Worlding the Low Countries

13th international conference of the ALCS

6–8 November, University College London.

UCL Portico

As the truism goes, we are all connected, yet research on the worldliness of the Low Countries is still a rather minor fraction of Dutch Studies. The ALCS2019 conference attempts to broaden and encourage this type of research and wishes to world the study of Dutch, including, of course, its global varieties and relations. It invites speakers to focus on the interconnection between the Low Countries and the world, and on the different scales (local, regional, national, continental, global) and levels (aesthetic, cultural, linguistic, political, economic, ecological etc.) on which these relations take place.

Marking the occasion of the Centenary of Neerlandistiek in the Anglophone world (the first Chair for Dutch Studies was founded in 1919 at University College London, the 13th international and interdisciplinary Conference of the Association for Low Countries Studies (ALCS2019) will be held at UCL on Wednesday to Friday, 6–8 November 2019.

We are looking for individual papers (20 minutes) and fully constituted panel suggestions (3 * 20 minutes plus Chair) on this year’s conference theme of Worlding the Low Countries from a variety of disciplinary and interdisciplinary angles. Questions that could be considered include the following (but paper proposals are not restricted to these suggestions):

  1. How does literature in Dutch represent the world: how does it represent other continents, how does it represent the movement from characters of the Low Countries across the globe, or from ‘others’ coming to the Low Countries?
  2. How are the Low Countries represented across the world in image, text and performance, and vice versa, how are other regions represented within the Low Countries?
  3. How to understand the intercultural relations that shape literatures and arts of the Low Countries?
  4. How do we decolonize the study of Dutch and the literary and art history of the Low Countries?
  5. How do historical and current ecological developments (re)configure the map of the Low Countries?
  6. How to systematically compare the different manifestations and articulations of Dutch (literature, language, culture) in the world and in the Low Countries?
  7. What is the function of translation in worlding the Low Countries, and can its study offer a model for further research into the Low Countries’ globality?
  8. How to study the worldliness of the sociolinguistic situation in large urban centres in the Low Countries? Do those situations affect national imagery, or the understanding of Flanders and the Netherlands as a community supposedly united by one language?

Paper proposals will be subject to peer review and modifications may be required. We are planning to publish selected contributions in print afterwards. The conference language is English, the deadline for submissions 30 March 2019.

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