The Cormac McCarthy Society’s Eighth International Conference

Cormac McCarthy’s Irish Roots and Influences: Yeats-Joyce-Beckett-O’Brien-Celtic Myth and Lore

Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland – June 16-18, 2020

Call for papers

The Cormac McCarthy Society and the Department of English of Trinity College Dublin announce an international conference on Cormac McCarthy’s Irish literary influences to be held in the Long Room Hub at Trinity College in Dublin on June 16, 17 and 18th, 2020. Our hosts will be Stephen Matterson of the Department of English, Trinity College, and Steven Frye, President of the Cormac McCarthy Society.

We welcome submissions for papers for this conference. Our special areas of concern will be Cormac McCarthy’s roots in, allusions and indebtedness to Irish literature, religious practices, folklore and mythology as represented in his novels and screenplays, as well as in films of his work. We invite particular focus on McCarthy and William Butler Yeats, James Joyce and Samuel Beckett. Discussions of the current political issues occasioned by the United Kingdom’s de facto Brexit revision of the Good Friday Agreement and possible rekindling of “the troubles” are invited as long as some organic connection with literary issues is maintained.

We also invite papers on all other areas of McCarthy’s work, especially with regard to Irish and Catholic literature worldwide.

For those of you who are submitting conference proposals for the first time, please check the existing critical literature to be sure that you are breaking new ground or, at least, looking at the existing texts or criticism in some new or novel way.

Please submit your one to one and a half page precis for papers with an approximately 20-minute reading time, or for three to four paper complete panel proposals. Submissions should be accompanied by brief one-paragraph author’s biography or CV. Full session times for panels will run about 90 minutes. All proposals must be submitted by no later than March 30, 2020. Proposals should be submitted to Stephen Matterson and Rick Wallach, conference co-directors, as Word.doc or PDF attachments at info@cormacmccarthy.com. We will make every effort to qualify your submissions within a short period of time so you can make your travel arrangements as early as possible.

We will be posting more information on accommodations at and near Trinity College, and the costs of conference registration fees, in the near future on our web site, www.cormacmccarthy.com,  and will contact all who submit proposals immediately by email as we firm up our plans. Please also direct any questions you have about the conference to info@cormacmccarthy.com.  Check our web site periodically for regular updates.

Melissa Baird, Queen’s University Belfast

The Postgraduate (PhD) Travel and Research Bursary enabled me to travel to the United States for two weeks to gather sources from several different archives relating to my thesis which examines Irish-American responses to the civil rights movement in Northern Ireland from 1967-1972.

On this trip I spent the first week in Washington D.C., viewing the Ancient Order of Hibernians Collection held at the Catholic University of America, and the Department of State files on Ireland from 1963-1975, held in the National Archives at College Park, Maryland. The second week I spent in New York City, visiting the special collections held at St John’s University, New York University, and the American Irish Historical Society. At St John’s University, I reviewed the papers of Paul O’Dwyer, an Irish- American lawyer, and Hugh Carey, a congressman from New York.

In New York University, I visited the Tamiment Library to explore the Archives of Irish America, especially the papers of Judge James Comerford, who was a leading figure in New York Irish-American social circles, and oral histories interviews from Paul O’Dwyer. In the American Irish Historical Society, I reviewed their holdings of their journal The Recorder and the papers of another Irish-American organisation, The Friendly Sons of St Patrick. This bursary was an enormous help in allowing me to complete this trip and gain access to these sources. This material will massively inform my understanding and analysis of this topic, from which I will now be able to write at least two chapters of my PhD, detailing both the responses from Irish Americans at the grassroots level as well as Irish Americans involved in lobbying the United States, Irish, and British governments.

 

Jennifer Gouck, University College Dublin

 

The PCA/ACA national conference (17th-20th April, Washington Marriott Hotel) was my first experience of a large international conference, as well as my first time presenting a paper in the United States. With an attendance of around 5,000 delegates, the sheer size of this conference was the most difficult thing to wrap my head around. Indeed, its size was both its attraction and its downfall; with over 100 areas of interest, choosing which panels to attend was almost overwhelming. The stamina required for this conference, both mental and physical, was also astounding as panels ran back-to-back from 8am until around 9pm each day. This meant that I occasionally felt I was missing what looked to be a fascinating panel because although the mind was willing, the flesh was weak.

Given that my research into the Manic Pixie Dream Girl in Young Adult literature, media, and culture is interdisciplinary and cross-media, I wanted to make the most of the variety of strands available to me and increase my knowledge of the fields in which I have less experience. On Wednesday 17th, I attended panels on the Netflix era of television, on YA novel adaptation, on femininity, masculinity, and empowerment in magazines and literature, and on animation and Disney (I’ll admit the last one was out of pure curiosity rather than for my academic enrichment). Thursday morning kicked off bright and early at 7am with the Graduate Student Breakfast. Although I was feeling nervous, this mixer proved to be a great opportunity to network, and I met a number of PGRs from across the United States and from across several disciplines. It was here I learned that keynote speaker, April Ryan, would be juggling several commitments that evening. As keen Americanists, readers will no doubt have noted that Thursday 18th April was the day the Mueller Report was released to the American public. Thus, though scheduled to speak at the PCA/ACA Grand Reception, Ms Ryan’s occupation as a White House correspondent meant that she would also have to participate in a segment for news channel CNN. To facilitate this, April gave her speech to the PCA/ACA delegates before dashing to the news trucks parked in the Marriott’s driveway to give her report. She then returned to the ballroom for a Q&A session. Needless to say, the delegates, the majority of which were US residents, were abuzz for most of the day. The deep anger amongst those present was palpable, and the Mueller Report dominated nearly every panel, regardless of its theme.

The following day, I presented on a panel entitled “Children’s and YA Literature and Culture IX: Changing Gender Role(model)s.” Using Franco Moretti’s argument in ‘Conjectures on World Literature’ (2000) that literature can be considered a planetary system, my paper argued that the Manic Pixie Dream Girl (MPDG) trope can be read in a similar way. I suggested that the Manic Pixie is not purely an invention of the twenty-first century but is instead a constellation of canonical literary and cinematic tropes which have evolved through patriarchal storytelling practices over thousands of years.

For me, attending and presenting at this conference was an enriching experience both academically and personally; I was able to travel to a part of the world I had never visited before, meet with upcoming scholars in the field of Children’s and YA Literature, and get a feel for scholarly developments ‘across the pond’. I would like to extend my sincere thanks to the IAAS for this award. I have been involved with the Association since 2015 and their support has allowed me to take up more opportunities than I ever could have managed alone. I thank them not only for their financial support but also for the community’s genuine interest in my personal progress as well as in my research. Special thanks also go to Dr Patricia Kennon of Maynooth University who also supported me financially and gastronomically on this trip by buying me lunch on several occasions. I hope to pay this kindness forward in future.

The IAAS Postgraduate Symposium
“The Land of the (Un)Free: Interrogating Democracy in America”
University College Cork
23
rd  November, 2019


This year, the Irish Association for American Studies Postgraduate Symposium welcomes proposals for papers that interrogate Democracy in America – in how it is constructed, understood, and the extent to which it is successfully enacted. Inspired by current events and political trends within the United States, from the strict abortion laws imposed in Alabama in February, to the on-going humanitarian crisis at the U.S.- Mexico Border, we seek papers that engage with and respond to the paradoxical relationship between the American ideal of democracy, and the actual practice of that democracy. We invite papers that consider the gulf between democratic principles and fundamentally unconstitutional behaviours, with a particular emphasis placed upon undemocratic and authoritarian actions that have both historically shaped America and continue to resurge in the Trump era.

“The Land of the (Un)Free: Interrogating Democracy in America” is a one-day interdisciplinary symposium that seeks to provide an opportunity for Postgraduate Students and Early Career Scholars to share their ideas and contribute their individual voices to the inclusive academic community of American Studies across the island of Ireland.

We welcome proposals for fifteen-minute papers which engage with the concept of democracy within the field of American Studies, encompassing Continental American perspectives (Canada and South America) as well as those related to the United States. Proposed topics may include, but are by no means limited to:

  • Representations of American democracy, American people, and American culture in literature and film
  • Historical insights and social/political considerations regarding democracy and attacks on democracy, political polarisation and democracy
  • New perspectives on Alexis De Tocqueville’s Democracy in America 
  • The relationship between American exceptionalism and democracy
  • Philosophical conceptions of democracy and their application in the U.S. context
  • Explorations of democracy in American music, comics, popular culture
  • Issues of gender, sexuality, class & race in relation to American democracy
  • Democracy in visual culture

The deadline for submissions is Friday, 11th of October 2019. Proposals for papers should include a title, an abstract (max. 300 words), and a short biography. For more information, or to submit a proposal, please email postgrad@iaas.ie

The deadline for bursary applications is Monday, 4th November, 2019.
There are two bursaries available for symposium presenters. Application forms and information can be found at https://iaas.ie/funding-opportunities/. References are *not* required for this bursary application process.

Counter-narratives and Hidden Histories

Irish Association for American Studies

50th Anniversary Conference

Maynooth University, Co. Kildare

3-4 April 2020

CALL FOR PAPERS

As the IAAS turns 50 in 2020, we are delighted to announce that a special anniversary conference will be hosted at Maynooth University on 3rd and 4th April. In keeping with the Association’s ongoing ethos of providing space and opportunity to voices, stories, and bodies historically marginalised by dominant discourses, IAAS 2020 invites submissions on the theme of ‘Counter-narratives and Hidden Histories’.

Confirmed keynote speaker: Professor Amy Mooney (Columbia College Chicago; Terra Foundation for American Art Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford).

Abstracts for individual papers, panels, or roundtables are welcomed on topics related to this broad theme across all disciplines of American and Latin American Studies, including:

  • Anthropology
  • Art
  • Education and pedagogy
  • Film
  • History
  • Literature
  • Music
  • Politics and International Relations
  • Theatre and Performance Studies
  • Visual Culture

The conference will also host a special roundtable session on ‘Anti-racist Teaching and Scholarship’, and welcomes submissions of individual abstracts considering, for example, whiteness in academia, academia and activism, teaching ‘race’, and other related subjects.

Individual submissions:

  • Please provide an abstract of no more than 250 words, along with your name and a brief biography.

Panel submissions:

  • Please provide a brief description of your panel (3 presenters), along with the names and brief biographies of the proposed presenters, and an individual abstract (250 words) for each paper.
  • The composition of panels should be diverse whenever possible, and all-male panels should be avoided.

Roundtable submissions:

  • Please provide a brief description of your roundtable (between 4 and 8 presenters), along with the names and brief biographies of the proposed presenters, and an individual abstract for each paper (no more than 100 words).
  • The composition of roundtables should be diverse, and all-male roundtables will not be accepted.

 

** There will be concession rates for students, ECRs, and scholars on fixed-term contracts.**

** Bursaries are also available. **

 

Deadline for submissions: 1st November 2019

Please send submissions to: IAAS2020conference@gmail.com

Please send enquiries to: Catherine.Gander@mu.ie

For a downloadable PDF copy of this CFP, please see the following link

CFP IAAS 2020

The IAAS Postgraduate Symposium
“The Land of the (Un)Free: Interrogating Democracy in America”
University College Cork
23
rd  November, 2019

Call for Roundtable Participants:

In addition to accepting proposals for traditional fifteen-minute papers at this year’s Irish Association for American Studies Postgraduate Symposium, we will host a roundtable session entitled ‘Inception, Evolution, Completion: Navigating PhD Research in American Studies’.

The objective of this roundtable is for final year or recently graduated PhD researchers to share experiences of how their research, particularly in contemporary studies, may have changed direction or evolved in light of cultural developments: for example, how the #MeToo movement has impacted projects in Gender Studies, or how the #BlackLivesMatter movement has affected research in African-American Studies.

This session is intended to foster inclusive and lively discussion amongst postgraduate and early career scholars in the IAAS community, whilst also offering prospective postgraduate students the unique opportunity to gain an insight into how the PhD process functions in a variety of interdisciplinary and institutional contexts.

We invite roundtable participants to submit a proposal, including a brief description of their research – from its inception, to its evolution, to its completion – and why they think it may be beneficial to share their experience (300 words), by Friday, 18th October 2019. Potential participants are invited to contact postgrad@iaas.ie to express their interest, or to ask any further questions they may have.

CFP: Alternative Realities: New Challenges for

American Literature in the Era of Trump

Friday 13 – Saturday 14 December 2019

Clinton Institute for American Studies, University College Dublin

 

Watching the televised debates between then-presidential candidates John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon in 1959, and reflecting on the growth of televisual media and the gradual transformation of politics into spectacle, Philip Roth observed that “the American writer” was now challenged “to understand, and then describe, and then make credible much of the American reality,” at a time when the actuality was “constantly outdoing our talents”. After the election of Donald Trump in 2016 it feels like, once again, reality is outpacing fiction, with the Trump presidency inaugurating a new stage in the process of aestheticization in which politics and entertainment converge as never before. This paradigm shift—which is not exclusive to the US, but that is especially acute given Trump’s celebrity status and his leadership style—has been sharpened by the disruptive impact of new and social media in the public sphere, bringing to the fore concomitant concerns about the derealization of political and cultural discourses. In a context where the relationship between fact and fiction has been deeply destabilized, writers are challenged to make sense of this new “American reality” that is troubling core assumptions about the purpose and value of literature.

This conference seeks to bring together scholars in literary studies and adjacent fields to consider literary responses to the new American realities.

We are delighted to confirm as Keynote Speakers:

Aleksandar Hemon

novelist and short-story writer, author of Nowhere Man and The Lazarus Project

Professor of Creative Writing at Princeton University

 

Karen E. Bender

novelist and short-story writer, author of RefundThe New Order, Like Normal People

Distinguished Visiting Professor of Creative Writing at Hollins University

 

Chris Beckett

novelist and short-story writer, author of America City and Dark Eden

Arthur C. Clark Award winner 2013

 

Topics may include (but are not confined to):

  • Narrative strategies and innovations in the literary representation of American reality
  • Intersections between fiction and non-fiction
  • Fictional subversions of the “real”
  • The valence of realism in contemporary American literature
  • Literary criticism in the age of “Fake News”
  • Politics of representation, dissent, and resistance
  • Genre and gender in contemporary American fiction(s)
  • Diasporic, minority, immigrant, and Native American literatures
  • Right-wing/conservative American literature
  • The resurgence of American protest poetry
  • The currency of dystopian and counterfactual literature
  • The role of irony, satire and parody in the era of Trump
  • The demands of writing the contemporary
  • Reading publics/audiences and the role of fiction
  • Shifting economies in the publishing industry
  • The currency of prior literature for making sense of the present

Please submit the paper title, an abstract of 300 words and a short bio to dolores.resano@ucd.ie and catherine.carey@ucd.ie . We also welcome applications for full panels of 3-4 papers. We will soon update information on our website, but don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have.

The deadline for paper and panel proposals has been extended to 1st October 2019. Registration fee for participants is €120, reduced fee of €50 for postgrad students.

The IAAS Postgraduate Symposium
“The Land of the (Un)Free: Interrogating Democracy in America”
University College Cork
23
rd  November, 2019

This year, the Irish Association for American Studies Postgraduate Symposium welcomes proposals for papers that interrogate Democracy in America – in how it is constructed, understood, and the extent to which it is successfully enacted. Inspired by current events and political trends within the United States, from the strict abortion laws imposed in Alabama in February, to the on-going humanitarian crisis at the U.S.- Mexico Border, we seek papers that engage with and respond to the paradoxical relationship between the American ideal of democracy, and the actual practice of that democracy. We invite papers that consider the gulf between democratic principles and fundamentally unconstitutional behaviours, with a particular emphasis placed upon undemocratic and authoritarian actions that have both historically shaped America and continue to resurge in the Trump era.

 

“The Land of the (Un)Free: Interrogating Democracy in America” is a one-day interdisciplinary symposium that seeks to provide an opportunity for Postgraduate Students and Early Career Scholars to share their ideas and contribute their individual voices to the inclusive academic community of American Studies across the island of Ireland.

 

We welcome proposals for fifteen-minute papers which engage with the concept of democracy within the field of American Studies, encompassing Continental American perspectives (Canada and South America) as well as those related to the United States. Proposed topics may include, but are by no means limited to:

 

  • Representations of American democracy, American people, and American culture in literature and film
  • Historical insights and social/political considerations regarding democracy and attacks on democracy, political polarization and democracy
  • New perspectives on Alexis De Tocqueville’s Democracy in America 
  • The relationship between American exceptionalism and democracy
  • Philosophical conceptions of democracy and their application in the U.S. context
  • Explorations of democracy in American music, comics, popular culture
  • Issues of gender, sexuality, class & race in relation to American democracy
  • Democracy in visual culture

 

The deadline for submissions is Monday, 30th September 2019. Proposals for papers should include a title, an abstract (max. 300 words), and a short biography. For more information, or to submit a proposal, please email postgrad@iaas.ie

Throughout the history of the United States, various media have been employed as mediums of national and international communication. From presidents, to journalists, to civil rights organisations and beyond, visual, textual, and sound media have provided modes by which groups and individuals have conveyed their ideas, beliefs, and understandings about the U.S. Whether it be books, photographs, paintings, music, films, or a president’s ramblings on Twitter, conflicting and complimentary forms of media have helped make meaning of the “American experience.”

Throughout the centuries, events occurring within the United States have captured the attention of both domestic and overseas audiences. Neo-colonial expansion, the Black Freedom Struggle, and America’s wars – along with contemporary issues including Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, and anti-abortion legislation – have inspired local, country-wide, and transnational commentary. Different media genres have played and continue to play a vital role in the diffusion of news and opinions to the nation and to the world. In the fitting setting of the British Library – which houses collections ranging from George III’s personal library, to multi-media sources such as image and sound archives – this conference seeks to understand how the United States has been communicated across mediums and across borders.

The 2019 BAAS Postgraduate Conference invites participants from all disciplines and fields to explore media forms produced by and about America and Americans, both historically and in the present day. How has the United States been described to itself and to the world, and how have internal and overseas citizens responded? How have scholars, activists, politicians, soldiers, or artists sought to represent themselves through different mediums? How have media cultures been utilised by social movements as an agent of change or for the status quo? How has the digital age altered America’s relationship with media forms? What is the role of international actors and networks in cultivating the image of America? This conference invites an interdisciplinary approach to the employment of media as a mode of communication.

Potential topics for papers and panels include, but are not limited to:

  • Print and visual culture
  • Theatre, music, and performance
  • Film and television
  • Journalism and photojournalism
  • Digital and social medias
  • Race and racism
  • Ethnicity, migration, and diaspora
  • Protest, activism, and social movements
  • Dynamics of gender, sex, and sexuality
  • Issues of class and labour
  • Domestic and international identities
  • Images and imaginings of America
  • Indigenous communities
  • Religion and belief
  • Environmental and climate studies
  • Memory, memorialisation, and commemoration
  • Vast Early America

Abstracts for individual papers should be no more than 300 words. Panel proposals should include details of each individual paper, along with a panel description. All submissions are to include the speaker’s name, institutional affiliation, email address, and a short biographical profile. The deadline for submissions is Sunday 8th September. Please submit all applications to baaspgrconference2019@gmail.com

BAAS is dedicated to fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion. We will give preference to panels that reflect the diversity of our field in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and institutional affiliation. Historically women have been disproportionately underrepresented on panels and BAAS is taking positive action, as permitted under s.158 Equality Act 2010, to enable and encourage the participation of women. For this reason all-male panel proposals will not be accepted. BAAS may constitute an all-male panel or other presentation where absolutely necessary (but any such consideration will be other than via the call for papers procedure).

Travel bursaries will be available along with subsidies to support your own childcare provision. Please complete the funding application form, and submit it along with your proposal, if you wish to be considered.

Follow us on Twitter: @baaspgr2019

Call for Papers: The Heidelberg Centre for American Studies

The 17th HCA Spring Academy on American Culture, Economics, Geography, History, Literature, Politics and Religion will be held from March 23-27, 2020. The HCA invites applications for this one-week annual conference that provides twenty international PhD students with the opportunity to present and discuss their PhD subjects.

 

The HCA Spring Academy will also offer participants the chance to work closely in their respective fields of study. For this purpose, workshops held by visiting scholars will be held throughout the week.

 

We encourage applications that range broadly across the arts, humanities and social sciences and pursue an interdisciplinary approach. Papers can be presented on any subject related to the study of the United States of America. Possible topics include American identity, issues of ethnicity, gender, transatlantic relations, U.S. domestic and foreign policy, economics, as well as various aspects of American history, literature, religion, geography, law, musicology, and culture.

 

Participants are requested to prepare a 20 minute presentation of their research project, which will be followed by a 40 minute discussion. Proposals should include a preliminary title and run to no more than 300 words. These will be arranged into ten panel groups.

 

In addition to cross-disciplinary and international discussions during the panel sessions, the Spring Academy aims to create a a pleasant collegial atmosphere for further scholarly exchange and contact.

 

Accommodation will be provided by the Heidelberg Centre for American Studies.

 

Thanks to a small travel fund, the Spring Academy is able to subsidise travel expenses for participants registered and residing in developing and soft-currency countries. Scholarship applicants will need to document the necessity for financial aid, and explain how they plan to cover any potentially remaining expenses. In addition, a letter of recommendation from their doctoral supervisor is required.

 

Start of Application Process: 15th August 2019

Deadline for Applications: 15th November 2019

Selections will be made by: January 2020

Please use our online application system: www.hca-springacademy.de

 

For more information, please see www.hca.uni-heidelberg.de

For further questions: ibahmann@hca.uni-heidelberg.de

Edith Wharton’s New York

A conference sponsored by the Edith Wharton Society

New Yorker Hotel

June 17th-20th 2020

 

Please join the Edith Wharton Society for its upcoming conference marking the centennial anniversary of the publication of Edith Wharton’s Pulitzer-Prize winning novel, The Age of Innocence. We will celebrate this momentous year in New York, the setting not only of so many of Wharton’s works but also of much of her life.

While all topics are welcome, we are particularly interested in whole panels and individual papers that focus on New York as a geographical and thematic element in Wharton’s life and works. Papers could explore the role of New York City and/or the Hudson River Valley in Wharton’s works, Wharton’s own history with the region, or Wharton’s relationship to place and space more generally. Papers that offer new readings of The Age of Innocence—such as new historical approaches or legacies of The Age of Innocence, the novel’s relationship to other works by Wharton and/or her peers, and adaptations of the novel (for film, theater, etc.)—are also welcome.

Since 1920 marks the beginning of what many consider the “later years” of Wharton’s career, examinations of Edith Wharton’s works in the shifting literary and political foundations of postWWI society are also of interest. The 20s mark the centennial of other significant Wharton texts, and essays that examine these later works are of particular interest.

In addition, there will be a keynote speaker and opportunities for tours of local attractions. Further details forthcoming.

We welcome submissions for full panels of 4-5 participants and roundtables of 6-7 participants as well as individual paper submissions. Please submit proposals no later than August 1st, 2019 to whartonnewyork@gmail.com

For full panel and roundtable proposals, please submit 200-350-word summaries of each presentation included in the panel or roundtable as well as a brief 50-word bio and A/V requests for each presenter.

For individual paper proposals, please submit a 350-500-word abstract, a brief 50-word bio, and A/V requests as one Word document.

All conference participants must be members of the Edith Wharton Society at the time of registration.

For additional information, contact co-directors at email address above or individually:

Margaret Toth (Meg), Manhattan College margaret.toth@manhattan.edu

Margaret Jay Jessee (Jay), University of Alabama at Birmingham mjjessee@uab.edu