Home » Calls for Papers


Calls for Papers

Current Calls

MMLA 2019 (Chicago)

November 14 – 17
“Duality & Doubles in Margaret Atwood”

This panel seeks to explore the complexity of Atwood’s characters and works through the lens of the MMLA’s theme for 2019: “Duality, Doubles, and Doppelgängers.” Papers may discuss the dual identities of Offred and the others in The Handmaid’s Tale (the names the women used to go by and the people the women used to be—and in many cases, still are), the importance of mirrors in various works by Atwood, the two narrative points of view in The Edible Woman, or the various other characters in Atwood’s works who have a double character or nature. Papers may discuss the Hulu series based on The Handmaid’s Tale, but preference will be given to papers that focus on one or more written works by Margaret Atwood.

All approved panelists must join MMLA to present at the conference and must be members of the Society to present as part of the Society’s panel.

Abstracts of 200–250 words and a brief biography should be sent to panel chair, Denise Du Vernay, dduvernay@luc.edu, by May 15, 2019.

Academic Journal: Margaret Atwood Studies

From its start in 1984 until 2007, The Margaret Atwood Society published a society newsletter. In 2007, the scholarly journal Margaret Atwood Studies replaced the newsletter format. The journal always invites submissions (from both members and nonmembers of the Society alike). Essays submitted must be the original work of the author(s) and neither published nor under consideration for publication elsewhere. Essays should be focused primarily on the work of Margaret Atwood, between 2,500 and 6,250 words, double-spaced, written in grammatical English, and documented following the conventions outlined in the latest MLA Handbook. To facilitate blind review, submissions should include a cover sheet with contact information and include no references to authorship in the essay. There is no submission deadline; we take submissions on a rolling basis. Submit via email as an attachment to Dr. Karma Waltonen at kjwaltonen@ucdavis.edu. 

All submissions will be peer reviewed by an international editorial board. Every effort will be made to notify authors within three months of the editors’ decision. Non-members of the society may submit work, but authors should be members of the society prior to publication.

Calls Past Deadline

MLA 2020 (January 9-12, Seattle)

We hope to sponsor two panels at the next MLA. Abstracts of 150-250 words and a brief biography are due to Karma Waltonen (kjwaltonen@ucdavis.edu) by 3/15/19. MLA gives priority to panels with MLA members (all approved panelists must join MLA to present at the conference). MAS also asks that panelists at our MLA sessions be members of the society when they present ($15).

Panel 1: Graphic Atwood: Atwood’s Graphic Novels and Illustrated Works (including literature for children).

Panel 2: We are proposing a roundtable discussion of The Handmaid’s Tale sequel. MLA needs our proposals well before the book is out, so your abstract would tell us which lens you will use to discuss the text and why.

ACCUTE, June 1-7, 2019, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

Joint Session: ACCUTE/Margaret Atwood Society

Panel Title: Margaret Atwood in Collaboration

Organizer: Karen Macfarlane, Mount Saint Vincent University

Margaret Atwood is generally recognized for her single-authored works. But recently public attention has turned to her collaborations with artists such as Johnnie Christmas and Ken Steacy in forthcoming graphic novels and comics such as Angel Catbird and War Bears. These may be Atwood’s most recent collaborations but they are far from her only ones. This joint session seeks proposals that address works that Atwood has produced in collaboration with other authors, artists, composers, critics, and others. Papers may, for example, address her early collaboration with artists like Charles Pachter, Maryann and Aryann Kovalski, with composers like Tobin Stokes, and authors like Naomi Alderman. Papers may also address the issue of failed collaborations.

Proposals should be sent to the ACCUTE office by November 15, 2018. Inquiries may be addressed to Karen Macfarlane at karen.macfarlane@msvu.ca. Please send the following: A file containing a 300 to 500-word paper proposal without personal identifying marks and the 2019 Proposal Info Sheet available on the ACCUTE website.

2019 NeMLA (Northeast Modern Language Association)

March 21–24, Washington, D.C.

Margaret Atwood’s Borders and Intersections of Culture, Language, and Peoples

Deadline for submissions: September 30, 2018

Margaret Atwood is a world-renowned writer who has always identified herself specifically as a Canadian writer, even at a time when it was argued (even within Canada) that Canadian Literature didn’t exist. Her identity as a Canadian is important to her but, over the course of her career, her novels have revealed a progression to a more global viewpoint. Atwood’s earlier work might invite analysis of internal borders (between Canadian provinces, between urban and natural spaces, and in the psychic spaces of her characters) whereas her later work more clearly offers opportunities to examine transnational spaces.

This panel would examine Atwood’s use of borders, literal and figurative, and the intersections of culture, language, and peoples that result from crossing those borders. Atwood’s most recognized works, especially recently, are The Handmaid’s Tale and her Maddaddam trilogy. Abstracts are welcome on any of her work(s) but the goal of the panel would be to look at more than her most famous novels and to do some comparative analysis. We might look at her fiction over the years, as well as her poetry and non-fiction. In fact, Atwood writes in many genres and her “borders” between the genres are not always absolute. This panel would be open to considering borders of many types and looking at where intersections result or where cultures, languages, and peoples remain separate and distinct.

More information on the 2019 NEMLA convention and location can be found here: https://www.buffalo.edu/nemla/convention.html

Please go to https://www.nemla.org and create a username account (free) to submit your abstract. The deadline for submitting an abstract is September 30, 2018.

2018 MMLA (Midwest Modern Language Association)

November 15-18, Kansas City

Consumerism and Science Fiction: From Modernism to Postmodernism

Science fiction and speculative fiction have long been tied to a critique of consumerist capitalism. Writers like Ursula K. LeGuin and Nancy Kress have questioned how scientific discoveries resulting in consumable products and technologies (Churten Theory, the ansible, Y Energy) can alter social and economic realities. Margaret Atwood discusses the identities generated as a result of magazine reading. Kornbluth and Pohl describe consumerism in the terms of exploitative corporate practices. This panel will consider how consumerism in science fiction has been discussed in SF over the past century, including thoughts on the relationship of science fiction to scientific discoveries and science fiction and diverse media. This panel is sponsored by the Margaret Atwood Society; papers incorporating Margaret Atwood’s works will get preference.

Please submit an abstract of 250-300 words along with a brief biographical note to Dr. Joseph Hurtgen at joseph.hurtgen@gmail.com.

MLA 2019

The Atwood Society will host a panel at the 2019 MLA conference, 3-6 January 2019, in Chicago, IL. MAS’s panel is entitled Atwood on TV: Adaptations. Send a 250-500 word abstract and a short bio to Karma Waltonen (kjwaltonen@ucdavis.edu) by 15 March 2018. Note: Presenters, once confirmed, must join the MLA and the Margaret Atwood Society. Membership to MAS is $15 a year and can be done online here.

 ACCUTE 2018

The Atwood Society will host a panel at Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English, or ACCUTE, 2018 conference, May 26-29 at the University of Regina. MAS’s panel is entitled “Some books just escape from the box”: The Handmaid’s Tale in Contemporary Culture. Send a 350-500 word abstract and other required documents to the panel organizer, Karen Mcfarlane, by November 1, 2017. Note: Presenters must either be members of ACCUTE or Margaret Atwood Society. Membership to MAS is $15 a year and can be done online here. Additional conference details (and submission instructions) on ACCUTE’s CFP.

Midwest MLA Panel 2017

Margaret Atwood Society is pleased to announce our new affiliation with Midwest MLA. The 2017 convention is November 9-12 at the Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza in Cincinnati, OH. The panel at MMLA hosted by the Margaret Atwood Society is titled “The Handmaid’s Tale: Past, Present, and Future.” Papers on the novel, the Hulu series, or both are welcome. Submit a 250 to 300-word abstract and short bio to Denise Du Vernay by May 15, 2017 (atwoodsociety@yahoo.com).

MLA Panel 2018

MLA 2018 will be in New York January 4-7. The panel at MLA hosted by the Margaret Atwood Society is titled “Renegades and Revenge: Hag-Seed &/or The Heart Goes Last.” Submit a 250-300 word abstract and short bio by March 15, 2017, to Eleonora Rao (erao@unisa.it)

Past Calls for Papers

Special Issue: Margaret Atwood Studies: Ageism and Aging

Margaret Atwood Studies invites submissions of articles that focus on ageism and aging in Atwood’s works or in the works of both Atwood and other authors, such as Doris Lessing, another prolific and influential woman writer who examines these themes. This special issue aims to explore the ways these writers present the passing of time in relation to life experiences and self-consciousness. Articles might discuss the works’ depictions of what it means to come of age, how age and the aging process change how we see ourselves, when and how one becomes old, ways that gender affects the aging process, and how age discrimination shapes societies and individuals.
Submissions due 1 September 2016.

MLA Panels

MLA 2017 will be in Philadelphia in January. The Margaret Atwood Society is proposing two panels–one in conjunction with The Doris Lessing Society.

Panel One: “Humor and/as social critique in Margaret Atwood’s novels, short stories and poetry.” 250-300 word abstract by 17 March 2016 to Eleonora Rao (erao@unisa.it).

Panel Two: “Boundaries of Life: Ageism and Aging in Works by Margaret Atwood and Doris Lessing.” This session, co-sponsored by the Margaret Atwood Society and the Doris Lessing Society, is inspired by the 2017 Presidential Theme, “Boundary Conditions.” By focusing on ageism and aging in the works of Atwood and Lessing, two of the twentieth century’s most prolific and influential women writers, this panel aims to explore the ways these writers depict the passing of time in relation to life experiences and self-consciousness. Some questions papers might answer include: What does it mean to come of age? How do age and the aging process affect how we see ourselves? When and how does one become old? How does age discrimination shape societies and individuals? In addition to examining individual works, papers may also look at the authors’ careers more broadly and discuss how their treatment of aging as a theme has changed as they themselves aged. Send abstracts to Lauren Rule Maxwell (lauren.maxwell@citadel.edu) by March 15.