#NEPCA CFP: COVID-19 and Popular Culture

A chalk board with Scrabble tiles that spell out "Call for Papers"The current COVID-19 global pandemic has changed life for all of us, both here and in other countries. The extent of that change may vary based on our professions, financial status, locations, health, and a variety of other factors. Yet, it seems clear that the pandemic has had a profound effect on all aspects of popular culture.

With this in mind, the Northeast Popular/American Culture Association (NEPCA) is seeking paper proposals or roundtable participation on the topic of COVID-19 and Popular Culture for its fall conference to be held Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH, on Friday, October 23, and Saturday, October 24, 2020.

As this is a new topic of study resulting from a singular, recent, and ongoing phenomenon, the possible areas of scholarship are many and diverse. A few suggestions include: Zoom culture; what the cancellation of sporting and other events means to society; ways in which artists have adapted to online performance; how cultural institutions are trying to remain vital; uses of Tik Tok; how “stay at home” has affected advertising; gaslighting and social media; the pandemic’s effect on industries such as film, theatre, Comic Cons; the proliferation of “feel-good” programming; the mask and fashion; the changing role of social influencers; the relationship of the current situation to dystopian film, TV and fiction; foodie culture in isolation; and comedy in the age of pandemic. These are just a few of the many possible ways to look at how this pandemic is affecting popular culture. We hope you will consider adding your unique perspective to this scholarship.

Please visit the NEPCA Conference page for updates on all things related to the conference.  To submit your proposal, you will want to submit it here. NEPCA paper presentations are 15-20 minutes in length (depending on the number of papers included in the panel) and may be delivered either formally or informally. Roundtable participants should plan on a 5-7 minute summary of research, whether completed or ongoing, and should be interested in participating in a discussion of the future of popular culture. Please indicate clearly whether you are submitting a paper proposal or applying for roundtable participation.

NEPCA prides itself on holding conferences which emphasize sharing ideas in a non-competitive and supportive environment involving graduate students, junior faculty, and senior scholars.

Deadline for proposals is June 1, 2020. Response to submissions will be sent by early July 2020.  Questions should be directed to the area chair, Dr. Lori Seward at lseward716@gmail.com

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