29.2976, Calls: Ling & Literature, Linguistic Theories/Italy

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LINGUIST List: Vol-29-2976. Fri Jul 20 2018. ISSN: 1069 - 4875.

Subject: 29.2976, Calls: Ling & Literature, Linguistic Theories/Italy

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Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2018 16:25:21
From: Dario Del Fante [dario.delfante at phd.unipd.it]
Subject: The Scarlet Letters: Taboos of Language and Literature in the Contemporary Age

Full Title: The Scarlet Letters: Taboos of Language and Literature in the Contemporary Age 
Short Title: TabooPadova2019 

Date: 09-Apr-2019 - 10-Apr-2019
Location: Padova, Italy 
Contact Person: Dario Del Fante
Meeting Email: tabupadova at gmail.com.

Linguistic Field(s): Ling & Literature; Linguistic Theories 

Call Deadline: 30-Sep-2018 

Meeting Description:

According to the famous definition of the historian of religions Mircea
Eliade, ''what is called taboo [...] is the fact of things', or places', or
persons', being cut off, or ''forbidden'', because contact with them is
dangerous. Generally speaking, any object, action or person which either has
naturally, or acquires by some shift of ontological level, force of a nature
more or less uncertain, is, or becomes, taboo.'' (ELIADE 1958: 15-17). The
concept of taboo was initially used with reference to socio-cultural realities
bounded in space and time, and it was generally perceived through the
interpretative filter of Eurocentrism. It has attracted a growing critical
attention in the last two centuries, thanks to the increasingly relevant
heuristic role assumed by it in disciplinary fields also very distant from
those in which he was originally coined and studied. Indeed, soft and hard
sciences have opened wide spaces of debate around this notion originated in
ethnology and anthropology, adopting specific declinations of the general
theme and, with this, demonstrating its flexibility. Pursuing the
interdisciplinary orientation that characterizes the research activity of the
Department of Linguistic and Literary Studies of the University of Padua, the
conference intends to explore the modalities of perception and
(re)codification of the taboo in the contemporary age, in reference to the two
main scientific areas of address: linguistics and literary studies. By
''contemporary age'' we intend the timeframe that initiates with the end of
World War II and extends to the present day. Literary texts from any
traditions are welcome. The theme, declined in one or the other sense and
immersed in the contradictions that dot the time in which we live, thus
assumes a particular political value, leading to ask themselves the following
questions: which dialectic the technologically advanced homo politicus of the
New Millennium establishes, through language and literary art, with the sphere
of the ontologically ''different''? With which ancient challenges is he summed
to make further compromises? Has contemporaneity been able to neutralize
taboos or, on the contrary, it has created new ones?

Call for Papers:

The scientific committee will consider any contribution inherent to the theme
outlined and related to the different fields of study on the language, as well
as to the variety of literary forms (prose, poetry, theatre, etc.). With the
intention to intersect diversified methodologies and polyhedral approaches,
the following research addresses will be privileged:

- Bioethics and linguistic taboos. Man, language and illness in the
contemporary world: that which ''must not be said''. Linguistic tabulation of
the most divisive bioethical issues (e.g. incurable diseases, euthanasia,
abortion, cloning, identity and sexual fluidity);
- The ''politically correct'' as the creation of new linguistic taboos.
Relative counter-reaction to this trend. Linguistic taboos and their breakdown
as a basis for the construction of individual and/or collective identities;
- Linguistic taboos in translatology: problems of cultural transfer. What must
(not) be translated and why;
- Linguistic taboos between formal linguistics and field research. The
unknown-taboo in the formulation of theoretical models. Linguistic data and
taboos: what must (not) appear in the searches and how to avoid falsifying the

Literary Studies:
- Geographical and cultural taboos: the limits of the utterable within
national literary traditions. The stigmatization of themes, genres,
characters, situations;
- Historical-political taboos: traumatic events and dramas removed from
literary imagination;
- Aesthetic-bodily taboos: formulas of excess and scandal in literature.
Biological, sexual and food taboos;
- Imaginary taboos: invention and articulation of the forbidden in fiction
- Invisible taboos: allusive schemes and escape styles to circumvent the ban;
- Embodied taboos: affirmation or suppression of taboos of the past
represented by mythical-archetypal figures of the tradition (Oedipus, Don
Giovanni etc.) re-actualized in contemporary literature.

Keynote speakers:
Alison Duguid (University of Siena)
Alan Partington (University of Bologna)
Daniele Giglioli (University of Bergamo)

All interested parties are invited to send their proposals via e-mail, in
Italian or in English, to tabupadova at gmail.com by Sunday, 30 September 2018. A
formal request for participation in the conference must be indicated in the
text of the message. It must also be specified whether the contribution is
meant to be a talk or a poster presentation. Two files must be attached (in
.doc or .pdf format), containing respectively the following information:

1. Name and surname, academic affiliation, personal contacts and a brief
bio-bibliographic note (maximum 150 words);
2. Abstract with title (maximum of 600 words for the ordinary talks, maximum
of 400 words for the poster presentations, spaces and any bibliography
excluded). Each abstract must be anonymous and devoid of any information,
direct or indirect (e.g. reference to their previous works), which can trace
the identity of the author. Each abstract will be subjected to a double-blind
peer review by the scientific committee, which will communicate to the people
concerned the successful selection by Thursday, November 15, 2018.

The languages of the conference will be Italian and English. The duration of
the interventions must not exceed 25 minutes. More specific information on the
eventual publication of the documents will be provided later. No registration
fee is required for participation in the conference. The costs for travel and
accommodation are at the expense of the participants.
For any further information, please contact the address tabupadova at gmail.com.


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