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December 2009, Week 2


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Bella Honess Roe <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 7 Dec 2009 13:52:07 -0000
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Please circulate widely.  Apologies for cross-posting.

"Environmental Change - Cultural Change"

University of Bath

1-4 September 2010

Call for Papers

Contributions are invited for an international conference on
"Environmental Change - Cultural Change". The event is organised on
behalf of ASLE-UK and EASLCE, the British and European affiliates of the
Association for the Study of Literature and Environment, and supported
by the University of Bath's Institute for Sustainable Energy and
Environment (I-SEE), the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, and
the Department of European Studies and Modern Languages.

Attention will focus on two aspects of the relationship between
environmental change and cultural change: 

	*	the cultural, social and historical framing of
environmental communication, and in particular of discourses of climate
change and loss of biodiversity 
	*	the challenge to contemporary environmental literature
and film, and their potential contribution to ecological education and

Public understandings of and attitudes towards global warming and other
environment-related issues including GM foods, nuclear power and
wilderness preservation vary in sometimes surprising ways from one
country to the next. They also change over time. Apocalypticism, the
environmentalist master narrative of the 1960s and 1970s, has given way,
as Frederick Buell has written, to acceptance of environmental crisis as
a way of life. We have learned to live with a multitude of daily
ecological risk scenarios, preventing, mitigating or simply
accommodating ourselves to them. The assumption that sustainability
demands cultural change has been challenged by powerful resistance to
radical lifestyle change: in practice, environmental problems have
tended instead to be subjected to progressive reframings. Key questions
for the conference will be how historical experience, physical
circumstances and imaginative construction combine in the cultural
framing of individual issues, how norms and expectations change, what
cultural understandings of 'nature' and the human subject have stood or
still stand in the way of constructive engagement with environmental
change, what alternatives the reservoir of contemporary and historical
images and narratives of nature and culture has to offer, and what
rhetorics and art forms might be adopted as strategies in facing
environmental change today. The conference will seek to gain new
insights into the potential role of environmental literature, film and
other media in generating environmental knowledge (Peter Swirski).

Provisional acceptance has been received from the following invited
Prof Sidney Dobrin (University of Florida, Dept of English; a specialist
in ecocomposition) 
Dr Georgina Endfield (University of Nottingham, Dept of Geography; a
leading researcher in the historical conceptualisation of climate
change, social responses and adaptation)

Dr Robert Macfarlane (University of Cambridge, Dept of English; critic
and nature writer, author of Mountains of the Mind)

Dr Timo Maran (University of Tartu, Institute of Semiotics; a leading
writer on biosemiotics and Estonian nature writing)

Prof Robert Watson (UCLA, Dept of English; author of The Green and the
Real in Early Modern Literature) 
Proposals for papers (EITHER standard papers 3000 words/20 minutes OR
contributions to paper jam sessions 1200 words/12 minutes) and panels (3
papers OR 5 jam session papers) are now invited. Topics will include but
not be restricted to:

*	literary and filmic representations of environmental change in
different cultures/ media/ historical periods, and comparisons between
*	myths, lead metaphors and rhetorical tropes in historical
conceptualisations of environmental change, and their role in
contemporary media communication or political/ popular scientific
discourse on the environment 
*	theoretical approaches, especially posthumanism/
postsubjectivism and biosemiotics 
*	the aesthetics of cultural responses to climate change: genres
(especially varieties of Nature Writing), narrative strategies, images 
*	environmental citizenship 
*	environmental activism between modernisation and resistance to
*	cognitive, emotional and cultural drivers of environmental
behaviour, and materialist and aesthetic, secular and religious
*	the global and the local in theorisations and representations of
environmental change 
*	the contribution of environmental literature, film and art to
environmental literacy 

	*	practical demonstrations of ecocritical pedagogy 

The lingua franca of the conference will be English, but (following
practice at previous EASLCE conferences) proposals for panels in other
languages are welcome. Individual papers in languages other than English
will be considered if they can be grouped together in panels.
Accommodation has been reserved on the University of Bath's attractive
campus, which is about a mile from the centre of Bath, a World Heritage
City with Roman Baths and famous Georgian crescents. A half day
excursion is included in the conference schedule, and there will be a
further optional field trip on the Sunday after the conference. Further
details including conference costs will be announced in Spring 2010.
Funding is currently being sought for bursaries to support postgraduate/
unwaged attendance.

Please submit proposals for papers (title plus 250 words) to Professor
Axel Goodbody e-mail: [log in to unmask]
<mailto:[log in to unmask]>  and Dr Greg
Garrard e-mail: [log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>
by 1 February 2010, indicating your IT requirements.

Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite