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Call for Papers

June 12-13, 2009
Ewha Womans University, Seoul, Korea

An International Conference sponsored by:
The Korean Association for Feminist Studies in English Literature (KAFSEL)
The Society for Multi-Ethnic Studies: Europe and the Americas (MESEA)

Plenary Speakers include:
Rocio G. Davis, Vice President, MESEA
Hyun Mee Kim, Department of Cultural Anthropology, Yonsei University


Displacement is a central reality and trope for many women/writers in the modern world. Forced or chosen, the experience of being uprooted from home and transported to a culturally alien new territory results in a sense of self that is split and double, both here and there, neither here nor there.

Women have been most vulnerable to the experience of diaspora. From sex work to nursing to child care, migrant women’s labor has enabled the global economy. Women have also often been adept at negotiating with alien territory, giving birth to new cultures and hybrid identities. We would like to focus on the cultural, discursive, economic, and political grounds lived, written, and transformed by women who occupy very different kinds of displacements—migration, exile, or return. In the landscape of these newly juxtaposed identities, there is often no clear-cut distinction between us and them, foreign and native, but rather a cross-breeding that traverses boundaries of class, race, culture, and nationality.

We welcome papers on any aspects of the topic of women, displacement and cultural identity. Papers can be on fictional or non-fictional narratives of displacement as lived experience, or works that deal with the fissured and newly compounded cultural identities that are transforming our sense of a transnational global culture. Papers can also consider displacement within the same physical region but across boundaries of race, class, and gender. We also invite papers that deal with displacement as strategy or promise.

Papers can engage with, but are not limited to, the following topics: diaspora and women’s writing; cultural displacement; language and citizenship; adoption, identity, and motherhood; transnationalism and labor; post-feminist culture; minority writing; the politics/economics of displacement; immigrant identities;women and migration.

Please send a 250-word abstract and one-page CV to Hyungji Park (Department of English, Yonsei University, hyungji@yonsei.ac.kr) by March 1, 2009 (note: new deadline extension). Program decisions will be made and announced on a rolling basis; conference program posted online at www.fsel.org by the end of April 2009.