CFP: “Reading Confederate Monuments” at ALA San Francisco (May 24-27, 2018)

The American Literature Society seeks submissions to a panel at the annual American Literature Association Conference (ALA), which will be held at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco on May 24-27, 2018 (Thursday through Sunday of Memorial Day weekend).

What do literary criticism, literary history, and critical theory offer to our reckoning with Confederate monuments? This panel seeks papers offering a broad array of responses to this question. Papers might provide, for instance, readings of actual monuments—their construction, their location, their design, their inscription, their typeface, their reception history. They also might feature literary histories of the those genres—such as white supremacist melodramas, reconciliation romances, and Lost Cause reminiscences—that continued working on behalf of the Confederacy long after either Appomattox or the Compromise of 1877; juxtapositions of Confederate monuments with those literary texts and films, like Gone with the Wind, that might be termed “Confederate monuments” in their own right; alternative periodizations of the Civil War and its role in organizing American literary history that take into account the recent upsurge in neo-Confederate activity in defense of Confederate monuments; or readings rethinking Confederate monuments by placing them into conversation with those literary texts, like Kevin Young’s For the Confederate Dead or Suzan-Lori Parks’s Father Comes Home from the Wars, that represent the ongoing role played by Confederate memory in American life.

Abstracts (between 200 and 300 words) and CVs should be submitted by December 30 to Travis Foster at