Umass Grad Conference Extended Deadline

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Real Worlds: (dis)Locating Realities
April 16, 2011

“Reality”—as a state of mind or as an embodied experience—is not a unified or universal plane; from surrealism to social networks to the “real” housewives of New Jersey, we are constantly constructing, confronting, and negotiating diverse realities. These varied and often contending sites of reality are sometimes socially accepted and sometimes labeled “alternative,” but they are always central to our sense of self and our place in the world. What, then, does it mean to locate, or dislocate, a particular kind of “reality”? What are the implications of deeming some realities alternate, or altered? What are the different realities enacted within and through, for example, cybercommunities, the space of the theater, dream states, discourses of identity politics? What are the boundaries of these realities, and what are their purposes?

The English Graduate Organization of the University of Massachusetts Amherst invites submissions to the 2011 graduate interdisciplinary conference. This year's conference will explore multiple realities, how they are formed and demarcated, and the problems inherent in this practice. At question are states of mind, lived experiences, and subcultures that complicate or challenge traditional notions of reality and perceived states of normalcy. We urge submitters to consider the multiplicity of realities and how cultural phenomena impact our experience of those realities.

We invite submissions from a diverse range of disciplines and critical perspectives. Projects may include papers and/or panel presentations, performance pieces, and multi-media approaches.
Possible topics include (but are not limited to):
-Film and television
-The stage, theatricality, theater production
-Literary worlds (dystopias/utopias, science fiction, realism, and fantasy)
-Constructions of gender
-Social spaces and institutions (academia, the classroom, politics)
-Representations of madness
-Digital spaces (gaming communities, social networks, internet sex-industry)
-Drug culture and altered consciousness
-Rhetorical spaces, notions of audience, meaning-making
-National boundaries (globalism, postcolonialism, and migrant communities)
-Visual and performance arts
-Theoretical approaches to reality

We accept three different types of submissions:
1. Individual papers/projects: please submit an abstract of no more than 500 words. Include your name, paper title, institution, and email address.
2. Panels: please submit an 800 word proposal for an entire panel of presentations (3-4 presenters). Included in this proposal should be abstracts of all presentations, an abstract of the panel itself, title of the panel, and information for each presenter (name, paper title, institution, and email address). If you are forming your own panel, you have the option of providing your own chair.
3. Performances and creative presentations/panels: we welcome submission of creative works, including creative writing, visual art, and dramatic performance. Please include a brief description of your project, as well as your name, project title, institution, and email address.

Email submissions to moc.liamg|fnocgnessamu#moc.liamg|fnocgnessamu no later than January 31st, 2011.

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