“The Sustainable Humanities” is the admirable title of Stephanie Foote and Stephanie LeMenager’s comments on the role of the humanities in the research on, practice of, and teaching of sustainability (PMLA May 2012). Their title asks us to imagine that the humanities is made sustainable by its participation in the broader project of sustainability–or whatever you choose to name the equitable sharing of the planetary commons. The MLA Commons seems the perfect place to test Rob Nixon’s assertions in the same PMLA issue that the commons need not be a site of tragedy but can instead be a site of cooperation. This group invites all interested in sharing ideas of research, practice, and teaching that continue to define and enhance the role of the humanities in the project of sustainability.

CfP: Future Past (GSA 2019, Environmental Studies Network)

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    Joela Jacobs

    German Studies Association

    Oct. 3-6, 2019 – Portland, Oregon

    “Future Past”

    Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies Network

    Abstracts due Jan. 15, 2019

    The Environmental Studies Network invites submissions for a series of panels for the GSA 2019, taking place October 3-6, 2019 in Portland, Oregon.

    We invite submissions for a series of panels entitled \”Future Past” that engage with concepts of time in respect to environmental questions in German-speaking cultures. Panels could consider ways of imagining environmental futurities from the vantage point of the past or present, or conceive of endings as beginnings and vice versa. Papers might ask how deep time suggests different objects of narration, impacts storytelling, or proposes new models for understanding history. Temporal shifts might re-conceptualize space and spatial relations, and a view to the future, be it utopian, dystopian, or speculative, might alter ideas about the past as well as impact contemporary behaviors.
    Topics include but are not limited to the following:

    • geological time scales
    • deep time
    • alternate futurities
    • dystopias, utopias
    • science fiction, climate fiction
    • speculative fiction
    • speculative ecology


    Please send 250-500 word abstracts for individual papers or full panels, with CVs and AV requests by Tuesday, January 15, 2019 to all three Environmental Studies Network coordinators:


    Presenters must be members of the German Studies Association. Information on membership is available on the GSA website: http://www.thegsa.org
    The Environmental Studies Network, founded in 2012 within the German Studies Association, promotes interdisciplinary ecocritical approaches to environmental issues through cultural, digital, historical, literary, historical, and visual studies. Scholars within the Environmental Studies Network are keenly interested in examining how these areas of study, which include political and philosophical questions drawn from deep ecology, ecofeminism, environmental justice, “new materialism,” and the Anthropocene, might inform our understanding of German studies. The German Studies Environmental Studies Network welcomes debate and dialogue with the natural sciences and policy studies. Indeed, it is our goal to show that environmental problems are always already both cultural and scientific.

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