© 2014 Langston Hughes Society                                                                             Mailing Address: P.O. Box 47548
           Webmaster: lhsociety.president@gmail.com                                                                       Windsor Mill, MD 21244-9998
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THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF 

THE LANGSTON HUGHES SOCIETY

Since 1981

past Calls For Papers and Conferences

2019 Calls for Papers

 

2017 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2018 ALA Annual Convention

May 24-27, 2018

San Francisco, CA

One of the most prolific and inspiring authors of the twentieth century, Langston Hughes, the first African-American author to make his living solely by his pen, inherently helped foster a generation of writers and creative thinkers who worked not only to capture the breadth of the Black experience in the United States but to also honor that tom-tom of jazz beating in the African-American soul. In Spring 1964, for instance, Hughes visited the campus of Lincoln University, where he met with budding poets like Everett Hoagland—eventual poet laureate of New Bedford and recipient of the Langston Hughes Society Award—to offer brief critiques of their poetry-in-progress. In response, Hoagland noted that “[m]eeting Hughes contributed to a sense of identity for me. Until then, I’d considered myself someone who was capable of writing poetry, but not necessarily a poet. After I met Hughes, I began to think maybe I was a poet.” Similarly, Nikky Finney—winner of the 2011 National Book Award for Poetry and recipient of the 2018 Langston Hughes Society Award—also described Hughes as one of her north stars, taking up his charge to produce “social poetry” that confronts both the pain of the African-American community and the very people whose ideologies and actions contribute to that enduring pain. In exploration of these topics, this LHS panel asks participants to consider the literary legacy of Hughes and his impact on authors past and present.

Please send proposals of no more than five hundred words (for fifteen to twenty-minute papers) to both Dr. Wallis Baxter III (lhsociety.president@gmail.com) and Dr. Christopher Allen Varlack (lhsociety.secretary@gmail.com) no later than January 5, 2018 with an expected response no later than January 12, 2018. Note that presenters must be members of the Langston Hughes Society by the time of the conference in order to present. Please indicate any AV equipment needs in your E-mail. For more information on the Langston Hughes Society, please visit our website at www.LangstonHughesSociety.org.

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CFP for the 2018 ALA Annual Convention

May 24-27, 2018

San Francisco, CA


In pieces such as “Let America Be America Again,” Langston Hughes outlined his socio-political vision for the United States—a country that Hughes believed never truly lived up to the ideal that the founders envisioned in 1776. For Hughes, the pervasive race and class divides that only seemed to widen during his lifetime prevented the nation from becoming the “homeland of the free.” And yet, Hughes also recognized the importance of working to build that better America—an effort far different from the current initiative, under Donald J. Trump, to “Make America Great Again.” To understand Hughes’ vision (and/or the vision of his contemporaries), it is important that we now interrogate his response to the sociopolitical environment of the twentieth century and how his insights might help us to respond to similar yet equally pervasive issues today (as evidenced in the proposed travel ban, the disenfranchisement of people of color, etc.). In exploration of these topics, this LHS panel asks participants to consider the socio-political vision of Hughes and his contemporaries and how those vital literary conversations might help us respond to a climate in which there is still no “equality…in the air we breathe.”

Please send proposals of no more than five hundred words (for fifteen to twenty-minute papers) to both Dr. Wallis Baxter III (lhsociety.president@gmail.com) and Dr. Christopher Allen Varlack (lhsociety.secretary@gmail.com) no later than January 5, 2018 with an expected response no later than January 12, 2018. Note that presenters must be members of the Langston Hughes Society by the time of the conference in order to present. Please indicate any AV equipment needs in your E-mail. For more information on the Langston Hughes Society, please visit our website at www.LangstonHughesSociety.org.
 

2017 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2018 MLA Annual Convention

January 4-7, 2018

New York, NY

The Modern Language Association (MLA) Convention will be held from January 4-7, 2018, in New York, NY. The Langston Hughes Society, as part of its continued commitment to honor the life and the legacy of Langston Hughes, will once again host a panel. Interested participants are encouraged to develop a proposal on the subject of "Let America Be America Again” Revisited.

 

In the midst of the current sociopolitical climate and the Trump Era’s aim to “Make America Great Again,” it is important that we consider how Hughes speaks to the least, left out, and left behind within America. Specifically, how does Hughes engage the lower class, the immigrant, and the economically disadvantaged, and what insight does he offer in our current context?

 

Please submit abstracts of approximately 150 to 200 words to Wallis Baxter, Vice President of the Langston Hughes Society, at revwcbaxter@gmail.com. The deadline for submissions is March 15, 2017. Accepted presenters must be members of MLA and the LHS by April 1, 2017 in order to participate.

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CFP for the 2017 SAMLA Annual Convention

November 3-5, 2017

Atlanta, GA

Transgressing Artistic Borders: The High/Low Portrayal of the African-American Experience
in the Work of Langston Hughes and His Contemporaries

In his 1999 text Authentic Blackness: The Folk in the New Negro Renaissance, J. Martin Favor asserts that “[b]y privileging certain African American identities and voices over others, the critic of African American literature often restricts too severely his or her scope of intellectual inquiry into the construction of racial identity” (3). To some extent, this very notion proves the central debate of the Harlem Renaissance era, as the 1920s saw an influx in publications tracing the black aesthetic and probing the question of how the African-American community should be best depicted in black art. From the infamous questionnaire published by W.E.B. Du Bois in the Crisis to Langston Hughes’ “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain” of the same year, these authors were engaged in critical conversations about the new direction of the African-American literary tradition at a time when the Negro was most in vogue. 

 

In responding to the SAMLA 89 conference theme of “High/Low Art: Borders and Boundaries in Popular Culture,” the Langston Hughes Society asks for potential participants to consider how Langston Hughes as well as his contemporaries defined and transgressed the borders between high and low art in their literary texts. For instance, how might Hughes’ “Your Simple Minded Friend,” as Arna Bontemps notes in a 1919 letter, serve “as a device for treating topics which would otherwise seem high-flown or academic”—“a way of commenting on current events and pronouncements”? How might the portrait of black middle class life in Fauset’s novel There is Confusion offer a very different image than the lives of the common folk depicted in McKay’s Home to Harlem and Hughes’ Not Without Laughter? Consider texts such as Hughes’ Montage of a Dream Deferred and its representations of class and the African-American racial consciousness in the post-World War II era where art and social action would often converge. Consider also the blues poems that embodied the emotional tenor of black life in the twentieth century but for which Hughes was once condemned when reading at a colored church in Atlantic City shortly after the publication of The Weary Blues. Proposals examining the work of Langston Hughes (or intersections with Hughes) are especially welcome.

 

For consideration, please submit abstracts of approximately 250 to 300 words to Dr. Wallis Baxter III as an E-mail attachment at lhsociety.president@gmail.com. The deadline for submissions is June 2, 2017. Note that accepted presenters must be members of SAMLA and the LHS by June 30, 2017 in order to participate. SAMLA 89 will be held at the Westin Peachtree Plaza in Atlanta, GA, from November 3-5, 2017.

2016 Calls for Papers

 

CFP for the 2016 SAMLA Annual Conference

November 4-12, 2016

Jacksonville, Florida

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes presentations discussing gendered and racial identities during and beyond the context of the Harlem Renaissance. Paper proposals addressing the SAMLA 88 theme, "Utopia/Dystopia: Whose Paradise is It?," are especially welcome.

One-page abstracts are due by June 1st along with a brief bio and A/V requirements to Tara T. Green: ttgreen@uncg.edu

2015 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2016 Modern Language Association Annual Convention

January 7-10, 2016

Austin, Texas

 

The Langston Hughes Society seeks papers on adaptations of Langston Hughes's work.

 

Accepted panelists must be member of LHS and MLA. Send 400-word abstract and short biography by March 15 to Tara T. Green: ttgreen@uncg.edu.

 

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CFP for the 2015 College Language Association Annual Conference

April 8-11, 2015

Dallas, TX

 

Papers must place Hughes in relation to the conference theme, "Expanding Frontiers: Freedom, Resistance, and Transnational Identities in Languages and Literature.“

 

Abstracts are due by September 22. Accepted panelists must be members of CLA and LHS by January 30, 2015. For more information, see www.langstonhughessociety.org and www.clascholars.org.

 

2014 Calls for Papers

 

CFP for the 2015 Modern Language Association Annual Convention

Winter 2015

Vancouver, British Columbia

 

"Negotiating Sites of Memory in Langston Hughes’s Writings"

 

The Langston Hughes Society seeks panelists examining the above theme in Hughes’s texts.

 

Presenters must join the Modern Language Association and Langston Hughes Society. 250 word abstract and CV by 10 March 2014 to Sharon Lynette Jones (sharon.jones@wright.edu).

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CFP for the 2014 South Atlantic Modern Language Association Annual Conference

November 7-9, 2014

Atlanta, Georgia

 

"Sustainable Black Communities and New Approaches to the Life and Work of Langston Hughes"

 

The Langston Hughes Society seeks panelists with new approaches to discussing the work of Langston Hughes. Especially welcomed are those proposals that address the conference theme related to sustainability. Topics may include (but are not limited to) the relevance of rural or urban settings in Hughes’ work. Papers that place Hughes in conversation with contemporary writers and/or poets are especially encouraged.

 

Accepted panelists must be a member of LHS and SAMLA by August 25 in order to participate. By June 15, 2014, please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words, a brief bio, and A/V requirements to Tara T. Green: ttgreen@uncg.edu. 

2013 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2014 Modern Language Association Annual Convention

January 9-12, 2014

Chicago, Illinois

 

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes papers for a special session on "Langston Hughes's Poetry in Vulnerable Times."

 

Accepted panelists must be a member of LHS and MLA in order to participate. Send a 250 word abstract and CV by March 10th to Sharon Lynette Jones: sharon.jones@wright.edu.

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CFP for the 2013 South Atlantic Modern Language Association Annual Conference

November 8-10, 2013

Atlanta, Georgia

 

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes papers for a special session on "The Cultural History of Langston Hughes: an Omin-media Investigation." We are seeking papers that examine Langston Hughes's writings within the context of the special session topic. 

 

Accepted panelists must be a member of LHS and SAMLA in order to participate. Send a one-page typed abstract and short biography by June 1st to Sharon Lynette Jones: sharon.jones@wright.edu.

2012 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2013 Modern Language Association Annual Convention

January 3-6, 2013

Boston, Massachusetts

"New Approaches to Teaching Langston Hughes's Writings"

 

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes papers exploring innovative ways of teaching Hughes's texts. 

 

Accepted panelists must be a member of LHS and MLA in order to participate. Send a 250 word abstract and CV by March 10th to Sharon Lynette Jones: sharon.jones@wright.edu.

 

2011 Calls for Papers

CFP for the 2012 Modern Language Association Annual Convention

January 5-8, 2012

Seattle, Washington

"Reading Langston Hughes in the Age of Barack Obama"

 

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes papers exploring Hughes's transformative vision of ethnicity/race. 

 

Accepted panelists must be a member of LHS and MLA in order to participate. Send a 250 word abstract and CV by March 1st to Sharon Lynette Jones: sharon.jones@wright.edu.

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CFP for the 2012 College Language Association Annual Conference

March 28-31, 2012

Atlanta, Georgia

 

The Langston Hughes Society welcomes papers that explore the connections between Langton Hughes and the U.S. South. Papers that examine racial identity (for example, "the mulatto"), Scottsboro, Langston Hughes's relationship with Zora Neale Hurston and/or other authors, and additional aspects of Langston Hughes's writings and life as related to the U.S. South are welcome.

 

Accepted panelists must be members of CLA and LHS by February 1, 2012. Send a 300-400 word abstract and biographical profile by September 5th to Sharon Lynette Jones: sharon.jones@wright.edu.

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CFP for the 2012 American Literature Association Annual Conference

May 24-27, 2012

San Francisco, California

"Langston Hughes and Literary Radicalism"

 

The Langston Hughes Society will sponsor a panel that re-examines the vexed relationship between political and aesthetic radicalism in Hughes's writing. Critical judgments of Hughes have long distinguished between the works of a politically-radical, leftist Hughes and the works of a formally-radical, modernist Hughes. For instance, Hughes's sociopolitical Marxist verse of the 1930s, when not dismissed, has been devalued in relation to his modernist blues- and jazz-informed verse experiments of the 1920s and 1950s. As one of the modern period's pre-eminent African-American writers, the bifurcation of political and aesthetic radicalism--of vanguardism and avant-gardism--in Hughes's work shapes general assumptions we bring to African-American and U.S. literary politics and literary form.

In order to begin rethinking what radicalism means for studying Langston Hughes, we welcome submissions that address any aspect of Hughes's political and formal projects, including: ways Hughes's work dialogues with radical political movements such as Marxism, Pan-Africanism, and the Black Radical Tradition; the sociopolitical ramifications of Hughes's poetic experiments with the blues and jazz; the relationship of Hughes's work to predominant/canoncial forms of modernist innovation; Hughes's experiments with popular verse forms/his relationship to popular verse culture; the politics of Hughes's popular and/or literary-critical reputation; the dominant periodization of Hughes's political radicalism as a limited 1930s phases; cross-genre comparative analyses of the formal and political labors of Hughes's verse, prose, and drama; international aesthetic and sociopolitical influences on Hughes's work; and the sociopolitical uses to which Hughes's iconic literary and cultural status has been put.

 

Accepted panelists must be members of LHS by May 1, 2012. Send a 250 word abstract and CV by December 10th to Nathaniel Mills: nathaniel.mills@csun.edu.

Langston Hughes
Poet Laureate of Harlem