How do deconstruction and Frankfurt School Critical Theory think and write

literature? Over the last decades, the view that literature can be the
object of a

science or Wissenschaft has been questioned. Rather than seeing the world of

literary works as a more or less autonomous sphere that corresponds in

ways to social, economical, or anthropological realities, literature is
portrayed as a

linguistic practice capable of always undermining every theoretical view or

ontological thesis about what literature is or does.

This challenge to Literaturwissenschaft and philological knowledge

relies on thinkers in the tradition of both deconstruction and Frankfurt

Critical Theory, thinkers like Walter Benjamin, Theodor W. Adorno, Peter

Maurice Blanchot, Jacques Derrida, and Philippe Lacoue-Labarthes. This panel

invites contributions that investigate and juxtapose these thinkers’
practices and

theories of reading and writing (about) literature.

How do the thinkers associated with the labels “Frankfurt School” and

“deconstruction” rely on specific linguistic practices in their critique of

philosophical tradition? What productive intersections or tenacious
differences can

be found in their concepts of language or textuality? What aesthetic and

traditions do they invoke or criticize, and how do their interventions work

certain literary forms, genres, and authors? In view of these and other

literature offers a stage on which the various ambitions and models of

literary theory and philosophical aesthetics can be brought into

Chairs: Geoffrey Wildanger (Brown University) and Dennis Johannssen (Brown


Please submit an abstract of 250 words by September 15, 2016 to

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This CFP is online at:

Geoffrey Wildanger
Department of Comparative Literature
Brown University

The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Sean Franzel
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: