Call for Panel proposals for the 32nd European Association for American Studies and 63rd British Association for American Studies Conference
4 – 7 April 2018, King’s College London, University College London, and the British Library
Panel Title: “Fictional Representations of North American Ideological Environment/ Space and Place Divisions”
Current dramatic events, such as those recently unfolding in Charlottesville, Virginia, point out to deep historical divisions within the present American ideological territory. American writers have engaged with such cultural phenomena. Thus, for instance, the specific milieu of the frontier ethos and the frontiersman are resuscitated by authors like T.C. Boyle and Dave Eggers within the narrative space of the contemporary American novel, via characters evading or violently confronting the national political power nexus. Recent American fictions imaginatively approach: economic clashes between the neoliberal multinational elite and locally manipulated blue and white-collar participants in the production of goods (e.g. Jennifer Eggers, Joshua Ferris, Jonathan Franzen, Allegra Goodman, Sam Lipsyte, Ralph Nader, and Joseph O’Neill); ethnic conflicts within national and formerly colonial/subaltern environments (e.g. Khaled Hosseini, Mohja Kahf, Randa Jarrar), including those of the Confederacy and the Union (e.g. T. Geronimo Johnson, Paul Beatty); LGBTQ minority vs. mainstream gender majority continental/intersectional problematic encounters (e.g. Michelle Cliff, Hanya Yanagihara, Emily M. Danforth), as well as their social and individually psychological consequences. Submissions are sought for a panel which aims to explore how American novelists represent such spatial separations/divisions in present-day United States. Please send an abstract (250 words) for a 20-minute paper, including a title, an email address, and a brief CV to Mihai Mindra, at firstname.lastname@example.org, by September 20, 2017.