WLSC 2017



Conference Program

“Creativity is that marvelous capacity to grasp mutually distinct realities & draw a spark from their juxtaposition.”
—Max Ernst

Conference Date:                              Wednesday, April 5th 4-6PM at the Halpern Centre

As the global migration crisis brings different peoples into contact, cross-cultural interactions have been placed under the spotlight.  In times of social tension, the ways in which such interactions are represented in fictions, films, and images become a measure of humanity’s willingness to forge connections.  Indeed, whilst the movement of peoples across national lines can spur the development of new understandings, and lead to cultural hybridization, what of divisions which remain counterpoised rather than blended, of peoples and values which remain juxtaposed?  Such is our conference theme: literary and cinematic works or cultural encounters which place social and artistic contexts side by side rather than melding them into a single vision of the human.

As a stylistic device, juxtaposition is often used in literature to heighten tensions, or reinforce otherwise fluid borders.  But if the juxtaposition of different cultures has the potential to exaggerate difference, it is also an invitation to promote empathy and to celebrate what is common to all peoples.   Given the potential fallouts of cultural juxtaposition, we invite papers from across disciplines to explore what happens to different human “realities,” identities, and themes when they are placed in close proximity.