Long histories of social, political, and cultural change in the American South and the Southwest have been marked by the need for the regions’ self-definition, efforts to embrace conceptually legacies of conquest, exploration, violence, injustice, exploitation, as well as their hopes and potential for rebirth, regeneration, renewal, reconciliation. The American South and the Southwest have thus been conceived as spaces capable of releasing unprecedented creative energies out of the tensions grounded in the burdens of the past.
Our conference invites new perspectives on the long-established tradition of viewing the otherness of the South and the Southwest and these regions’ continuing preoccupation with their identities, the possible ways of imagining and representing them in historically evolving contexts. As much as these regions differ from each other, they both constitute a challenge to those who enter them – whether to conquer, to take advantage of economic opportunities they offer or be victimized by them, to establish new homes, to visit, to seek alternative life styles, or to confront, factually or imaginatively, any other realities these unique spaces present.
Conference organizers welcome contributions referring, among others, to the following areas of the regions’ exploration:
– accounts of the experience of the South/the Southwest as encounters with national/international “otherness” and “difference” (diaries, memoirs, journals, letters)
– historical evolution of the ways the South and the Southwest have been perceived and voiced by representatives of “local” communities and by “outsiders”
– the construction of mythologies in the process of the regions’ cultural self-positioning
– the South/the Southwest as a stage for individual/communal/national performance of self-reflexivity, self-discovery, self-definition
– the role of literary visits to the South/the Southwest in revealing and (re)inventing the regional mystique
– photographers’, painters’, sculptors’, filmmakers’ contributions to the creation of conceptual and perceptual vocabularies of the regions’ uniqueness
– the South’s/the Southwest’s regional specificity as a challenge to the development of new critical approaches of global relevance

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers.
Abstracts of up 250 words, accompanied by CVs, should be sent to:
Zbigniew Maszewski z.maszewski@yahoo.com
Deadline for proposals is May 10, 2018.
Notifications of acceptance will be sent out by May 31, 2016.
Conference fee:
450 PLN (researchers)
250 PLN (doctoral students)
Conference secretary: Aleksandra Matusiak; aleksandra@yahoo.com