Monday, April 29, 2013

The Fifth International Conference on Popular Romance Studies

Rethinking Love, Rereading the Romance

Aristotle University
Thessaloniki, Greece
19-21 June, 2014

Deadline: November 15, 2013

Eros, Philia, Agape:  for nearly three thousand years, these three Greek terms have been used in the West to triangulate the shifting concept called “romantic love,” not just in philosophy and theology, but also in popular culture.  In other parts of the globe, love gets framed quite differently—by ‘ishq and hub and their cognates, by shringara and bhakti and prem, by the shifting codes of qing and aiqing—but no matter the language, debates about what love is, how it should feel, and how a lover should behave cross the great divides that separate high art and intellectual discourse from kitsch, journalism, and popular culture. 

For its fifth international conference on Popular Romance Studies, to be held at Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, Greece, the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance calls for papers on romantic love and its representations in popular media, now and in the past, from anywhere in the world. 

We are interested in scholarship on all forms of popular media:  not just fictional modes (novels, films, TV shows, comics, song lyrics, fan fiction, etc.), but also didactic genres (advice columns, dating manuals, newspaper debates about love or marriage “in crisis”), depictions of real-life love, and the representations of love, romance, and material culture deployed by advertising (wedding dresses, courtship rituals, etc.). 

All theoretical and empirical approaches are welcome.  Proposals may focus on single authors, texts, songs, films, TV series, and marketing campaigns, or on broader topics and issues, including discussions of pedagogy and the theory or practice of popular romance scholarship. 

Given our conference locale, we invite proposals that discuss Greece, the Balkans, and the Eastern Mediterranean as settings for love-culture, but we are also looking for proposals on love in Asian, African, Middle Eastern, and Latin American popular media, and on popular romance media from any place or period (including classical, medieval, early modern, etc.) in which the concept of “romantic love” gets contested or revisited. 

Submit proposals for individual papers, full panels, roundtables, interviews, or innovative presentations to by November 15, 2013. All proposals will be peer reviewed.

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