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Simpson Center for the Humanities

CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Global Literatures & Global Literacies Symposium

Global Literatures & Global Literacies: Teaching Texts, Old and New

UW, Seattle, April 30, 2021

Proposals due December 1, 2020

This symposium will advance the ongoing creation of a new literature major at UW in Global Literary Studies (GLITS). The planned meeting has two main goals. One is to provide an occasion for all of us at UW to get a better sense of what literature classes are currently being taught on our campus and what kinds of new courses faculty are developing or envisioning for the future. Specifically, the focus will be on undergraduate courses that look beyond national linguistic boundaries. Our emphasis on “global” literary studies implies a trans-regional, trans-historical, and/or trans-cultural orientation. We seek to be inclusive of non-metropolitan, minority languages and literatures, as well as indigenous perspectives. Please note that our priorities also include the teaching of languages or writing in connection with the teaching of literature. The other goal of the symposium is to create an opportunity for networking and pedagogical cooperation among faculty members. Instructors in various departments and programs who teach literature may only rarely have a chance to interact with one another, and this meeting can bring them together to discuss shared interests. All of the participants will receive a modest monetary compensation for their involvement.

The first part of the meeting will be dedicated to two lightning sessions. Each will feature five 5-minute presentations in which faculty members will introduce literature classes they already teach or are proposing to teach in 2021-2023. Each of the two sessions will last 45-minutes and will allow 15 minutes for Q&A. The main intended audience, aside from all of us teaching literature, is undergraduates who may be interested or may become interested in taking literature classes or even doing a major or minor in any of our departments or programs.

The second part of the conference will be dedicated to poster sessions. Here, colleagues who did not present in the first two panels will have a chance to present their ideas on pedagogical purposes and methods. Members of the audience will be free to move around from one site to another, ask questions, and exchange thoughts on teaching. This part of the conference is intended to foster collaborative work. Poster-session participants are encouraged to tackle topics such as: identifying learning goals for literary studies; brainstorming a capstone seminar for the GLITS major; imagining possible internships and service learning for literature students. We welcome presentations on other issues suggested by individuals or groups of faculty.

The conference is scheduled to take place from 1:30 to 4:30 PM on Friday afternoon, April 30, 2021.  While the Simpson Center is the main sponsor of the conference, we hope that all the Humanities and related departments and programs will take an active role in the participation and sponsorship of this project.

Please submit proposals (250 words) with a short CV or narrative bio (no more than 1 page long) by December 1, 2020, to Professor Naomi Sokoloff (

We look forward to working with you!

The Organizing Committee:

Prof. Gordana Crnkovic, Prof. Gary Handwerk, and Prof. Naomi Sokoloff