47th Annual Comp Lit Conference – "Drawing the Line(s): Censorship and Cultural Practices"

August 19, 2011

47th Annual Comparative Literature Conference
California State University, Long Beach
March 1st-3rd, 2012
Drawing the Line(s): Censorship and Cultural Practices

Plenary Speaker: Ilan Stavans
Lewis-Sebring Professor in Latin American and Latino Culture, Amherst College

Special B-Word Public Lecture: An Evening with Azar Nafisi

Call for Papers ~ Abstracts due October 31st, 2011

The history of human culture has always been engaged with classifying and upholding the politically and socially acceptable, ethical and moral. On the flip side, it has also been equally engaged with what is deemed as forbidden, shocking, inappropriate, tasteless, improper, reprehensible and even scandalous. Censorship and freedom of expression are not just modern-day issues or debates. To be heard, seen, erased or silenced in written, spoken or visual form has vexed humanity since the Ancient and Classical debates on good governance and freedom of speech. In fact, from early Jewish, Christian and Islamic notions of iconography, destruction of books in Ancient China, Medieval inquisitions, Galileo’s defense of Copernican theory, Counter Reformation, Salem Witch trials, McCarthyism to the Culture wars of the 1980s and today’s concerns about technological communication, surveillance and scientific advancements, censorship has been at the forefront of cultural practices globally and through time.

“Drawing the Line(s): Censorship and Cultural Practices” is the 47th Annual Comparative Literature Conference, an interdisciplinary gathering of scholars, artists, and practitioners from all walks of the arts and the academy, that aims to consider censorship in a broad scale across time periods, disciplines and languages. It seeks to examine literature, images, visual objects and mechanisms, the political and social events from diverse cultures, across national boundaries, and within global contexts.

Among the questions to be explored are:

* Banned Books and book burning
* Censorship in ancient Greek Drama
* Censorship and art
* Censorship and museums
* Censorship, Sexuality and the Body
* Censorship and Surveillance
* Censorship and Visual representations
* Early Roman conceptions of censorship
* Early Modern printing press
* Early Modern regimes and citizenship
* Exploitation, Discrimination and Regulation
* Feminism and Censorship
* Government versus Inquisitions
* Imagined Communities and Censorship
* Literary representations of censorship
* New World Discoveries and Suppression
* Queer Studies and Censorship
* Religious persecutions
* Revolution and Censorship
* Silence and the spoken and written words

We invite proposals for papers that deal with the power and role of censorship and its relationship to the written and/or spoken word and other disciplines and methodologies. Participant from different fields — literary theory and philosophy, political science, history, creative writing, aesthetics, film studies, art history and theory, theater, fine arts, graphic design, culture studies, visual and media studies, digital media and electronic arts, sociology, psychology, and cognitive science — are invited to submit an abstract.

* To propose a PAPER, please send an electronic 250-word abstract along with an attached brief one-page c.v. no later than October 31st, 2011, to Dr. Nhora Serrano and Dr. Nizan Shaked at the conference email: 47thcomplitconf@gmail.com.

* Official Conference webpage: http://www.csulb.edu/colleges/cla/departments/complit-classics/conference/

* In conjunction with the B-Word Project –a campus-wide initiative coordinated by the Carpenter Performing Arts Center at CSULB– conference registrants will receive a $5 discount to attend a public lecture: “An Evening with Azar Nafisi.” The B-Word Project is made possible in part by a grant from the Association of Performing Arts Presenters Creative Campus Innovations Grant Program, funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Website: http://bwordproject.org/