New Materialisms & Economies of Excess

New Materialisms & Economies of Excess. An International Conference
 September 29-October 1, 2016
Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA 
 Organized by the Department of Comparative Literature
KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: Rebecca Comay, Jacques Lezra, Eric L. Santner
“general economy defines…the explosive character of the world” Georges Bataille
In the past fifteen years, so-called new materialisms have radically reshaped our way of thinking about matterby pointing to an excessiveness that determines the very materiality of matter. As Diana Coole and SamanthaFrost have argued: “materiality is always something more than ‘mere’ matter: an excess, force, vitality,relationality, or difference that renders matter active, self-creative, productive, unpredictable.” At a time where not only the humanities and the social sciences face a renewed interest in materialism, but also whereeconomies around the globe are facing crises brought on by their own excesses, this conference seeks tointerrogate the resources that new materialisms might provide for reflecting upon the ways in which economymight attest, even in its failures, to the co-implication of matter and excess.
The Department of Comparative Literature at Emory University invites scholars from across the disciplinesto submit proposals that, in taking into account the encounter between matter, economy, and excess, seek tocall into question and open new avenues for rethinking our understanding of literature, politics, agency,time, life, and language. Papers and panel discussions (3-4 papers) may include, but are not limited to, thefollowing topics:
– The new materialist turn in feminist deconstruction
– New materialism and libidinal economies
– Beyond/before economy: speculations on contingency
– New materialism and unemployable negativities
– Plasticity in the age of finance capital
– Uneconomical languages: the surplus of literature
– Ancient materialisms
– Base materialism
– Trauma and excess
– New materialist thinking and postcolonial studies
– Biopolitics: vital and spectral materialisms
– Atheist materialism
– The exigency of excess: madness, reason, and writing
Proposals should include: a title, abstract of 250 words, and on a separate page, the author’s name, brief C.V., institutional affiliation, complete contact information, and email address.
Deadline for submission of proposals: February 8, 2016
For more information, please contact Matías Bascuñán, Ryan Fics, Rachel Gardner, and Stephanie Johnson at, or visit
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