Crossing Borders, Breaking Walls: Movement in the French and Italian Speaking Worlds

An interdisciplinary graduate student conference
Hosted by the Department of French and Italian
Indiana University Bloomington
March 10–11, 2017
map-of-france-italy
Crossing Borders, Breaking Walls:
Movement in the French and Italian Speaking Worlds
For as long as our ancestors have populated the earth, human beings have been in constant movement. In movement, the fortunes of peoples rise and fall, old cultures are transformed and new cultures are born. In movement, our ideas collide, our thoughts intertwine and our languages become our sword and shield, but also the harbinger and sculptor of our identities. But there is also another movement, the crossing of not only physical but also metaphysical boundaries: writers who aspire to music in their verses, filmmakers who capture social changes within their frames, women and other minority writers who break the shackles of traditional images—all souls that are not deterred by the conventional limits of their arts. Borders could be affirmative, stressful and violent, but also fluid, productive and revolutionary. There are walls—even today—that are unbreakable and borders uncrossed, be they geographical, social or creative. It is in the upholding of borders that we confront with the limits of our existence; it is in the breaking of walls that we evolve as a species and reinvent our identities as human beings.
Possible areas of reflection:
o   Activism in literature/art/music/cinema and documentary
o   African studies
o   Bilingualism
o   Colonialism/Post-colonialism/Neo-colonialism
o   Crossovers between genres and medias
o   Exoticism/Orientalism
o   Expatriate writer/artists/musicians/filmmakers
o   Folklore/Folk art/Folk music or ethnomusicology
o   Transgendered identity
o   Immigration/refugee issues today and in history
o   Language varieties and contact
o   Migration and estrangement
o   National identity
o   Religious/ethnical contact and conflicts
o   Translation
o   Transnational cinema and literature
o   Travel literature
o   Women and other minority writers/artists/musicians/filmmakers
We welcome submissions from graduate students. Presentations may be in English, French or Italian and should not exceed 20 minutes. Please send abstracts (200/300 words) to iufritgsoconf@gmail.com by January 20, 2017. Let us know if you have any requests for technology or special arrangements, and we will do our best to accommodate them. In addition to your abstract, please include your presentation title, name, contact information, institutional/departmental affiliation and research interests.
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