Decodings Spring 2018


Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts Newsletter          

Spring 2018, Vol. 27, No.2


*SLSA 2018 Conference, Toronto, Canada: CFP extended deadline April 3, 2018

*SLSA Awards


*Election Results

*Graduate Liaisons

*Configurations: Call for Reviewers and Contributions

*SLSA Bibliographers Needed

*SLSA Website: Contributions welcome

*AnthropoScene: SLSA Book Series
*SLSA Europe

Call for Papers: SLSA 2018 Conference “Out of Mind,” November 15-18, 2018, Toronto, Canada

Plenary Speakers: Jack Halberstam and Skawennati

Site Coordinators: David Cecchetto (York University) and Marcel O’Gorman (University of Waterloo)

We’re all out of our minds, in more ways than one. Some things we consciously put out of mind in order to think, while others gain their potency precisely from having always been outside of mind ‘proper.’ Madness, post- and pre-neuroscience, precognition, superstition, stupidity (bêtise), and bureaucracy all obtain on the question of our minds and their relation to thinking. (For further description, see information on the SLSA website.)

For individual papers, contributors should submit a 250-word abstract along with title and affiliation no later than 3 April 2018. Pre-organized panel submissions, which might include three or four papers per panel, should include an additional paragraph describing the rubric and proposed title of the panel. Roundtables, alternative format panels, workshops, and the like are encouraged. The conference will also include an arts exhibit, curated by Belinda Kwan, including a video by Skawennati; members interested in contributing artworks are encouraged to contact the site coordinators. Contributing artists are encouraged to apply for travel awards.

Submit all proposals and register for the conference by April 3, 2018 at                                                                                                                                     

SLSA 2018 Paper/Panel Proposal Due Date: April 3, 2018, with notification of acceptance by June 2018.

All participants in SLSA 2018 must be 2018 members of SLSA. To join or renew membership click on this link: or call the Johns Hopkins University Press Journals Division at 1-800-548-1784 (US & Canada only, all others call 410-516-6987). Mon-Fri 8:00am-4:30pm, Fax: 410-516-6968, Email:

2018 Travel Awards: SLSA provides a limited number of travel awards for underfunded individuals attending the annual conference. Members of SLSA who present at the annual conference may apply for travel subventions. An applicant should email name, title of SLSA presentation, an indication of how long one has been a member of SLSA, and any information about their funding for the conference to the Executive Director at by August 1. Please provide estimated travel expenses and the amount of support (if any) anticipated from other sources. If you have received travel support from SLSA in the past, please include information about that support (when and how much). SLSA officers will review applications and approve funds for as many as our budget permits; preference will be given to students and those most in need. Each person awarded funds will be presented with a check at the conference business meeting.

2018 SLSA NSF Travel Grants: SLSA is a member of a consortium of science societies (led by the History of Science Society) that have received funding from the US National Science Foundation (NSF) to support travel costs to the annual SLSA meeting for graduate students, independent scholars, artists, and recent PhD members who present papers or are involved in governance activities at the conference. The maximum award will be $1,000 for international travel and $500 for domestic travel (airfare will only be provided for travel on U.S. flag air carriers, or on airlines with code-share agreements, or under open skies agreements as stipulated by NSF requirements). Any other airlines, including British Air, Air Berlin, etc. are ineligible unless the flight is code-shared with a US carrier. Please note that, even though airlines may belong to the same “Alliance” (e.g., Star Alliance), their routes don’t automatically have a codeshare. The travel award will be provided as a reimbursement for expenses upon receipt of an official expense report, the appropriate receipts, and documentation of student status for those graduate students applying; these documents must be printed and mailed within 10 days of the conference to Carol Colatrella, LMC, Georgia Tech, 686 Cherry St., Atlanta, GA 30332-0165. A US citizen requesting reimbursement from employment and residence abroad should provide a copy of his/her US passport. SLSA NSF funds can only be awarded to SLSA members who are graduate students, independent scholars, artists, or recent PhDs with formal roles at the meeting. An awardee must be a 2018 SLSA member who is a US citizen or a graduate student enrolled in a US higher education institution. In recent years, SLSA NSF awardees have each received around $300. Application link and form:

2018 Bruns Essay Prize: The Bruns Graduate Essay Prize, in honor of Edward F. Bruns, is awarded annually to the best essay written by a graduate student member of the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts. Graduate students wishing to have their essays considered for the $500 prize should submit them by August 1 to N. Katherine Hayles, Department of English, Duke University, via electronic mail to Please send a copy of your formatted essay as a PDF or Word file, or send a pointer to a URL where the essay is posted.

2018 Schachterle Essay Prize: Lance Schachterle, founding president of the society, established an annual prize of $250 in honor of his parents to recognize the best new essay on literature and science written in English by a non-tenured scholar. Eligible authors wishing to submit essays (published or accepted for publication) should send them prior to August 1 to SLSA’s Executive Director, Carol Colatrella, LMC, Georgia Tech via electronic mail to Please send a copy of your formatted essay as a PDF or Word file, or send a pointer to a URL where the essay is posted.

SLSA Michelle Kendrick Memorial Book Prize: SLSA holds an annual competition for the Michelle Kendrick Memorial Book Prize awarded each year to the best academic book on literature, science, and the arts published by an SLSA member. The prize will be announced at the annual SLSA conference. Established in the fall of 2006 in memory of Michelle Kendrick of Washington State University-Vancouver, an energetic, well-loved scholar of literature and science and long-time member of SLSA, the Kendrick Prize is open to any book of original scholarship on literature, science, and the arts published between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2018. The winner will receive $250.00.To be considered for this year’s Kendrick Prize, an author should send or ask the press to send three copies of the book by June 30 to: Professor Robert Markley, Department of English, 608 South Wright Street, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801. Send donations for the Kendrick Prize (check written to SLSA, with Kendrick in memo) to Carol Colatrella, SLSA Executive Director, LMC, Georgia Tech, 686 Cherry Street, Atlanta, GA 30332-0165
2018 SLSA Lifetime Achievement Award: The SLSA Executive Committee each spring appoints a committee to seek and review nominations for the SLSA Lifetime Achievement award. Committee members include a former President of SLSA, who serves as chair, one currently serving member at large, and one other SLSA member. The Lifetime Achievement Awards Committee asks members to nominate candidates whose significant, interdisciplinary scholarship is exemplary of SLSA. The committee members will nominate candidates and should collaborate on reviewing nominations from the membership to select a recipient of the award or to decide not to make an award for that year. Members of the Lifetime Achievement Award Committee are Bob Markley ( and Suzanne Black ( Please send inquiries about requirements and nominations for the award to both by August 15, 2018.

Note: all of the awards described above are presented during the Business Meeting of the annual fall conference. One may submit only one entry to one of the two essay prize competitions.


Anyone wishing to donate to SLSA can do so in a number of ways: you may donate when you renew membership, or you can mail a check made out to SLSA to the Executive Director, or you can direct a donation from your retirement funds. All donations are appreciated and will help fund society initiatives, including its journal, conference, and awards.


The incoming Second Vice-President (serving from fall 2018 to fall 2020 and later as First Vice-President) is Maria Whiteman, Research Scholar, Artistic Social Practice, Environmental Resilience Institute at Indiana University, Bloomington. The incoming Member-at-Large (serving from fall 2018 to fall 2020) is Raymond Malewitz, Associate Professor and MA Director in the School of Writing, Literature, and Film at Oregon State University. Congratulations to them, and thanks to Everett Hamner and Daniel Vandersommers for agreeing to run for these offices.

GRADUATE STUDENT LIAISONS: Jap-Nanak Makkar’s term as graduate student liaison runs from fall 2017 to fall 2019, and McKenzie Stupica’s will run from fall 2018 to fall 2010. You can contact Jap-Nanak at and McKenzie at

CONTRIBUTE TO THE SLSA WEBSITE: New publication announcements, course syllabi and other material for display on the website are welcome. Please see the site for details, or contact Wayne Miller, SLSA Electronic Resources Coordinator, at with any questions or comments.

NEW SLSA BIBLIOGRAPHER NEEDED: SLSA is recruiting bibliographers to succeed Jennifer Rhee. Graduate liaison Jap-Nanak Makkar is collecting nominations and self-nominations. Email her at

SLSA Europe
The SLSAeu also welcomes membership and support from friends and colleagues beyond Europe
To join, see
Mailing list for SLSAeu:
SLSAeu LinkedIn:
SLSAeu Facebook:
Information about the 2018 SLSAeu conference GREEN:

ANTHROPOSCENE: NEW SLSA BOOK SERIES FROM PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY PRESS: AnthropoScene is a new book series from the Pennsylvania State University Press, published in collaboration with SLSA. While not all scientists have accepted the term “anthropocene” as part of the geological timescale, the idea that humans are changing the planet and its environments in radical and irreversible ways has provoked new kinds of cross-disciplinary thinking about relationships among the arts, human technologies, and nature. This is the broad, cross-disciplinary basis for books published in AnthropoScene. Books in this series will include specialized studies for scholars in a variety of disciplines as well as widely accessible works of interest to broad audiences. They will examine, in a variety of ways, relationships and points of intersection among natural, biological, and applied sciences and literary, visual, and performing arts. The AnthropoScene series represents the depth and breadth of work being done by scholars in literature, science, and the arts, putting innovative juxtapositions within reach of specialists and non-specialists alike.

Series Editors are Lucinda Cole and Robert Markley, both at the University of Illinois. Series Advisory Board members are Stacy Alaimo, University of Texas at Arlington; Ron Broglio, Arizona State University; Carol Colatrella, Georgia Institute of Technology; Heidi Hutner, Stony Brook University; Stephanie LeMenager, University of Oregon; Christopher Morris, University of Texas at Arlington; Laura Otis, Emory University; Will Potter, Washington, D.C.; Ronald Schleifer, University of Oklahoma; Susan Squier, Penn State University; Rajani Sudan, Southern Methodist University; and Kari Weil, Wesleyan University.

Submissions to the AnthropoScene series should include a three- to five-page proposal outlining the intent of the project, its scope, its relation to other work on the topic, and its intended audience(s). Please also include two to three sample chapters, if available, and your CV. Questions or submissions? Contact Penn State Press:  Kendra Boileau, Editor-in-Chief, at or (814) 867-2220. Or email the series editors: Lucinda Cole at and Robert Markley at


Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts Executive Board (2018)

President: Ron Broglio, Arizona State University
Executive Director: Carol Colatrella, Georgia Institute of Technology
First Vice-President: Marcel O’Gorman, University of Waterloo
Second Vice-President: David Cecchetto, York University, Toronto
Members-at-Large: Rebecca Perry, University of Virginia (2016-2018); John Hay, University of Nevada-Las Vegas (2017-2019)
Graduate Student Liaisons: Nicole Keller Day, Northeastern University (to fall 2018); Jap-Nanak Makkar, University of Virginia (to fall 2019); McKenzie Stupica, Northwestern University (to fall 2020).

Past Presidents: Robert Markley, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Laura Otis, Emory University; Richard Nash, Indiana University; Alan Rauch, University of North Carolina-Charlotte; Bruce Clarke, Texas Tech University; Eve Keller, Fordham University; Jay Labinger, California Institute of Technology; T. Hugh Crawford, Georgia Tech; Susan Squier, Penn State; Sidney Perkowitz, Emory University; Stuart Peterfreund, Northeastern University; James J. Bono, SUNY-Buffalo; N. Katherine Hayles, Duke University; Mark Greenberg, Drexel University; Lance Schachterle, Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Stephen J. Weininger, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Configurations Editors: Melissa Littlefield, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Rajani Sudan, Southern Methodist University Configurations Email address:
Configurations Book Review Editor: Jeffrey Karnicky, Department of English, 2505 University Avenue,
Drake University, Des Moines, IA 50311. Email:
Publications Committee: Susan Squier, Penn State University; Ronald Schleifer, University of Oklahoma; Pamela Gossin, University of Texas at Dallas
Bibliographer: Position open—If interested, contact Jap-Nanak Makkar at
Electronic Resources Coordinator: Wayne Miller, Duke University (
Arts Liaisons: Dennis Summers (; Kiki Benzon (; Maria Whiteman (
Social Media Liaison: Nicole Fletcher (

The Executive Director can be reached at (404) 894-1241 or  Postal address: Carol Colatrella, Executive Director, SLSA, School of Literature, Media, and Communication, Georgia Institute of Technology, 686 Cherry Street, Atlanta, GA  30332-0165

SLSA websites: and