigation of the increasingly popular and diverse representations of mobility and our culture(s).  Our goal is to leave the conference with a broader understanding of the potentialities of motor culture and the road, the emerging pedagogy in this area, new methodologies for studying motor culture and the road, and our roles as citizens in this culture. 

Proposal topics for Motor Culture and the Road might include, but are not limited to:

• Strong Female Characters ( For example, Imperator Furiosa from Mad Max: Fury Road)

• Famous vehicles such as the semi-truck from Maximum Overdrive (1986), “Christine” from Stephen King’s film, or Dragula from the TV Series The Munsters

• documentaries and/or travelogues

• videogames, graphic novels, fiction, radio, art

• car or motorcycle commercials

• car or motorcycle history (models and styles, classic and modern, the industry)

• lowriders, hot rods, custom cars/choppers and racial/ethnic, class, or gender identity

• car / biker shows: Sturgis, South Dakota (local) or Yokohama Mooneyes, Japan (global)

• histories of roads, routes, highways, traffic

• GPS, Google Maps, automobility

• Route 66 and roadside architecture

• Nation and/ or citizenship, region, locality

• advertising, symbols, propaganda

• borders, real and imagined

• The road and post-apocalyptic landscapes / “The road to nowhere”

• Environmental impacts and ecological issues

• Popular automobile robots like the Transformers or the Jaegers (Pacific Rim)

• Representations of the motorized robot in anime or manga

Paper or panel proposals are due by 11/15/ 2015, submitted to the Southwest PCA/ACA database:

Questions?  Contact: Stacy Rusnak, Area Chair, Motor Culture and the Road

Contact Info: 

Dr. Stacy Rusnak

Georgia Gwinnett College

Contact Email: