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Call for Papers



Auch ich in Arkadien. Journeys to Italy in Contemporary German Literature



45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)

April 3-6, 2014

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Host: Susquehanna University



The fascination with Italy’s history, landscape and culture runs like a red thread through German literature and can be traced back numerous centuries. Even in recent times, many authors, such as Ingeborg Bachmann, Alfred Andersch, Ernst Jünger or Uwe Timm, have visited the Mediterranean country to experience the Italian way of life as well as its customs and traditions. However, in their travelogues, memoirs, short stories or novels, the focus is often not primarily on things Italian but on the relationship between the authors’ experiences and the experiences of their predecessors. Thus, when reading contemporary stories on Italy, the reader is more often than not confronted with Goethe, Heine, Shelley or Keats, since the legacy of these iconic figures cannot be denied and has, in fact, become a vital part when dealing with Italy – or so it seems.

This panel seeks submissions on authors of the 20th/21st century who, in their works, discuss Italy from various angles – as a travel destination, as cradle of civilization, as a must for Bildungsbürger or simply as setting for a story. Yet, the question arises as to how contemporary authors situate themselves vis-à-vis their predecessors. Is it even possible these days to write about Italy without acknowledging previous authors and their influence on the German perception of Italian culture? How do writers such as Judith Hermann or Ulrich Treichel in their respective short stories “Aqua Alta” or “Auf der Suche nach Venedig?” find new ways of describing Italy that do not solely employ old clichés or operate with preconceived notions?



Please submit your proposal of 300-500 words to Gabriele Eichmanns ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>).





Deadline:  September 30, 2013

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 2014 NeMLA convention continues the Association's tradition of sharing innovative scholarship in an engaging and generative location. This capitol city set on the Susquehanna River is known for its vibrant restaurant scene, historical sites, the National Civil War museum, and nearby Amish Country, antique shops and Hershey Park.  NeMLA has arranged low hotel rates of $104-$124.



The 2014 event will include guest speakers, literary readings, professional events, and workshops. A reading by George Saunders will open the Convention. His 2013 collection of short fiction, The Tenth of December, has been acclaimed by the New York Times as “the best book you’ll read this year.” The Keynote speaker will be David Staller of Project Shaw.



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.  http://www.nemla.org/convention/2014/cfp.html



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The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: http://grs.missouri.edu/resources/gerlistserv.html