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April 15, 2009

Call for Proposals - Culture, Context, and Readership

Culture, Context, and Readership
An International Conference on Chinese American Literature

July 17-19, 2009, Nanjing University, China

School of Foreign Studies, Nanjing University
Department of Asian American Studies, UCLA

The organizers/co-sponsors of the 2009 International Conference on Chinese American Literature invite colleagues both in China and internationally to submit proposals for individual papers on topics dealing with Chinese American literary issues that elucidate the conference theme outlined below. This conference is open to anyone having an interest in the study of Chinese American literature.

Conference Theme

The theme for the 2009 International Conference on Chinese American Literature, to be held at Nanjing University, China, is “Culture, Context, and Readership.”

Questions of “culture, context, and readership” have for some time been at the heart of much Chinese American literary studies. Literally, these categories can be taken to mean the cultural attitudes or practices reflected in given literary texts, immediate social backgrounds of literary portrayals, or interpretative strategies adopted by different readers. At the same time, such categories can also be approached somewhat differently. For example, “culture,” in its expanded meaning, can refer to the complex interplay of ideological codes that both surround and give shape to narrative voices or modes of literary production. “Context” is in this sense no longer an easily identifiable historical referent outside the presumed boundaries of a literary text, but rather something inherent in the text as a rhetorical construction, which, upon contextualization, is always fraught with social and political contradictions. From such a perspective, “readership” is more about the constitutive role of the race, gender, class, or other social and cultural experiences on the part of the reader in determining the meaning and significance of a literary work. Within the context of this conference, the question of “readership” is especially suggestive in that it registers cross-cultural, multi-linguistic, and transnational sensibilities and perspectives across diverse reading communities.

To facilitate the conceptualization and submission processes, we recommend using the following key terms as organizing concepts for your paper proposals under the general theme of the conference.

Key Terms

1. Global/Local Dynamics and Diaspora
2. Memory and History
3. The Body and Desires
4. Autobiography and Fiction
5. Narrative versus Documentation
6. The Question of Audience in the Classroom
7. Chinese American Representations of China
8. Intersection of Literature and Media
9. Cultural Appropriation and Translation
10. Interethnic Relations

Other organizing categories can also be used in conceptualizing paper proposals as long as they contribute to the enhancement of the theme of the conference.

Submission Requirements

Proposals in English or in Chinese are to be submitted to ccrnju@yahoo.com. The deadline for submission is May 30, 2009. All paper submitters should provide the following in the proposals:
1) Paper Title (maximum of 12 words)
2) Paper Abstract (maximum 500 words)
3) Paper Presenter Information (full name, affiliation, email address)

Conference Organizers
Professor Cheng Aimin, Dean
School for International Students, Nanjing University, China

Professor Jinqi Ling, Graduate Vice Chair
Department of Asian American Studies, UCLA

Posted by zzhu at April 15, 2009 09:24 PM