Dear Colleagues,

The Cornell German Studies graduate students are excited to announce our
upcoming graduate conference, "On Seriality," May 1-2, 2015. Christiane
Frey (NYU) and David Martyn (Macalester College) will present keynote
addresses. Below is the call for papers. We would appreciate it if you
could forward this announcement to the graduate students in your

Thank you!

Will Krieger, Hannah Müller, and Leigh York
Cornell University German Studies
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  On Seriality

Graduate Student Conference

Department of German Studies, Cornell University
May 1-2, 2015
Keynote speakers: Christiane Frey (NYU), David Martyn (Macalester College)

This conference aims to bring together the various angles mobilized by
scholars in the humanities to approach the concept of “seriality”: the
understanding of the series as an aesthetic form with a specific narrative
and formal structure (the serial novel, television series, graphic novels);
as a practice of production and publication linked to historical and
material conditions, or, more specifically, as the common logic underlying
mass media and mass production since the "age of mechanical
reproducibility" (Benjamin); and as a mode of connecting and structuring
sets of similar, related, or repeating events, objects or occurrences
(ranging from historiography to discourses of pathology and crime).

We are interested in the ways “seriality” can function as common ground for
dialogue between these discourses, and look forward to exploring the
intersections and interrelations between different manifestations of and
approaches to seriality, as they relate to questions of repetition and
continuity, singularity and iterability, sequences, intervals and episodes,
conjunctions and transitions, unity and open- endedness. We welcome the
exploration of seriality within the literary and cultural realm, but are
equally interested in the function of seriality within other disciplines
and contexts.

Conference contributions might engage with the following questions:

Series and narrative. What is specific to the serial form that separates it
from a stand-alone novel or film? What is the relationship between two
episodes or installments in a series, and how does a narrative continuity
overcome, displace, or derive from the interruptions between these
installments? How can we understand the different “endings” that are at
play in a serial novel, graphic novel, or the television series?

Series and repetition. When thinking seriality in relation to recurrence,
repetition, and difference, we find series in works of art and art history
(Warhol, Monet), in economic production (assembly line and mechanical
production), in technology (code, digital seriality), in discourses of
criminality (serial killers, serial offenders). Sports teams play in
series, and we speak of a series of (uncanny, unusual, but also mundane,
daily) events. Series can also be accumulative: we gather a series of
evidence to conduct a scientific experiment, to investigate a criminal
case, or to diagnose an illness or pathology.

Series, production, reproduction. Narrative series (serial novels) and
serial production (factories) increase at the same point historically. How
does the development and continuity of a serial narrative account for,
derive from, or embrace the new age of mechanical production and, later,
“mechanical reproducibility” (Benjamin)?

Please submit abstracts of 300 words or less by January 31, 2015 to
[log in to unmask] Abstracts must include a cover letter
with the author’s name, paper title, affiliation, telephone number and
email address. Presentations are to last 20 minutes and must be in English.
Submissions are accepted from graduate students only. Submissions from all
fields relevant to the topic are welcome.

Alex Brown
PhD Student | German Studies
Cornell University | [log in to unmask]

The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
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