The Africa since 1990 forum of the MLA invites submission of abstracts for a non-guaranteed panel titled “Questioning Precarity” at the 2018 Annual Convention. As a concept, precarity has been associated with a retrenchment of the state, erosion of Fordist production and casualization of labor, among others, especially in the Global North. Precarity is less frequently invoked with respect to the repeated failures of the state, dysfunctional economies, and rampant informalization of labor that have long been hallmarks of societies in Africa and elsewhere in the Global South. In this panel, we wish to examine the extent to which discussions about precarity and the precariat as elaborated by authors like Judith Butler, Brett Neilson and Ned Rossiter, as well as Guy Standing among others might be relevant for interpreting discourses around persistent conditions, especially in Africa, but also elsewhere in the global south. We follow the questioning of Ronaldo Munck (2013) who asks: “is the term novel or even relevant, for the millions of workers and urban poor in the global South for whom precariousness has always been a seemingly natural condition?”
Send 250 word abstracts and a one-page CV before March 15 2017 to email@example.com with ‘MLA PANEL” in subject line.
We welcome papers that refer to literature and cinema from the Global South in addressing the following questions among others:
Only members can participate in this group's discussions.