Decodings Fall 2019


Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts Newsletter                     

Fall 2019, Vol. 28, No.4

*SLSA 2019, “Experimental Engagements,” University of California-Irvine

*2019 Election for Member-at-Largedeadline 9/30/19

*New Policies under Consideration: Respectful Behavior and Freedom of Speech

*AnthropoScene Book Series

*SLSA Europe News


UPCOMING MEETING: SLSA 2019: Experimental Engagements — November 7-9, 2019

University of California-Irvine, California

Co-chairs: Jesse Jackson and Antoinette Lafarge.

Keynote speakers: artist Andrea Polli, co-sponsored by the UCI Department of Art, and architect Laura Kurgan, co-sponsored by the UCI School of Humanities. In addition, there will be a special artist’s talk by lauren woods in connection with her exhibition American Monument at the Beall Center for Art + Technology.

At the past two meetings, SLSA has taken a close look at how we use concepts of time and mind to regulate our relation to the world. For SLSA 2019, we turn our attention towards embodied and experimental practices that engage with a world out of balance. We are excited to be able to offer over 100 panels, workshops, and other events over the three days of this year’s conference.

Notifications of acceptance for all categories of submissions were sent out in late June. If for some reason anyone is unclear about the status of their submission(s), they should email the conference organizers right away at The program committee is finalizing the schedule, which will be released very soon on the conference website. With thanks to the peer reviewers, program committee, and SLSA leadership for much help along the way, we look forward to seeing everyone in November.

Meeting Location: The 2019 conference will be held over three days (Thursday, November 7th through Saturday, November 9th) on the campus of UC Irvine. Most conference panels and the keynotes will be at the Student Center, with additional events taking place in nearby venues on campus.

Conference Hotel: A limited number of rooms are available at reduced rates at the Atrium Hotel in Irvine. To reserve a room for SLSA 2019, please call 1-800-854-3012 and reference SLSA 2019 CONFERENCE.

SLSA Membership: Participants in the 2019 Conference must be 2019 members of the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts. For more information about SLSA, visit the organization’s website at 

REGISTRATION NOW OPEN: To join/re-join the society and to register for the 2019 meeting, see

REGISTRATION FEES are listed below, and are in US currency (late fees apply after September 15, 2019).
These fees include continental breakfasts and lunches on all three days as well as some coffee breaks and reception snacks. Your food preferences will be polled closer to the date of the conference.
Regular faculty:  $250                                        Late faculty (after 9/15/19): $350
Students and adjunct faculty: $175                    Late students and adjunct faculty (after 9/15/19): $250

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS/PROPOSALS: The post of SLSA bibliographer is now open, and the executive committee is eager to see nominations of individuals to serve and to consider proposals for the development of bibliographical resources that could serve SLSA members and disciplines. Email Carol Colatrella (

APPOINTED Graduate Student Liaisons: SLSA welcomes Brad Necyk (University of Alberta), Ben Platt (Oregon State University), and Tyler Gabbard (Purdue University) as graduate student liaisons advising the executive committee; they join McKenzie Stupiča (Northwestern University). Contact them via email at

Brad Necyk:; Ben Platt (;Tyler Gabbard:; or McKenzie Stupiča:


2018 SLSA Kendrick Book Prize

The winner of the 2018 Kendrick Book Award is Arielle Saiber’s Measured Words: Computation and Writing in Renaissance Italy (University of Toronto Press). Two books were short listed and received honorable mentions: Jennifer Lieberman, Power Lines: Electricity in American Life and Letters, 1882-1952 (MIT Press), and David Parisi, Archeologies of Touch: Interfacing with Haptics from Electricity to Computing (University of Minnesota Press). Congratulations to all. And thanks to Bob Markley for chairing the prize deliberations.


2019 Election for Member-at-Large—deadline to vote: 9/30/19

The Journals Division of Johns Hopkins University Press will send a link to the 2019 ballot to all 2019 members. The person with the most votes will serve as member-at-large for two years (fall 2019 to fall 2020). There are two candidates who have been nominated and who have submitted statements:

  1. Adriana Knouf, Assistant Professor of Art + Design, College of Arts, Media, and Design, Northeastern University

As both a media scholar and media artist, I’ve found SLSA to be one of the few academic venues that really values the varied natures of my practices. I’ve come to the conferences on a regular basis since 2007, and consider SLSA to be one of my “must-attend” conferences of the year, not only because of the multifarious intellectual conversations that happen, but also because of the people that I meet that turn into interlocutors and friends. If elected to the member-at-large position I would like to further highlight the work done by artists and scholar-artists, building upon the already excellent exhibition program and artists talks. As a queer transgender woman I’d also want to work to elevate the work of other trans SLSA members, especially queer and trans people of color (QTPOC). I am currently an Assistant Professor of Art + Design at Northeastern University, in Boston, MA, and previously worked in the Cinema and Media Studies program at Wellesley College.


  1. Adriana Knouf (she/her/hers, sie/hir/hirs) is a media artist and scholar researching noise, interferences, boundaries, and limits in media technologies and communication. Her current research project, tentatively entitled The Xenology Notebooks, is a transmedia, transdisciplinary corpus expansively considering the “xeno”. Her first book, How Noise Matters to Finance(University of Minnesota Press, 2016), traced how the concept of  “noise” in the sonic and informatic domains of finance mutated throughout the late 20th century into the 21st.

Her current artistic research explores queer and trans futurities on earth and in the cosmos. Projects include Enredos Sónicos/Sonic Plots, a collaborative sonic exchange between the US and Cuba; they transmitted continuously / but our times rarely aligned / and their signals dissipated in the æther (2018-present), a 20 channel sound art installation with speakers made from handmade abaca paper and piezo electric elements, with sounds collected by custom antennas from satellite transmissions; and PIECES FOR PERFORMER(S) AND EXTRATERRESTRIAL ENTITIES (2017-present), event scores laser etched into handmade translucent abaca paper.

Adam Nocek, Assistant professor in the philosophy of technology and science and technology studies in the School of Arts, Media and Engineering at Arizona State University 

I am interested in being considered for the position of member at large in the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts. I have been presenting papers and chairing panels at the SLSA since my first years in graduate school at the University of Washington; this experience has helped me to build strong networks (of scholars and practitioners) that have been vital to my academic career. It is thanks to enriching and sustained intellectual engagements at the SLSA that I was able to land my first tenure-track position in the School of Arts, Media and Engineering at Arizona State University in 2015. Since that time, I co-organized the 2017 SLSA in Tempe, Arizona and continue to present papers, chair panels, and participate on roundtables at annual conferences. In 2018, I became the founding director of the Center for Philosophical Technologies at ASU (which works at the intersection of STS, design, and art methods). If elected, I would leverage this administrative position to help foster new intellectual and institutional partnerships with the SLSA organization. 


 He has published widely on the philosophy of media and science; speculative philosophy (especially Whitehead); design philosophy, history, and practice; and critical and speculative theories of computational media. In his creative practice, Nocek draws on social and speculative design and the material arts and sciences to design techniques for activating collective critique and imagination. His work has been performed and exhibited internationally. Nocek is the co-editor of The Lure of Whitehead and has just completed a manuscript titled, Molecular Capture: Biology, Animation, and the Design of Governance. Nocek is currently working on two book projects: the first project addresses computational governance and the emergence of new regimes of design expertise, and the second project reimagines the role of mythology within speculative design philosophy. Nocek is a Visiting Researcher at the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Study and is the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) Visiting Professor.


POLICIES UNDER CONSIDERATION, NOW UPDATED: Respectful Behavior and Freedom of Speech

SLSA officers and the executive committee have developed two new policies and have shared them with members through the listserv. After incorporating revisions suggested by several members, the updated policies have been posted here:

Any member interested in volunteering to serve as ombudsperson, should send an email to Carol Colatrella (; include a short statement of why you are interested in serving in this role and what experience you can bring the position. Current officers will review statements to make an appointment.


ANTHROPOSCENE: SLSA BOOK SERIES FROM PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY PRESS AnthropoScene is a book series from Penn State University Press, published in collaboration with the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts. 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 include specialized studies for scholars in a variety of disciplines as well as widely accessible works of interest to broad audiences. They 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.

Submissions 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. Send submissions or questions to: Kendra Boileau, Assistant Director and Editor‐in‐Chief, at Or contact the series editors: Lucinda Cole at and Robert Markley at

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.

Announcing a New Title in AnthropoScene: The SLSA Book Series
Love in a Time of Slaughters: Human-Animal Stories Against Genocide and Extinction by Susan McHugh
            “[A] vital contribution to one of the most urgent conversations of our time.”—Daniel Justice, author of
Our Fire Survives the Storm: A Cherokee Literary History
In this book, Susan McHugh examines a diverse array of contemporary narratives in which genocide and extinction blur species lines in order to show how such stories can promote the preservation of biological and cultural diversity. These narratives show the vulnerabilities of affective bonds as well as the kinds of loss shared when interspecific relationships are annihilated. In this thoughtful critique, McHugh explores the potential of these narratives to become a powerful, urgent strategy of resistance to the forces that work to dehumanize people, eradicate animals, and threaten biodiversity.

Also in the AnthropoScene series:
Anthropocene Reading: Literary History in Geologic Times. Edited by Tobias Menely and Jesse Oak Taylor
Editing the Soul: Science and Fiction in the Genome Age by Everett Hamner

SLSA Member’s Only Discount from Penn State University Press: Use code SLSA30 for 30% off any AnthropoScene title purchased directly from PSU Press, plus free domestic shipping and discounts on foreign shipping!



ANTHROPOCENES: Reworking of the Wound, to be held on 17-20 June 2020 in Katowice, Poland.

Organizer: Ania Malinowska


The website URL for the conference will be shared via the SLSA listserv when available.


Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts Executive Board (2019)
President: Marcel O’Gorman, University of Waterloo
Executive Director: Carol Colatrella, Georgia Institute of Technology
First Vice-President: David Cecchetto, York University, Toronto
Second Vice-President: Maria Whiteman, Indiana University
Members-at-Large: John Hay, University of Nevada-Las Vegas (2017-2019); Raymond Malewitz (2018-2020)
Graduate Student Liaisons:  Brad Necyk, University of Alberta (; Ben Platt (;Tyler Gabbard:; McKenzie Stupiča: (

Configurations Editors: Melissa Littlefield, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and 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

Electronic Resources Coordinator: Wayne Miller, Duke University (
Bibliographer: Kari Nixon, Whitworth University. Email:

Arts Liaisons: Dennis Summers (; Kiki Benzon (;
Maria Whiteman (
Social Media Liaison: Nicole Fletcher (
Past Presidents: Ron Broglio, Arizona State University; 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

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