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CFP: Migration, Border, and the Nation-State (4/9-4/11/09)

The 2009 Joint Conference on “Migration, Border, and the Nation-State” co-hosted by Texas Tech University Comparative Literature Program and the United States Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies
April 9-11, 2009 at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, U. S. A.
Texas Tech University houses the internationally known Southwest Collections and the Vietnam Archives. Spring in Lubbock is mild and sunny.
Keynote Speakers:
Ramon Saldívar, Departments of English and Comparative Literature, Stanford University
Saskia Sassen, Department of Sociology and the Committee on Global Thought, Columbia University and the London School of Economics

Plenary Speakers:
Alicia Schmidt Camacho, American Studies Program, Yale University
R. Radhakrishnan, Departments of Asian American Studies and Comparative Literature, University of California at Irvine
Xiao-huang Yin, Global Studies Program, Michigan State University

Creative Writer and Visual Artist:
Ana Castillo, author of So Far From God, The Guardians, and Massacre of the Dreamers among other novels, poem and essay collections
David Taylor, Art Department, New Mexico State University at Las Cruces

A Featured Round-Table Session on “the Postcolonial and the Global”
John Hawley, Department of English, Santa Clara University
Revathi Krishnaswamy, Department of English and Comparative Literature, San Jose State University

Proposal Submission Deadline: January 19, 2009

As our age of globalization continues to be defined by endless war and persistent economic crises, migration and border crossing have increasingly become tropes of cultural imagination and sites of critical intervention. Not only has the traditional singular pattern of human migration from the “periphery” to the “core” nation-states been diversified and supplemented by two-way and circular movements of human populations around the planet, but new border economies, hybrid identity formations, growing planetary consciousness, and transnational cultural productions have also flourished in challenge to the nation-state and the capitalist world-system. How have these defining moments been captured, negotiated, and represented in literary and cultural productions? How have creative writers, visual and performance artists, as well as cultural theorists intervened in the process of globalization and articulated their new cultural visions, artistic sensibilities, and political agencies? 

The joint conference looks for presentations that investigate new meanings, assumptions, and implications of migration, border crossing, and nation building as well as papers that explore the representations of emigration, borderlands, and nation-states in different cultural forms, literary genres, and technological media. We welcome both proposals that examine the interrelations among migration, border, and the nation-state in political and historical terms and projects that offer innovative interpretations of cultural productions that foreground the new dynamics in relation to our everyday life, social practice, and planetary awareness.

Possible topics may include but are not restricted to the following:

— Migration, border crossing, and changing family structure
— Migration, gender, and social justice
— Homeland security and the militarization of the Mexico-U.S. border
— Borderland and mestizo consciousness
— Borderland, natural environment, and planetary consciousness
— Border crossing and critical cosmopolitanism
— Border literature, Chicano/a theory, and hemispheric studies
— The fall of the Berlin Wall, the collapse of Soviet Communism, and the representation of the Cold War     
— Post-socialism in China, Russia, and Eastern European countries
— The Trans-Pacific movement of Chinese in diaspora
— Wall Street and the future of “market democracy”  
— Westward movement and American Southwestern literature
— Globalization and transnational American studies
— Human rights and human abuse in an age of endless war
— Postcolonial literatures from South Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and the Caribbean
— Colonialism and neocolonialism in Asia, Africa, and Latin America
— Casualties of war: displacement, migration, and expulsion
— Vietnamese in diaspora and the global memory of the American War in Vietnam
— Transnational feminist and queer studies
— Postcolonial studies and beyond

Please send your one-page proposal and one-page C.V. by January 19, 2009:
Dr. Yuan Shu
Department of English
P.O. Box 43091
Texas Tech University
Lubbock, TX 79409-3091
You may email your inquiry, proposal, and C.V. to Dr. Yuan Shu at ( The symposium information is available on our website: