CALL FOR PAPERS
PHOTOGRAPHY AND MEMORY
IN CONTEMPORARY GERMAN LITERATURE
Proposals are invited for a Special Session at the 2003 MLA Convention,
27-30 December in San Diego.
Through the last two decades, questions of memory have been both subject
of scholarly scrutiny as well as of creative works. To a large extent,
these attempt to negotiate the remembering of major traumatic historical
events, above all the Holocaust. Although approaches and discourses vary
greatly, the reliability of memory in the reconstruction of individual
and collective histories remains a principle concern. At the same time,
historical facts alone appear to be insufficient in the recollection and
representation of the past.
Almost contrary to the suspicions towards a “historical truth”, the need
to authenticate experience seems greater than ever. Particularly over the
last decade, German language autobiographical and fictionalized accounts
of past lives, events, and places have appeared that engage the reader in
an often unsettling dialogue with photographs and text as they propel a
confrontation with the forgotten or repressed.
This Call for Papers invites proposals investigating the highly complex
relationships between photography and memory in contemporary German
language literature. How does photography function in these literary
texts? What are the present-day implications of such works? Papers may
wish to explore questions of authorship, agency, authenticity and
authentication, reference, representation, post-memory, narrative forms,
trauma, melancholy, postmodernism, individual vs. collective history,
death, absences etc.
Papers taking interdisciplinary approaches are especially welcome.
Panelists must be MLA members by 7 April.
Please submit a one-page proposal and a CV by March 10th, 2003 to
Dept. of German Studies
University of Cincinnati
P.O. Box 210372
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0372
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