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Call for Proposals
Modernist Studies Association
Brooklyn, NY
22-25 October 2020

Organized by Pardis Dabashi (University of Nevada, Reno) and Matthew Hart (Columbia University, MSA President)

The last few years have witnessed the virtual disappearance of modernism as a hiring category across large swathes of the global neoliberal academy. At the same time, scholarly production in modernist studies remains vibrant. Much of that intellectual work, however, is now being produced by scholars with no academic job, an insecure academic job, or an academic job that doesn\'t pay the bills and so must be supplemented by other wage labor. This roundtable will ask what such working conditions mean for the production of knowledge about modernism.

-- How has the intellectual past and present of modernism been determined by the working conditions of artists, curators, scholars, and others? How will that history change in the years to come?
-- How has modernism, as an artistic and scholarly field, been affected by labor organizing, strikes, institutions such as tenure, etc?
-- From the standpoint of labor, what are the benefits and/or perils of modernist studies being subsumed under the broader category of \"the 20th century\" on the academic job market? 
-- How has the casualization of academic labor affected the concepts and methods already used to understand modernist culture? How will it do so in the future?
--How might we integrate discussions of the precarious professional conditions of early-career researchers (ECRS) into discussions of where modernist studies is going in the future?
-- Most urgently, how might academic workers organize so as to secure social and economic justice for workers in modernist studies and related fields?

Please email 200-word abstracts to and by 13 March 2020. The roundtable will include strictly time-limited 8 minute presentations from five participants representing a diverse range of academic workers and subject positions. 

Please note, per MSA rules, if you appear on this roundtable, you may not present your work on another panel or roundtable at the 2020 conference, though you may chair a session and/or present in a seminar. For the full MSA Brooklyn 2020 call for papers, see:

Conference Location: Brooklyn, NY, USA
Conference Starts: October 22, 2020
Conference Ends: October 25, 2020

CFP Submission Deadline: March 13, 2020

For more information, contact: Matthew Hart