by Amy McIntyre
Rust/Resistance: Works of Recovery
Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE) Twelfth Biennial Conference
June 20 – 24, 2017, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan
Conference Website (work in progress): http://asle2017.clas.wayne.edu
Call for Papers
In Rust: The Longest War, Jonathan Waldman claims that, for those who “yield to rust, find beauty in rust, capitalize on rust, raise awareness of rust, and teach about rust, work is riddled with scams, lawsuits, turf battles, and unwelcome oversight. Explosions, collisions, arrests, threats, and insults abound.” Rust is the underside of cosmopolis. Rust belts follow industry and its corrosions; the parasitic Rust fungi are enemies of agriculture. And yet there is an irenic side to rust: it inspires contemplation, the search for beauty, and the effort to defend what is threatened. As an agent of time, rust sponsors stories of collapse-and-recovery, evolution-and-extinction, but it also questions them. Narratives of progress that see rust as the enemy are not universal. In Japanese aesthetics, for instance, sabi is the beauty of natural aging and aged materials; what is new is not as lovely as what has weathered. In a time obsessed by environmental apocalypse, rust may reveal other trajectories for cultures of recovery. Resurget Cineribus, “It Will Rise from the Ashes,” is the motto of Detroit—our host city.
Long associated with steel, car culture, and the music of Motown, Detroit is also a site of struggle for racial and environmental justice, against depopulation and “ruin porn,” and for the preservation of artistic heritage. A nexus of encounters between indigenous nations and the French fur trade, it became a locus of the Great Migration, “white flight,” and gentrification. Water-rich on the strait between Lake Huron and Lake Erie, Detroit and its neighbors struggle against corroded infrastructure and government corruption. For all those reasons, Detroit is an ideal place to confer about rust, resistance, and recovery. We invite participants to interpret the conference theme as broadly as possible and to imagine their work in terms of content and form. We particularly encourage non-traditional modes of presentation, including hybrid, performative and collaborative works; panels that minimize formal presentation in favor of engaged emergent discussion; interdisciplinary approaches; environmentally inflected readings of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, film, theatre and other media; and proposals from outside the academic humanities
Full CFP available here: http://www.asle.org/conference/biennial-conference/
Panel and Paper Submission:
For additional information and to submit a pre-formed panel or individual presentation, please visit the conference website at http://asle2017.clas.wayne.edu
proposals must be submitted online via Submittable: https://asle.submittable.com/submit
All proposals must be submitted by December 12, 2016. We will evaluate your proposal carefully and notify you of its final status by February 15, 2017.
Note: you must be or become a member of ASLE by the time of registration to present at the conference. Join or check your membership status at http://www.asle.org/.
For questions about the program, please contact ASLE Presidents Christoph Irmscher and Anthony Lioi firstname.lastname@example.org.