Literature/Film Association Annual Conference

October 13-16, 2016

Rowan University

Glassboro, NJ


“Alternate Worlds”


Every work of fiction in every medium presents a world distinct from our own. Adaptations in particular can be defined in terms of their worlds, which provide alternatives to both the world of their audience and the world of their source texts. And some works of fiction invite us to think more speculatively and precisely about what it means to present or encounter an alternate world. Film and media adaptations have frequently projected an alternate cinematic world on screen that re-imagines the past and future. Movies (Blade Runner, The Quiet American), TV shows (Sherlock, Agent Carter), and digital ‘new media’ series—increasingly streamed and ‘binge watched’ on Netflix (House of Cards) and Amazon (The Man in the High Castle)—have been inspired by a variety of fiction novels, short stories, plays, comics, graphic novels, and historical works of nonfiction, memoirs (Bridge of Spies) or documentary (Jazz on a Summer’s Day) cine-essays that mediate and reframe history to portray an alternate worldview which re-imagines the past and anticipates a vision of future events. Digital video streaming and binge watching of films and media also creates an alternate world transforming the cinematic or televisual viewing reception experience. What does this cinematic adapting, re-imagining of the past (or future), and projection of an alternate world on screen tell us about the cultural moment we find ourselves in? The 2016 Literature/Film Association conference explores the theme of “Alternate Worlds.”


Paper proposals are invited from ALL AREAS of film and media studies.  Proposals relating to the conference theme outlined above are especially encouraged, but also of significant interest are submissions on adaptation studies, film and history, national cinemas, film genres and stars, auteur studies, film and technology, television and new media, and cultural or political issues connected to the moving image—including any presentations concerning the alternate worlds adaptations theme and other works of imaginative fiction create in a broader context across film, literature, and media. Proposal abstracts should be 300-500 words in length and are due by June 20, 2016.  Please submit your proposal electronically by entering your abstract on the LFA Conference Submission Form:


The conference’s keynote speakers will be Frank Spotnitz, Chief Executive of Big Light Productions and writer-producer of the Amazon television seriesThe Man in the High Castle (and The X-Files) who will discuss adapting Philip K. Dick; award-winning New York Times and JazzTimes critic Nate Chinen (co-author of Myself Among Others: A Life in Music with George Wein) will discuss adapting jazz to film in the Newport documentary Jazz on a Summer’s Day; and Thomas Doherty, Professor and Chair of American Studies at Brandeis University, an Academy Film Scholar, Fulbright Scholar, associate editor for Cineaste, film review editor for the Journal of American History, and cultural historian with a special interest in Hollywood cinema. Doherty’s books include Hollywood and Hitler, 1933-1939 (Columbia UP); Hollywood’s Censor: Joseph I. Breen and the Production Code Administration (Columbia UP);Cold War, Cool Medium: Television, McCarthyism, and American Culture (Columbia UP); Pre-Code Hollywood: Sex, Immorality and Insurrection in American Cinema, 1930-1934 (Columbia UP); Projections of War: Hollywood, American Culture, and World War II (Columbia UP); and Teenagers & Teenpics: The Juvenilization of American Movies in the 1950’s (Unwin Hyman).


The conference will take place at Rowan University, located in Glassboro, in South New Jersey. It is within easy driving distance of Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and about 100 miles south of New York City, and is served by the nearby Philadelphia (PHL) airport.  The official conference hotel is the Courtyard Marriott Glassboro-Rowan University, located adjacent to the Rowan University campus, where a special rate of $119/night is available to attendees who book rooms before September 15, 2016. Reservations can be made by calling 1-888-236-2427 or online at

The hotel is right next to campus.


The Literature/Film Association will make available two travel awards of $500 each for graduate student or junior faculty attendees who demonstrate a need for financial assistance.  A special prize of $250 will also be awarded for the best graduate student paper delivered at the conference.

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