CFP Negotiating Tragedy at University of Texas at Dallas

Posted on Nov 9, 2017


From CMCS member and UT Dallas Graduate Student Senator Diana Miller

University of Texas at Dallas
Arts & Humanities Graduate Student Association
February 24, 2018
Theme: Negotiating Tragedy
Submission Deadline: December 1st, 2017
Keynote Speaker: Karen Kelsky, “The Professor is In”

The Arts & Humanities Graduate Student Association of the University of Texas at Dallas will hold its tenth annual graduate symposium on February 24th at the UT Dallas campus in Richardson, TX. The RAW: Research, Art, Writing conference is organized by and for graduate students, and offers an opportunity for student scholars around the world to share their work and ideas with their peers across the humanities disciplines.

What is the role of art in tragedy? We seek understanding and the ability to cope by channeling frustration, confusion, chaos, and anger into paintings, poetry, and works of fiction. Capturing tragedy on film, be it a still image which isolates a moment in the midst of a mass shooting, or a documentary that attempts to piece together a war we still do not understand, helps us to observe from a safe distance while aligning ourselves with those who were directly impacted. Historical studies of colonialism, the Holocaust, the Stalinist purges, World War I, World War II, and the Long Civil Rights Movement, to name only a very few events, are crucial to our ability to comprehend, and eventually move forward as a global society. On a more individual level, everyday personal tragedies of abuse, depression, drug addiction, and homelessness are all consuming.

How do we negotiate tragedy? In the words of Robert Frost, “I can see no way out but through.” As academics, we must persist in our studies to achieve a higher level of understanding, to cut a path through the tragic, and lead others out.

We invite abstracts for individual presentations, as well as fully constructed panels (3-4 speakers) that address all aspects of negotiating tragedy.

Suggestions for presentations and panels include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • Anti-semitism/the Holocaust
  • Philosophy and tragedy
  • The Long Civil Rights Movement
  • Coping with tragedy through sci-fi and fantasy films
  • Creative writing (fiction or poetry)
  • Scientific progress through tragedy
  • Music and tragedy
  • Shakespeare’s tragedies
  • Greek tragedy
  • The tragic artist
  • Tragedy and comedy
  • The aftermath of fear (consumerism, baby-booms)
  • Visual arts
  • Digital media
  • Documentary films

In an effort to support graduate student scholars, we will be hosting a virtual workshop during the conference with Karen Kelsky, the Founder and President of “The Professor Is In.” Our workshop will focus on how graduate students can complete the transition from student to scholar. Karen Kelsky is known internationally for her lectures, workshops, and one-on-one assistance available for Ph.D. students entering their careers. You can learn more about Karen Kelsky at:

Proposals are due by December 1st, 2017. Full-panel proposals will be given priority. All proposals must follow the below guidelines:

  • Complete mailing addresses, e-mail, phone number
  • An abstract of no more than 200 words, including 3 to 5 key words
  • Visual art presentations must include medium
  • Panel proposals must also include: Proposal for overall panel in addition to 200 word abstract for each individual participant

All submissions should be sent to

Notification of acceptance will be provided by December 15, 2017

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