The graduate students of the departments of Germanic Studies, Slavic and

Baltic Languages and Literatures and Hispanic and Italian Studies at the

University of Illinois at Chicago are pleased to announce their second

interdisciplinary graduate student conference:


Converging Narratives:

Besieged and Transgressive Bodies

March 31 and April 1, 2017

Chicago, IL


Keynote Speakers: Emily Esperanza, Video Artist and Director.

Prof. Mimi Thi Nguyen, Associate Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies and Asian American Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


The interdisciplinary graduate student conference, “Converging Narratives: Besieged and Transgressive Bodies,” will focus on the motif of the body, bodily experiences, and representations of the politicized body in literature and visual arts. Regardless of how they are conceived – as suffering flesh and psyche or embodied subjectivities and collectives – bodies remain the locus and subjects of theory, action, affect, and art. In the context of our technological age, it seems that bodies should be brought together and yet fissures in this rapprochement are continuously revealed. This affects considerations of how bodies of all types are represented, theorized, studied, and transformed in a period of transition. It is necessary to ask the intellectual community: where do gender and ideology intersect when we speak of ‘the body’? How do visual artists represent the complexities of the embodied self? Or, how can writers, performers, or musicians do so? How does the idea of the ‘taboo’ impact self-perception? How can this taboo be articulated within the arts? How is sexual identity articulated by and in the body or in the arts? What happens when the ‘body’ conflicts with the ‘mind’? How do (consensual or non-consensual) body modifications silence the body, or allow it to ‘talk’?

And how might we revive the centrality of the body within the “body politic” in an age defined by the virtual. 


While all proposals on the topic are welcome, we will organizing panels employing diverse tools to investigate:

Instead of traditional panels, this conference will be held in the form of workshops; papers will be distributed beforehand, and instead of reading the paper, we will give an overview and discuss our research together based on the topic of the panel. We strongly encourage proposals submitted by graduate students from all disciplines including, but not limited to, any field in the Literary Studies, Sociology, Film Studies, Art and Architecture, Gender and Women’s Studies, Queer Studies, and History. We also welcome dance, theatrical, literary, and cinematic contributions. Please submit a mini vita (no longer than 50 words) and an abstract (no longer than 300 words) for a 15 minute presentation to [log in to unmask] no later than January 12 , 2017. Pre-constituted panels of 3 or 4 papers are also welcome.

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