Call for Papers: MLA 2005

Each year, the WPA sponsors panel sessions at the MLA convention as part of our Allied Organization status with the MLA. Below is the open call for papers this year's committee has put together. Please note that we're under a strict deadline for submitting this panel. In order to meet the MLA's deadline, we must have proposals in hand by March 25 to give the committee enough time to review submissions. The convention information is available at; this session will probably take place on Saturday, Dec. 30. Also please be advised that you must be a member of the MLA as well as the WPA in order to present at the conference. Thanks to Joe Janangelo, Darsie Bowden, and Becky Howard, this year's committee.

--Chris Anson

2005 MLA Conference: Council of Writing Program Administrators Panel Open Call

Please send your one-page proposal by March 25th to Joe Janangelo, (

Please list your complete academic affiliation and use the subjectl ine: "2005 MLA Proposal"

Topic: "Writing Program Administration and Civic Discourse"

As WPAs, we are concerned with the degree to which our responsibilities engage and encompass political issues. This is a call for an MLA panel that examines key aspects of writing program administration and its relationship to civic discourse. Here are some possible topics to explore; other approaches are welcome:

  • What is civic discourse and what places(s) should it have in the writing classroom?
  • How do issues of progressive and social change intersect with theories and practices of writing programs and writing program administration?
  • How does political activism coincide or conflict with a writing program's (and possibly an English Department's) goals?
  • What is a "public intellectual" and to what degree should a composition classroom or program further this role as a goal for its students and faculty?
  • How has the scholarship of writing program administration (including formal publications and conversations on the WPA Listserv) engaged the project of promoting civic discourse? What areas should be addressed?