11 January 2011

The Outlaw: Trespass, Disfigurement, Domestication
A Critical and Creative Graduate Student Conference
April 1-2, 2010
University at Albany, SUNY, Downtown Campus

Hosted by the University at Albany, SUNY English Graduate Student Organization
Contact email:

Keynote speakers:

Doug Rice, author of A Good Cuntboy is Hard to Find, Skin Prayer: Fragments of Abject Memory (Eraserhead Press, 2002), and Blood of Mugwump (FC2, 1996)

Wai Chee Dimock, William Lampson Professor of English and American Studies at Yale University

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-“The lyricism of marginality may find inspiration in the image of the “outlaw,” the great social nomad, who prowls on the confines of a docile, frightened order.”

—Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish

What is the outlaw? Today, the outlaw presents us with a number of paradoxes: politicians identify as “going rogue” while the U.S. engages in war with “rogue states”; atlases seem rigidly divided into “friend” and “enemy” while everywhere signs portend the collapse of foreign wars into the everyday by imploring their readers to “Report Suspicious Activity.” The outlaw–and its pseudonyms and cohorts: the bandit, the brigand, the criminal, and the terrorist–circulate in complex, and often contradictory, ways. For instance, the outlaw threatens the sovereign and yet is sovereignty’s possibility. Simultaneously alluring and terrorizing, the outlaw realizes and reorients desires while giving shape to national nightmares and personal terrors. What may be deviant to one is prophetic to another; while silenced as heretic and dismissed as irrational, the outlaw is also the opportunity for cultural, political, and scientific revolutions.

We invite creative submissions that respond to the question of the outlaw, particularly those that challenge notions of genre, performance, and poetics. Creative submissions should include a 150-300 word description and a 2-3 page sample.

Critical abstracts should be limited to 250-300 words. We encourage submissions from graduate students working in any field, historical period, genre, or scholarly discipline.

Submissions should be sent to by February 4, 2010.

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