Professor Clive Webb (University of Sussex)
Professor Nick Selby (University of East Anglia)
A recent report conducted under the auspices of The Fulbright Commission and The British Association for American Studies, American Studies in the UK, 2000-2010, noted how the common perception of a “crisis” in the discipline is belied by the continuing appeal of American topics as avenues for early career and postgraduate research. This implies that in spite of institutional pressures and a changing academic landscape American Studies has continued its tradition of fostering early career and postgraduate scholars. What also remains clear is that these postgraduate and early career scholars will play a major role in reshaping and remodeling the agenda of the discipline to fit the intellectual and institutional demands of a new era.
In addition to this, what Donald Pease has referred to as the “field imaginary” of American Studies has undergone momentous changes in the last ten to fifteen years. Intellectually, various “transnational”, “affective”, “spatial” and, most recently, “new formalist” turns, as well as a well-documented drive towards Open Access publishing platforms, have altered the way in which American Studies functions and perceives its work as a discipline.
As well as being a site for the presentation of new research on American topics, we also want this symposium to function as space in which early career and postgraduate scholars can reflect on their experience as researchers within the changing field. Consequently, in addition to traditional papers we invite suggestions for roundtable discussions, multimedia presentations and self-reflective essays on the experiences of emergent scholars within academia.
Possible topics might include:
• The effect of institutional change on American Studies Research
• New, or neglected, research methodologies in American Studies
• The “affective” turn
• The fate of Critical Theory in American Studies
• American Studies and Book History
• American Studies and Open Access
• Multi- and interdisciplinary research in American Studies
• Early Career Americanists and “The Job Market”
• Funding Bodies and American Studies
Please send a CV and 250 word abstracts by 1st May 2013
For Additional Information Contact
Michael Collins (Lecturer in American Literature, The University of Kent)
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