Thursday, June 30, 2016

MELOW Conference 2017. March 3-5 in Chandigarh


(The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the World)



Chandigarh, 3-5 March 2017

Theme: Facts, Distortions and Erasures: Literature as History; History in Literature

            Literature has ever shared an intimate relationship with history. History has provided the background and context to literary works down the centuries and remains one of the many sources of inspiration for a writer. Our perception of the history-literature interface keeps changing as time goes on and in recent decades, contemporary theoretical developments have yet again changed the understanding of literature’s connection with history and enabled us to see the literary text in more ways than one. We may now see ‘literature in history’ (Brannigan) and history in literature, taking the literary text as unofficially recorded history, focusing on the ‘historicity of texts’ and the ‘textuality of history’ (Montrose), History now conceives itself as exploration rather than discovery, as reinscription rather than reproduction; through its revisionism it interrogates the master-narratives to salvage and include in its corpus little narratives, local knowledges, collective memories and oral stories long kept outside the official episteme.

            The 16th MELOW International Conference would seek to explore the changing relationships between history and literature, focusing on a broad expanse that includes literature across borders of time and space. Areas of exploration would relate literature and its representations in history, recorded and unrecorded. These may include but are not limited to the following:

·       Theoretical issues: reading strategies, contemporary views of history, grand narratives and little stories.

·       History, memory and literary representation: historical events commemorated in literature; creative use of historical sources.

·       Reconfigurations: figmentation, fabrication and fictionalization of historical characters; condensation and displacement.

·       Re-centering: magnification of marginalized characters, unheard/ignored voices and events.

·       Counter-narratives: Revisioning and re-interpretation of traditional accounts.

·       Search for truth: intermingling of fact and fiction.

·       Whose story? Her-story as history.  


Abstracts not exceeding 250 words are invited on the issues listed above. The main thrust of the conference remains world literature that cuts across continents; keeping this in view, proposals related to the areas given below may be sent to the given email id with a copy to

1.     Proposals on Theoretical considerations: Prof Anil Raina at

2.     Proposals related to Indian Literature: Dr Roshan Lal Sharma at

3.     Proposals related to Canadian and American Literature: Prof Manpreet Kang at

4.     Proposals related to European Literature: Prof Ashis Sengupta at

5.     Proposals related to Australian/African Literature: Dr. Vandhana Sharma at 

6.     Proposals related to areas not covered above: Prof Manju Jaidka at

Your abstract (of about 250 words) should be sent in the TEXT BOX of the email (not as attachment). The following information, in the given format, should be sent along with the abstract:

Name of Delegate
Official designation
Email id
Title of Abstract
MELUS/MELOW conferences attended earlier (in which year and where)
Are you currently a member of MELOW? Or do you need a fresh / renewed membership? Please specify.
ABSTRACT [Text] 250 words max.

The subject line of your message should read thus:

ABSTRACT 2017: [YOUR NAME] and [If applicable, state if you are an Indian citizen below 40, competing for the ISM award]*

Deadline for receipt of abstracts is 1 September 2016 

All abstracts will be peer-reviewed before they are accepted. Do not send full papers. Once acceptance letters are sent, full papers (approx 3,000 words) will be invited only from participants competing for the Isaac Sequeira Memorial Award. The rest need to bring their complete papers (hard copies, please) along at the time of the conference.


In the memory of our mentor, Prof Isaac Sequeira, MELOW annually awards a prize for the best paper presented at its conference. The award comprises a certificate and a cash prize of Rs. 5,000.

The competition is open to Indian citizens who are members of  MELOW. The competing participant / delegate should be born on or after  01.01.1977. The abstract should be submitted by the stipulated deadline. If it is selected for the ‘long list’ the complete paper will be invited by a given deadline and assessed and shortlisted before it is presented at the conference.