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Call for Papers 

Authority and Uncertainty in Poetic Language and Practice

42nd Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 7-10, 2011
New Brunswick, NJ - Hyatt New Brunswick
Host Institution: Rutgers University

Authority and Uncertainty in Poetic Language and Practice
Abstracts due September 30, 2010

Marianne Moore regarded poetry's genius for the precise enactment of
ambiguity, uncertainty and absurdity as a tilling of "Impossible gardens
with real toads." That was by way of defense. With similar insouciance
Auden, Stevens, and Williams came to characterize poetry as "the
difficulty of what is to be" or "the finding of a satisfaction" or the
knowledge of "nothing / pure and simple." We seek in this panel to
address poetry's ingenious and sometimes disarming resources for
creating and confronting authority. How does poetry mobilize resources
to address the authority of its own traditions as well as the powers of
the polis? How does a poetry that pledges to make do with "what will
suffice" derive strength and coherence enough to be present to itself,
its hearers and its non-hearers? The panel as conceived will be a
platform for speaking openly about the increasingly more threatened
status of poetic modes of knowing in the academy and in civic life, even
though in recent years poetry has managed to flourish in certain
precincts. We seek insight from poetic tradition about the nature of
poetry's engagement with local culture and public authority and we
invite theoretical approaches based on readings of particular poets or
poems. We also ask what place the repertoires of poetic praxis,
enactment and performance may have in the broader contexts of official
or institutional discourses.

Please send 300-word abstracts to [log in to unmask] and
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Deadline: September 30, 2010

Please include with your abstract: 

Name and Affiliation
Email address
Postal address
Telephone number
A/V requirements (if any; $10 handling fee with registration)

The 42nd Annual Convention will feature approximately 360 sessions, as
well as pre-conference workshops, dynamic speakers and cultural events.
Details and the complete Call for Papers for the 2011 Convention are
posted at: www.nemla.org. 

Interested participants may submit abstracts to more than one NeMLA
session; however panelists can only present one paper (panel or
seminar). Convention participants may present a paper at a panel and
also present at a creative session or participate in a roundtable. Do
not accept a slot if you may cancel to present on another session.

 


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