British Association for American Studies


CfP: The Fourth Faulkner Studies in the UK Colloquium: Faulkner, Transgressive Fiction, Postmodernism (Online)

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CfP: The Fourth Faulkner Studies in the UK Colloquium: Faulkner, Transgressive Fiction, Postmodernism (Online)

November 16, 2020

Conference will take place January 29th and 30th, 2021, online via Zoom


William Faulkner (1897-1962) has long been considered one of the foremost modernist authors to emerge from the United States. Faulkner’s authorial obsessions have typically been described as including time, history, and the fraught definition of “Southernness” in the aftermath of the Civil War, emancipation, and the quest for Civil Rights. However, starting with the publication of the edited volume Faulkner and Postmodernism (1997), critics have sought to recontextualise Faulkner as a “postmodernist” and even “transgressive” author, whose work explores the darker side of humanity and sets a precedent for writers including William S. Burroughs and Cormac McCarthy to explore the nature of sexuality, racial identity, violence, and much more. This conference builds upon these developing scholarly concerns, working to show that Faulkner is no mere regional or even traditionally modernist author who is fixated solely upon his “postage stamp of native soil.”


The organisers invite 20-minute papers on any topic related to Faulkner, transgressive fiction, and postmodernism (in whichever way the applicant chooses to define or interpret those terms), including but not limited to:


  • Faulkner’s presentations of murder, lynching, and violence
  • Incest in Faulkner’s novels
  • Faulkner’s depictions of race and racism
  • Faulkner’s emphasis on sexuality and/or sexually “deviant” behaviour
  • Faulkner’s depictions of mental illness and/or the asylum
  • Criminality and incarceration in Faulkner’s later novels and short stories
  • Faulkner’s evolving attitude towards death, suicide, and necropolitics in his work and life
  • Faulkner, religion, and the afterlife
  • Faulkner, Hollywood, popular culture, and/or new technologies
  • Faulkner and the Grove and/or Olympia Presses
  • Faulkner and literary theory (Foucault, Lacan, Derrida, etc)
  • New readings of As I Lay Dying, Sanctuary, and Light in August
  • Comparisons between Faulkner and: Samuel Richardson; Laurence Sterne; the Marquis de Sade; Radclyfe Hall; Georges Bataille; Duane Barnes; Samuel Beckett; Henry Miller; Jean Rhys; William S. Burroughs; Hubert Selby, Jr.; Vladimir Nabokov; Yukio Mishima; Toni Morrison; Kathy Acker; Cormac McCarthy; Kazuo Ishiguro; David Foster Wallace; Bret Easton Ellis; Chuck Palahniuk; Tracy Letts; Ali Smith, and countless more.


The Faulkner Studies in the UK Research Network is dedicated to soliciting papers from scholars who reflect the diversity of Faulkner Studies in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, institutional affiliation, and locality. The organisers aim to include a mix of participants from across the career spectrum (from under- and post-graduate students to full professors). All are welcome to apply.


Please submit a c. 250 word proposal to the event organiser, Dr Ahmed Honeini, at ahmed.honeini.2015@live.rhul.ac.uk by November 16th, 2020. Successful applicants will be informed of their acceptance by November 23rd, 2020. Follow us on Twitter: @Faulkner_UK


The Faulkner Studies in the UK Research Network
View Organiser Website