Imagination and the Nation:
In, Between, and Beyond States
ACGC Graduate Student Conference
Saturday, May 8th, 2004
In recent years, the processes, flows,
forces, and trends which could be called "globalisms"
or "globalization," as well as theories surrounding
these developments, have contributed to renewed interest in
the connections within and among America, the Americas, and
the rest of the world. With this in mind, this conference seeks
to bring together student scholars from various disciplines
around the central theme of the national imaginary and how it
relates to the global imaginary.
How do we articulate the "states" we are in-- politically,
intellectually, aesthetically, ethnically, emotionally, sexually,
psychologically-- and what difference might these articulations
make? What exactly is a "national imaginary" in today's
world where the nation-state seems to be increasingly diffuse
and deterritorialized? How do cultural forces influence a nation's
sense of itself, and how do those same forces influence how
nations view each other and the world as a whole? How are political
and economic decisions being determined or influenced by broader
cultural ideologies or forms? What does it mean to imagine one's
self as a citizen in a purportedly "globalized" world?
How do identity politics interact with aesthetic formations
of the self in an era where national identity is merely one
of many competing subjectivities? All of these questions are
merely the beginning of a series of inquiries this conference
hopes to explore.
We are currently accepting paper proposals
for this graduate student conference. Again, we encourage submissions
from a wide range of disciplines and with diverse historical
and formal foci; in other words, work from "non-Americanists"
might be particularly apt, given the fact that we are questioning
the very idea of any single version of "America" in
the first place. All accepted papers will be published; details
to be announced.
Possible topics might include, but are by no means limited to:
Race, Ethnicity and "Imagined Communities"
Gender and Sexuality in a Global Context
Advertising and Commodity Flows
The Media, Violence, and Identity
Visual, Musical or Verbal Aesthetics and the Nation
Science, Technology, and the Nation
Transnational and/or Nationalist Religious Movements
Creating a "Just Cause" in Art and Politics
Image, Empire, and Aesthetics
Imagining States of Resistance
Americanization and "High and Low" Cultures
Hidden or Forgotten America(s)
Transnational Politics and Aesthetics
ALSO: Artistic responses (such as paintings, sculptures, etc.)
to all of the above are highly encouraged-- we would like to
exhibit thematically-related art at the conference. Please follow
the regular submission guidelines for individual papers and,
if possible, include a photo of your piece.
Paper abstracts should be no more than 300 words. All submissions
should be formatted in a Word-compatible application and preferably
sent via e-mail to Elizabeth Freudenthal at
firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject heading "ACGC conference
submission." Alternately, please send hard-copies to the
English Department, South Hall 2607, UCSB, Santa Barbara, CA
93106. ATTN: American Cultures and Global Contexts Center.
Submission Deadline: December 8, 2003.