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51st Annual Comparative Literature Conference: Mind, Body, Behavior: Health, Illness, and Representation

April 27-28, 2016 California State University, Long Beach

Health has been a concern of representation from the earliest known images and narratives, and remains a topical subject. Representations related to the body, the mind, illness, trauma, bodily transformation, psychological stress, personal relationships, and many aspects of human behavior, represent how individuals and communities form their identities, how they cope with stress, distress, physical and psychological health. Interdisciplinary and comparative methodologies can fruitfully address literary and cultural representations of medical states and situations, lifespan development, ethics and education, and empathy issues. We invite abstracts (max. 250 words) for 15-20 minute individual presentations or one-hour panel discussions with up to 4 speakers on any topic that is appropriate to the theme. A proposal could be an interpretation of a single text, a comparison of multiple texts, or a thematic or theoretical exploration.Examples of potential papers/panels:

• Literary and cultural representations of medicine
• Illness narratives
• Stories of resilience and perseverance
• Graphic Medicine
• Comparisons of narrative styles (i.e., in adaptation from text to screen , such as Love in the Time of Cholera, or The Fault in Our Stars)
• Medicine in the Classical World, the Medieval World, the Renaissance, the Enlightenment
• Cultural Representation and Public Health Issues
• Metaphors of Medicine (cyborgs and the posthuman, zombie apocalypse, dystopian worlds)

In addition to these potential topics, we are particularly interested in examples of effective interdisciplinary research and analysis, in Comparative Literature or other academic fields.

Send your proposals to

Abstract Deadline: March 15, 2016


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