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The 2014 informal convention theme is: The Lives of Cities.
CALL FOR PAPERS – 2014 MMLA Conference:
The Midwest Modern Language Associate invites proposals for the 2014 conference, which will take place in Detroit, MI, November 13-16, 2014. Although papers are accepted on any topic, we welcome participants to consider this year’s theme, “The Lives of Cities,” as a rich field of inquiry. Proposals may be for individual papers, for Special Sessions focused on the conference theme, or for complete panels that do not necessarily tie to the conference theme (see below for more details); there are also a number of Permanent Sessions, whose specific CFPs continue to be updated on the MMLA website.
“The Lives of Cities” is meant to gesture broadly towards the experiences of urban inhabitants in all aspects and phases of urban development—from the very beginnings of urbanization throughout the globe to the resuscitation of contemporary urban landscapes decimated by industrial flight. Papers might consider the (sometimes competing) narratives of the development of individual cities, of urban space planning generally, of waves of migration into and out of cities, of the lived experiences of urban inhabitants. Topics could include, but are not limited to:
economic fluctuations: poverty, wealth, and class conflicts
wheeling and dealing
industrial growth and change
labor migrations into, and suburban flight from, the city
the physical city: architecture, urban planning, transportation, parks/playgrounds
city vs. country: exalting or escaping the city
suburbs, exurbs, and beyond
ruins, past and present
the city as destination
fantasies of urban life
exploring the city: flânerie, urban tourism
public and private spaces
gendered and queer urban spaces
crowds and solitude
anonymity and identity
the city in history: the mediaeval city, the Renaissance city, the Victorian city, etc.
the life of a specific city
urban art movements
the city in music, visual arts, or literature
the city and modernity/postmodernity
the multicultural city
terror and the city
the urban, or the city, as trope
Abstracts of approximately 250 words should include the following identifying information: your name, institutional affiliation, email address, and paper title; in addition, to facilitate scheduling, please identify up to three of the following categories in which your paper may be most usefully placed:
American Literature, Comparative Studies, English Literature, French Literature, Genre Studies, German Literature, Hispanic Literatures, Interdisciplinary Approaches, Italian Literature, Language Studies, Other Languages & Literatures, Teaching, Medieval, Renaissance/Early Modern, Eighteenth Century, Nineteenth Century, Twentieth Century, Contemporary Literature, Colonial, Post-Colonial, Travel, the Midwest/Rust-Belt.
The deadline for all individual paper proposals, as well as for proposals for complete panels that are not directly tied to the conference theme, is May 15. Individual and panel proposals should be submitted directly to the MMLA office via email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Once accepted, individual papers will be organized into sessions. Panel proposals should be submitted as a unit, including paper titles and abstracts, as well as title, affiliation, and full contact information for all participants, clearly identifying the panel chair.
Proposals for Special Sessions that focus on the conference theme in some way are also welcome. These do not require identification of a full slate of papers but instead, if accepted, assume that the session organizer will serve as panel chair (who may also give a paper). Accepted Special Session calls will be posted on the MMLA website and will require that the organizer receive proposals directly and vet them to build the full panel. Special Session proposals are due April 21 via email (email@example.com).
The MMLA website will also contain postings for individual CFPs for the Permanent Sessions that run annually. (These CFPs are typically tied to some version of the conference theme.) Check the website regularly for additions to these calls. .