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Institutionally Speaking: The Object(s) of American Literary and Cultural Criticism

The Seventh Annual CALS Spring Symposium

Monday, March 19, 2018
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, Pennsylvania
Foster Auditorium, Paterno Library


In this symposium, six invited external presenters and an equal number of Penn State faculty participants will demonstrate innovative ways of conducting a socially committed criticism that responds to specific institutional crises by drawing inspiration from an American literary or artistic object of their choosing.  If recent years have seen a crisis in criticism as an institution, the symposium’s participants will model methods and modes for performing critique that make a case for the ability of criticism to respond fruitfully to the manifold institutional crises of our time within and without the university. Read a re-cap of the event here.

Welcome: 10:00 AM

Roundtable 1: 10:15 AM—Noon
Kandice Chuh, Professor of English, The Graduate Center, City University of New York
Brian Lennon, Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature, The Pennsylvania State University
Elizabeth Anker, Associate Professor of English and Associate Member of the Law Faculty, Cornell University
John Marsh, Associate Professor of English, The Pennsylvania State University
Louellyn White, Assistant Professor, First Peoples Studies, School of Community and Public Affairs, Concordia University
Shirley Moody-Turner, Associate Professor of English and African American Studies, The Pennsylvania State University

Roundtable 2: 2:00 PM—3:45 PM
Christopher Nealon, Professor and Chair, Department of English, Johns Hopkins University
Richard Purcell, Associate Professor of English, Carnegie Mellon University
Amira Rose Davis, Assistant Professor of History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, The Pennsylvania State University
Annie McClanahan, Assistant Professor of English, University of California, Irvine
Ebony Coletu, Assistant Professor of English and African American Studies, The Pennsylvania State University
Christopher Castiglia, Distinguished Professor of English, The Pennsylvania State University

Wrap-up Session: 3:45 PM—4:30 PM


For additional information, please contact Sean X. Goudie, Director of the Center for
American Literary Studies (sxgoudie@psu.edu)