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GERMAN-CFP-L  October 2006

GERMAN-CFP-L October 2006

Subject:

CFP: Contesting Transoceanic Natural Histories (11/1/06; ACLA, 4/19/07-4/22/07)

From:

Megan McKinstry <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

German Studies CFP Forum <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 5 Oct 2006 12:03:21 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (119 lines)

>
>Subject: CFP: Contesting Transoceanic Natural 
>Histories (11/1/06; ACLA, 4/19/07-4/22/07)
>From: "ADAM MIYASHIRO" <[log in to unmask]>
>
>Contesting Transoceanic Natural Histories
>
>Seminar Organizers: Adam Miyashiro and Oscar Fernandez
>Affiliations: The Pennsylvania State University and Portland State University
>
>The American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA)
>Annual Meeting 2007: Puebla, Mexico
>
>April 19-22, 2007
>Submission Deadline: November 1, 2006
>
>Description: This interdisciplinary panel seeks to address
>critical issues in the theory and practice of ĺ─˙natural history,ĺ─¨ a formal
>mode of encyclopedic writing that described everything perceived as
>ĺ─˙naturalĺ─¨ from the perspective of their writers.
>
>We seek to situate natural history more broadly in global
>geographies and texts (transoceanic includes the 
>Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean,
>Indian Ocean, Mediterranean Sea, and the North Sea). We are particularly
>interested in the intersections of natural history, science, and humanism and
>the ways in which ĺ─˙natural history,ĺ─¨ as an 
>intellectual enterprise, has been
>critiqued by writers of all periods and all locations. We are interested in
>looking at a wide range of cultural productions that utilize the discourses of
>natural history. Texts may include (but are not limited to) natural histories
>and encyclopedias, travel narratives, medical treatises and scientific texts,
>and maritime narratives. We are also seeking 
>papers on topics relating to other
>manifestations of natural history, such as 
>museums, libraries, exhibitions, and
>the visual arts. This panel aims to articulate the project of natural history
>as fundamental in understanding competing models of alterity in its broadest
>conceivable range.
>
>We are casting our net widely to investigate the temporal
>and geographical range presented by this topic. 
>In the ancient world, Pliny the
>Elderĺ─˘s first-century Historia Naturalis (Natural History), the first formal
>western natural history, imparted cultural information - much of it fabricated
>and derived from his Greek predecessors Ctesias 
>and Megasthenes, among others -
>as well as descriptions of ĺ─˙naturalĺ─¨ geographies, spectacles, marvels, and
>foreign populations. The orderings of natural 
>history have bequeathed to us the
>western ideas of biological and scientific taxonomies and contained the
>emergence of European anthropology, ethnography, and the human and natural
>sciences. Description, the modus operandi of natural history, and not
>experimentation, marks the systematic work of natural historians. Visions,
>spectacles, and speculations thus frame both natural history and European
>theories on ĺ─˙otherworldlyĺ─¨ flora, fauna, and culture, which especially
>follows the classical etymology of ĺ─˙theoryĺ─¨ 
>as a visual account rendered by
>eyewitness ĺ─˙theoroiĺ─¨ of the Greek city-states.
>
>Such European visions and theories of distant locations
>were contested, however, by many authors throughout the centuries. The Mexican
>writer Francisco Clavijero (1731-1787), for example, who spent part of his
>youth in Puebla studying grammar at the college 
>of San Jerłänimo and philosophy
>at the college of San Ignacio, disputes the model of New World enervation so
>prevalent during the Enlightenment in his 
>Ancient History of Mexico, written in
>exile after the suppression and expulsion of Jesuits (1767).
>
>This panel asks a few questions about natural 
>historyĺ─˘s overall project: what
>is the relationship between natural history and empire? What are the political
>and cultural aims of describing the natural surroundings of distant
>populations? What spectacles are encountered and how are they constructed as
>cultural knowledge?
>
>Possible topics may include, but are not limited to, the
>following:
>
>-Cultural geographies in modern and pre-modern texts
>and theories
>- Anthropology, ethnology/ethnography, and cartography
>- Cultural and natural history
>- Flora and fauna, and the human orderings of ĺ─˙naturalĺ─¨
>geographies
>- Natural history: sources, contexts, and its 
>relation to philosophy and science
>- Epistemologies of nature in critical contexts, ancient and modern
>- Encyclopedias: their support for, and their critique of, imperial knowledge
>- The ĺ─˙natural sciencesĺ─¨ and humanisms
>- The politics of natural history - gender, race, ethnicity, and
>ĺ─˙naturalnessĺ─¨
>- Natural histories of Polynesia, Micronesia, 
>and the South Pacific by European,
>American, and Asian writers
>- Pre-modern natural history: Pliny the Elder, Isidore of Seville, medieval
>bestiaries and encyclopedias
>- Early modern natural historical texts: e.g., Jose de Acostaĺ─˘s Natural and
>Moral History of the Indies, Andre Thevetĺ─˘s Les Singularitez de la France
>Antarctique, the Comte de Buffonĺ─˘s Histoire Naturelle
>
>Papers in Spanish or English are welcomed.
>
>Submit abstracts by November 1, 2006 at
><http://dev.cdh.ucla.edu/acla2007/?p=118>
>
>For questions on submission, email Adam Miyashiro
><[log in to unmask]> or Oscar Fernandez <[log in to unmask]>
>
>For general questions about the ACLA 2007 Conference, visit
>the conference home page at <http://acla2007.complit.ucla.edu/>

*******************
The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Megan McKinstry
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: http://www.missouri.edu/~graswww/resources/gerlistserv.html

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