CFP: Crip Futurities: The Then and There of Disability Studies, February 11-12 2016, University of Michigan


Crip Futurities: The Then and There of Disability Studies
February 11-12, 2016
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

** Keynote speakers: Ellen Samuels (UW-Madison) and Alison Kafer (Southwestern)

When we imagine future worlds, will they be accessible? What might crip future(s) entail? Following Alison Kafer’s “politics of crip futurity” outlined in Feminist, Queer, Crip, this conference centers the then-and-there of Disability Studies, wherein disability is not understood as lack or impediment, but as a “potential site for collective reimagining” (Kafer 9). We seek to nurture coalitions between scholars, artists, and activists who collectively aim to articulate the future of Disability Studies.

We also take this opportunity to honor the legacy of Tobin Siebers, whose foundational work in Disability Studies continues to enrich new scholarship.

We invite a broad range of proposals for individual presentations and for full 90-minute sessions in ANY format, from traditional papers to performances, collaborative panels to workshops. We welcome contributions from all disciplines and global/historical contexts that engage with the future of Disability Studies and/or Tobin Siebers’ legacy in literature, film, art, design, philosophy, performance, social science, and so forth. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • crip time and temporality
  • the beginning and end of life
  • disability and speculative fiction
  • disability and utopia
  • disability and new media or genres of inquiry
  • emerging interdisciplinary directions
  • global and transnational expansions of the field
  • redefinitions and revisions of concepts such as health and illness
  • bioethics, eugenics, and genetics
  • developing medical/scientific technologies
  • new design (i.e. assistive devices, universal design, architecture, etc. )
  • new pedagogies and platforms of scholarship
  • future visions of disability history and theory
  • Tobin Siebers’ life and legacy:
  • engagements with his academic scholarship or personal essays
  • the impact of his teaching
  • personal memories

We are also calling for 5-minute lightning talks presenting works-in-progress related to the conference theme; and poster presentations from faculty, staff, students, and community members, showcasing current, local projects and happenings. Conference participants are eligible to present a lightning talk or poster in addition to a main-session presentation.

Please submit a CV and 250-300 word proposal with title, institutional affiliation, and contact information as an e-mail attachment to CRIPFUTURE2016@gmail.com by November 15, 2015, and feel free to contact us at that address with any questions or concerns.

This 8th annual UMInDS (University of Michigan Initiative on Disability Studies) conference is hosted by members of the UM Disability Studies Rackham Interdisciplinary Workshop, a Graduate Student Interest Group within the Department of English Language and Literature.

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