The Kurt Vonnegut Society invites proposals for papers to be presented at two sessions of the 2009 American Literature Association in Boston, MA, May 21-24. Presenters need not be members of the Kurt Vonnegut Society (though we certainly hope they will join). Please send a 250-word abstract for 15-minute presentations to Robert Tally at email@example.com by December 1, 2008.
1. Vonnegut after the American Century
In 1941, Henry Luce famously declared that the 20th century was “the American Century.” In 2007, his own magazine (Time) declared that the 21st is “the Chinese Century” (and the Beijing Olympics may have added the exclamation point). As a chronicler of the American experience, Kurt Vonnegut offers a unique perspective on the American Century and its effects. As “a man without a country,” Vonnegut provides pointed criticism of the very idea of the American Century. How does Vonnegut’s work speak to the rise and/or decline of the American imperium? What is the role of Vonnegut’s work in 21st-century literary studies? What is Vonnegut’s take on globalization? What is the role of Vonnegut in a “post-American” literature?
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