Forum "German to 1700" (MLA 2022)
The Modern Language Association (MLA) will hold its 2022 Annual Convention in Washington, D.C., from 6 to 9 January, 2022.
Every year, the MLA Forum “German to 1700” hosts a series of panels dedicated to the field of Medieval and Early Modern German Studies. In order to foster transatlantic cooperation and partnership in Medieval and Early Modern Studies, we specifically welcome submissions from scholars outside of North America. We also strongly encourage graduate students to apply.
For the 2022 MLA Convention, we invite submissions to one of the following panels.
1. Medieval and Early Modern Boundary Crossings
We invite proposals for papers that focus on the myriad connections between multilingual and often peripatetic German poets, dramatists, and prose writers with literary works originating elsewhere in Europe, and in turn, the engagement of German writers in literary life across the continent. We seek to move beyond familiar questions of literary influence, or the probing of the various ancient, medieval, and Renaissance sources that informed German literary works, to uncover moments of intercultural literary and intellectual exchange between the German lands, Europe, and the world. Papers are welcome on any aspect concerning the interconnections between German and European literary practice that reveal German literature as an integral component of medieval and early modern European letters. Questions may concern such topics as the role of translation in creating and exporting German and Neo-Latin literature; the interconnections between German and European members of the respublica litteraria; varieties of multilingualism among German writers; movement of German writers across European and global boundaries; the contribution of non-German residents in the German states to the shaping of German literature; and conversely the engagement of German writers with the development of Latin and vernacular writing in other European lands and beyond. We particularly seek papers on German writers who regularly cross linguistic and geographic boundaries to shape a new transregional or transnational literary idiom. Please send 150-word abstract, 50-word CV, and audio-visual requirements to Alison Beringer (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Alexandra Sterling-Hellenbrand (email@example.com) by March 15, 2021.
2. Open Session in Pre-Modern German Literature and Culture
We invite papers on current research in German literature or culture before 1700. We are particularly interested in research that poses questions, explores topics, or uses theoretical frameworks that foreground new directions in the field. Scholars of all disciplines (including, but not limited to, literature, history, art history, religion, music, gender studies, media studies), and at all stages of their careers are encouraged to submit. Please send 150-word abstract, 50-word CV, and audio-visual requirements to Alison Beringer (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Alexandra Sterling-Hellenbrand (email@example.com) by March 15, 2021.
3. Truth, Trust, and Tall Tales many (Sponsored by SGRABL, the Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature)
In the absence of reliable strategies of verifying truth claims, truth telling was an important social category in the early modern world. Testimony and authority played critical roles in establishing a truthful reality and in procuring accepted knowledge, which had a moral dimension defined by trust. Both trusting others and being trusted therefore were precious social goods. The difficulty of verifying truth claims opened a space for play with these norms and even for transgression against them. This space was used ironically or deceptively by all agents involved in the literary process--authors, printers, book illustrators, and book designers. They employed a range of strategies to manipulate the perceptions of their audiences and to create false realities. Such strategies include, for example, unreliable narrators, deceptive plot devices, selective representation, page layout, and so on. This session seeks to explore the tension between the need for truth-telling and the penchant for lies and deceptions we commonly encounter in early modern German literary texts. Please send 150-word abstract, 50-word CV, and audio-visual requirements to Peter Hess (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Alison L. Beringer (email@example.com) by March 15, 2021.