CFP: Composing Ourselves: A Graduate Conference in Literature, Composition, and Rhetoric

COMPOSING OURSELVES: A Graduate Conference in Literature, Composition, and Rhetoric

Friday, April 16th, 2010
English Graduate Organization
Department of English and Comparative Literature
University of Cincinnati


Many of us have experienced the sense of being put together by the process of putting together.
We have composed, and in a sense we are composed.
–Robert Heilman


This conference seeks presentations that address any aspect of composing, broadly construed as an act of making. We are interested in efforts at composing—creating, producing, arranging, writing, developing, shaping, designing—and in the various contexts and texts of that making, the making of subjectivities, identities, and cultural artifacts.

With import in literature, music, composition studies, rhetoric, identity, and cultural studies, composing can be understood as a central and unifying concept across [and beyond] English Studies. Respecting this diversity of research interests, we encourage projects of all kinds, including (but not limited to) pedagogical experiments and practices; explorations of academic or graduate life; and reflective, theoretical, rhetorical, or critical readings of texts.

We encourage presenters to experiment with the genre of their presentations. In addition to delivering a paper in the traditional manner, presenters should feel welcome to take advantage of multimodal delivery. Presentations might take the form of a PowerPoint project, a short film, an interactive discussion or workshop, some combination of these, or other possibilities.

Proposals for individual and panel presentations might consider the following issues/considerations:
• How literature composes culture/how culture composes literature
• Composing the professional or academic self
• Composing identities
• How literature shapes identities/how identities shape literature
• Composing Teaching/Learning/Researching persona(s)
• Composing pedagogies/composing our classrooms
• Reading as composing
• Performance/feminist/queer/critical race theory
• Rhetoric of composing
• Filmmaking as composing
• Composing in a digital age
• Genre/reader-response/rhetorical theory
• Composing literacies
• Multimodal composing
• Composing narratives
• Writing in English Graduate Studies
• Composing “failure narratives”: learning from what didn’t work in the classroom

Individual proposals should consist of two pages. On the first page, include name, presentation title, university affiliation, mailing address, e-mail address, phone number, and details of any technology you may require, and the anticipated format of presentation (paper, multimodal, interactive, etc.).; the second page should contain a 250-word abstract. Please do not include identifying information on the abstract.

Panel proposals should include a coversheet containing panel title, each presenter’s name, the name of a moderator, presentation titles, university affiliation, mailing address, e-mail address, phone number, requests for technology, and anticipated format of presentation (papers, multimodal, interactive, workshop, etc.); the second page should include abstracts of 250-words for each presentation (3 to 4) and a 250-word abstract for the panel as a whole. Please do not include identifying information on the abstracts.

Individual presentations should not exceed twenty minutes; panel presentations should plan for 80 minutes total (including Q&A time).

Mindful of the financial pressures we all face, there will be no fee to attend or present at this graduate conference.

Proposals should be submitted electronically in .doc or .rtf format by Friday, February 12th to Please send inquiries to the same address.

Please see our Video Call for Papers at