Speculative fiction, film, and television series are fast-growing genres, in part because they comment on the present. These genres ask readers to consider environmental, technological, and political events and developments in the world today, and the impacts these may have on the world of the future. They are often used by their creators to represent, report, and speculate on key societal issues, such as relations of class, gender, and race, as well as issues of environmental destruction and political conflict. In Canada, speculative writing has become a tool to interrogate colonial enterprises and open up spaces for marginalized groups, including women, Indigenous peoples, members of LGBTQ2S+ communities, and others whose lives are inflected by cultural difference, to assert their identities and create avenues for resistance. A variety of speculative worlds have achieved popularity through films and television/internet series, some of which are literary adaptations. 20/20 Vision: Speculating in Literature and Film in Canada invites researchers and creators in the year 2020 to present their own speculations about the futures and/or societies that are presented in various texts produced in or relating to Canada. What do speculative texts tell us? Which visions of “Canada” do we find in speculative texts? How do these visions reflect our own perceptions of the world? Does this kind of literary imagination help us achieve social change?
Proposals for both papers and panels are invited. These can take a range of approaches related to speculative writing in Canada, including:
- Dystopian worlds
- Utopian and anti-utopian worlds
- Apocalyptic scenarios
- Post-apocalyptic futures
- Feminist speculations
- Indigenous speculations
- Decolonizing speculations
- Speculative writing for children
- Speculative poetry
- Climate change and/or technological developments
- Animals in speculative writing
- Speculations on language and power
- Disability in speculative writing
- Gender and sexuality in speculative writing
- Speculation and interdisciplinarity
- Speculations on the screen: movies, documentaries, television and internet series, video games
- Speculative adaptations
- Speculative creation, including the writing of speculative fiction*
*The conference will also host sessions in which creators of speculative genres will be invited to present their works. Authors and artists are invited to propose 20-minute creative pieces; these may involve readings from written works, visual instalments, performance pieces, or film presentations.
Paper proposals should include the following:
- Your name, contact information (including email address and telephone number), and institutional affiliation.
- The title of your proposed 20-minute paper or presentation, AND a proposal of 250-300 words, identifying the works that will be your focus of your paper and outlining the argument to be presented OR describing your creative piece and the method of presentation or performance.
- A 50-word biographical statement.
Panel proposals should include the above information for all participants.
Please e-mail your proposal in a Word document to conference organizers Wendy Roy and Mabiana Camargo of the University of Saskatchewan at email@example.com by February 10, 2020.
Conference acceptances will be emailed in April, 2020. For further information, please visit the website or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Website link: https://artsandscience.usask.ca/english/2020vision/
After the conference, there will be an open call for expanded papers to be published in a collection of essays on speculations in literature and on screen in Canada.