Appel à communication : « Consent: Terms of Agreement »

We are issuing a Call for Proposals for scholarly and creative submissions for an International Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference entitled, “Consent: Terms of Agreement,” to be held at Indiana University – Bloomington from March 21-23, 2013. Join us for our 10th annual conference, hosted by the graduate students of the IU Department of English. See below for details:

Consent: We click it any time we download a new software program. We are required to give it for medical procedures. Spoken or implied, it struggles to articulate our desires and will. Without it, numerous laws can be broken and our senses of agency violated.

We cannot disentangle it from larger structures of power, either. Antonio Gramsci defines hegemony, for example, as « characterized by the combination of force and consent, which balance each other reciprocally, without force predominating excessively over consent. » The American Declaration of Independence stipulates that consent is required to govern a people; that the freely governed “cannot be taxed or deprived of their property for public uses without their own consent.” As a term, “consent” is something with which scholars and theorists across the disciplines must grapple; a concept that experts, from medical and legal ethics to web and software design, must constantly define and employ in their practices outside of the academy.

This conference explores both the cultural and practiced significance of “consent,” welcoming papers on its diverse meanings and modes of representation: from issues in the consent to be governed to reading a text that resists interpretations; from felicitous utterances gone awry to the struggle for speaking and acknowledging desires between two or more people. Tracing the theoretical, formal, and political implications of this issue requires a variety of methodologies and perspectives, so we particularly encourage interdisciplinary and applied approaches that consider any time period, place, or practice. Below are some suggestions for possible topics. While this list is by no means exhaustive, we hope these ideas might inspire some exciting new thoughts related to the conference theme:

Aesthetic and collaborative production

Reading as consent, perception

Narrative choice, authorship and authority

Canon building, genre

Professional ethics: medical, legal, business, public health, IRBs, etc

Social contract, governing and the governed

Sovereignty, agency

National and cultural affiliations

Informed/uninformed, implied and non-verbal forms of consent


Bodies in contact and intercorporeality

Con/sensual intimacies, kinship

Gendered, Sexual, Queer politics of consent

Privacy, agreement contracts, legal theory

Piracy (actual and digital), criminality, cons, manipulations

Age of Consent

Imprisonment, torture, trial, coercion, force

Public spheres, marketplace

Crowd sourcing, “liking” and likeness

Human-animal relationships and posthumanism

Environmental and ecological resources

Game theory, rationality, suspension of disbelief

Dis/Consensus and synthesis

We invite proposals for individual papers as well as panels organized by topic. We also welcome the interaction of scholarly and creative work within papers or panels. Please submit (both as an attachment AND in the body of the email) an abstract of no more than 250 words along with a few personal details (name, institutional affiliation, degree level, email, and phone number) by January 1st, 2013, to

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