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Call for Papers Archive

This proposed panel for MSA 18 will explore the ways in which modernist poets, critics, and academics reacted to and against Walt Whitman, constructing complicated literary historical and social legacies. From Ezra Pound's begrudging acknowledgment that Whitman "broke the new wood" to Amy Lowell's assertion that "??Whitman fell into his own peculiar form through ignorance"? to Michael Gold's claim that Whitman was "??America's first proletariat poet,"? Whitman was at the heart of debates about what constituted modern poetic form and modern social identities. This panel seeks to interrogate the ways in which cultural workers in the modernist era used the figure of Whitman to construct usable pasts, poetic futures, and imagined communities.

Topics may include Whitman's relation to:
Modernist prosody
Literary histories and poetic traditions
Social sciences
Political movements
Political rhetoric
Narratives of national and international progress
The modern university

Please send abstracts of 250-500 words to Erin Kappeler ( or Timothy Robbins ( by April 10. (Note: This is not a guaranteed session.)

Conference Location: Pasadena,CA, United States
Conference Starts: November 17, 2016
Conference Ends: November 20, 2016

CFP Submission Deadline: April 10, 2016

For more information, contact: Erin Kappeler