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SWES 2016 : 21st Southwest English Symposium | Keynote: Dr. Ian Bogost


When Feb 20, 2016 - Feb 20, 2016
Where Arizona State University
Submission Deadline Nov 15, 2015
Categories    english   multimedia   humanities   linguistics

Call For Papers

Objects & Commodities
The 21st Southwest English Symposium at Arizona State University
February 20, 2016
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Ian Bogost
Ivan Allen College Distinguished Chair in Media Studies and Professor of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology

**Update: Submission Deadline Extended to November 1st, 2015

We are excited to close out this year's symposium with a poetry reading at a local pub! Attendees are also invited to share their works there, please check out our website or contact us at for more information.

Funding: We know that conference travel is expensive, so we are happy to offer some funding to our conference attendees. Registered attendees will be entered in a raffle to win back their registration fee, and we also have a small travel grant for which registered attendees may apply.

Our 2016 theme allows for a myriad of interpretations as we take into consideration the various permutations of both “object” and “commodity.” What does it mean to think objectively, be objective, to objectify, and to be objectified? What is considered a commodity, how do we commodify, and who is commodified? We encourage a diverse range of proposals under the umbrella of the Humanities including (but not limited to) film analysis, creative writing, poetry, linguistic analysis, literary scholarship, rhetorical analysis, and/or multimodal presentations. This theme should encourage a questioning of societal views and display the unique perspective of a Humanities scholar.

We selected the theme of Objects & Commodities because because both “objects” and “commodities” are loaded terminology concerning things, people, and ways of knowing and so open many avenues of exploration. We are interested in seeing a variety of proposals focusing on the ways that objects get represented in fiction, nonfiction, pedagogical, and academic texts, creative writing, and film. Presentations could focus on the many narratives that are told about, of, and through objects. We invite proposals involving but not limited to the following:

-Literary themes of greed and desire
-Emotional attachment to objects
-Textual objects and/or texts-as-object
-How objects “seem to be ‘alive’ and have ‘bodies,’ and... serve as embodiments, or material extensions, of their makers” (Horton and Gordon 109).
-Cultural, familial, and/or societal histories or biographies of objects
-The transition/line between an object and a commodity
-Objectification of women and men in today’s media
-Commodification of people in digital and physical spaces
-Bitcoin as an online commodity
-Analysis of texts or films that value objects and commodities
-Mediation of objects and commodities
-Material culture theory
-Multimedia presentations or analysis of objects and commodities in films, online videos, video games, and/ or TV shows.

We welcome scholars from a variety of disciplines to submit proposals. Abstracts should be 200-250 words in length. Proposals are due by October 15th, 2015.

Submit your proposal here:
For more information see:

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