Deadline: May 1, 2023
West Point, NY September 29 – October 1, 2023
The United States Military Academy’s Department of Foreign Languages (DFL) invites proposals from scholars across cultural and linguistic disciplines for the Inaugural West Point Conference on Language, Culture, and Military, with a focus on representations of military experiences in the humanities. This conference welcomes multiple and diverse approaches at the intersections of language, culture, and aspects of the human experience with a nexus to “military” (such as but not limited to militar, militaire, 軍 jūn, revolution, rebellion, guerrilla, etc.). From Xenophon to Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Penthesilea to Joan of Arc, Cervantes to Camões, Erich Maria Remarque to Václav Havel, we witness across all linguistic, literary, and cultural traditions the impact of what one may classify as military (or paramilitary) activities on the broader human experience. We can draw great insight from an analysis of these experiences across all linguistic and cultural traditions, as language reflects, constructs, records, and negotiates key socio-cultural aspects, such as individual and collective identities, conceptualizations of reality, motivations, aesthetics, and historical narratives.
Scholars are invited to contemplate language, culture, and the military realm of the human experience in the broadest sense through various theoretical lenses and across all media. Suggested lines of inquiry include but are not limited to:
– Arms and Letters: language, culture, and the figure of the soldier-scholar across regions and time periods;
– Constructions, narrations, and contestations of/by the military institution, including its influence on broader culture;
– The human experience in theatres of conflict, including the derivation and construction of meaning, whether published or unpublished, as depicted through the arts; personal and professional correspondence; memoir; biography; official documents; literature in all its forms; and other modes of communication, such as new media.
The language of presentation will be English. Preference will be given to proposals that touch upon topics that originate outside of Anglophone regions. We encourage the submission of original works. Select works will be submitted to a publisher for a proposed edited volume. No later than May 1, 2023, please submit an abstract of up to 300 words and include a short bio of up to 100 words to DFLConference2023@westpoint.edu.