CALL FOR PAPERS! ‘Contemporary Women’s Writing: Apocalyptic Narratives’

by Sunday 15 January 2017

An open call for contributions to the following panel session, to take place at the  conference (Newcastle Upon Tyne, 5-7 July 2017):

 ‘Contemporary Women’s Writing: Apocalyptic Narratives’

Session Chair: Fiona Tolan

The contemporary moment, it seems, lends itself to apocalyptic narratives. Environmental damage and extreme weather events; the shifting of the political mainstream to the far reaches of left and right; the financial crash and the exposed vulnerabilities of a globalised economy; the migrant crisis and mass displacement of populations: real world events repeatedly contribute to a pervasive sense of anxiety and crisis that is productively explored in contemporary women’s writing. From the commodification of the biosciences in Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake, to the falling birth rate and falling temperatures of Maggie Gee’s The Ice People, contemporary women writers engaged in speculative fictions repeatedly utilise images of crisis and threat to explore political and cultural anxieties.

This panel brings together scholars interested in representations of apocalypse and apocalyptic scenarios in contemporary women’s writing. We invite contributions for papers that address women writers’ figuring of apocalyptic fictions in terms of themes such as (although not limited to):

  • Ecological disaster narratives
  • Post-humanism and cyborg identities
  • Globalisation and financial instability
  • New sciences and the reconfiguring of the ‘natural’
  • Threats to the body and bodily autonomy
  • Narratives of violence and threat
  • Reimagining identity politics in unstable futures

Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words, plus a brief biographical note, to by 15 January 2017.


About Pin-chia Feng

Pin–chia Feng is Chair Professor of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at National Chiao Tung University (NCTU), Research Fellow of the Institute of European and American Studies, Academia Sinica (joint appointment) and adjunct Distinguished Chair Professor of Chung Hua University. Currently she is also the director of NCTU’s Asian American Studies Research Center. Feng was NCTU’s Provost of Academic Affairs, Chair of NCTU’s Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, President of the Comparative Literature Association of ROC (2005-2008), President of the Association of English and American Literature (2009-2011, 2014-2015), convener of foreign literature discipline of Taiwan’s National Science Council (NSC, now Ministry of Science and Technology; 2010-2013), and a recipient of the 2007, 2010, and 2013 NSC Outstanding Research Award as well as the 2015 Academic Award of the Ministry of Education. Her monograph, Diasporic Representations: Reading Chinese American Women’s Fiction, was awarded Academia Sinica’s Scholarly Monograph Award in the Humanities and Social Sciences (2012). Feng received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1994). She writes on issues of gender, race, and representation in films, graphic narratives, as well as in Asian American, African American and Afro-Caribbean literatures.