Member Services

Modernist Faces

This panel examines connections between modernist constructions of the face as it conventionally consolidated an individual organized around personality and subjectivity, along with the more general modernist critique of anthropomorphism in art and literature. As Rei Terada has observed, the face, with its “alleged ability to externalize invisible emotions,” is the consistent visual subject of hermeneutic inquiry (53). Similarly, Tom Gunning has argued that in western culture, the “expressive human face” has served “as a pivot between individuality and typicality, expression and destiny, body and soul” (1). In Anatomy of the Passions, François Delaporte historicizes this function of the face in more detail, claiming that the face did not exist before Darwin and the French anatomist Guillaume-Benjamin Duchenne, even though it had long been the subject of aesthetic inquiry and debate by figures such as Descartes and Le Brun. We welcome papers examining any of these or related aspects of the face, historical or theoretical. We also welcome papers on related topics. Of particular interest is the relation between face and expression, authorial or poetic voice, and modernist anti-humanism more generally. Please send 150-200 word abstracts and a brief bio to Rochelle Rives (rrives@bmcc.cuny.edu) by Wed, April 13, 10 pm!

Conference Location: Buffalo, USA
Conference Starts: October 06, 2011
Conference Ends: October 09, 2011

CFP Submission Deadline: April 14, 2011

For more information, contact: Rochelle Rives

Back to Main Index