New Neighbours in German, Austrian and Swiss Literature, Film and Discourse
An interdisciplinary conference at the Institute of Germanic & Romance Studies, University of London
in cooperation with the Centre for Irish-German Studies, University of Limerick
28 and 29 April 2014
From the CfP: At this point in history after the recent European retreat from multiculturalism, instead of adding to the prevailing perception of a ‘failure of multiculturalism’, what is needed most are alternative visions of ethnically diverse societies. If writers and artists of all times have been credited with a seismographic sense for the core of their societies’ problems and needs, it might be wise to turn to the inherent alternative ideas in their works: to their visions of how multiculturalism could work and how it would not work, to their representations of the preconditions under which acceptance of difference is possible and also to their rendering of the conditions that make it more difficult. While research on migrants’ and minorities’ literature, film and discourse booms, very little has been done on the corresponding works of the ‘other’ side, that is, on the side of ‘native’ writers, filmmakers and intellectuals. Accordingly this conference will investigate how contemporary writers, filmmakers and intellectuals from German/Austrian/Swiss backgrounds have integrated minorities in their literary, filmic and discursive horizon. Contributions should focus on the last four decades of cultural production and might include an emphasis on changes and potential turning points within these years (such as the fall of the Iron Curtain, 9/11, etc.). Of special interest are also comparisons with debates in English-speaking countries, specifically Ireland, in order to compare one of the most recent immigration societies and the discussions brought up in that context, with established discourses.
For more information email Monika.Albrecht@ul.ie<; Gisela.Holfter@ul.ie or Godela.Weiss-Sussex@sas.ac.uk