Scholars from institutions throughout the country will come together to explore the changes that have taken place in the nature of war over the centuries and how these changes have been reflected in literature and film at the 28th annual Colloquium on Literature and Film being held Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 18-20, in the Mountainlair. The events theme is”The Evolution of War and Its Representation.
“As we deal everyday with the realities of war in our own lives, this year’s West Virginia University colloquium offers a forum in which to exchange scholarly views, ideas and analysis that foster a deeper understanding of the causes and consequences of war and the need for world peace,”said Daniel F. Ferreras, colloquium director and WVU associate professor of foreign languages.
Ferreras expects over 100 participants in 35 panels dealing with war from the Middle Ages to the present and beyond as seen by writers of American, British, Eastern European, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and Postcolonial works. Several panels will focus on specific historical conflicts, such as the Civil War, World War I, Vietnam and the Algerian war. General panel topics include The Soldiers’Craft from World War I to the Gulf War; Anti-War Narrative and the Demythologizing of the Warrior; Post Traumatic War Disorder: Narrative Tendencies of the Post-War Film; Media and the Rhetoric of War; The Anatomy of Tyranny; Filmic Depictions of Women and War; Survivors of War and the Literature of Trauma; and War Correspondents as Writers, Writers as War Correspondents. One of the highlights of the colloquium will be a presentation by Paul Fussell on”The Progress of Disillusion: Images and Narratives of Modern War”at 6 p.m. Friday in the Gold Ballroom of the Mountainlair.
Fussell is professor emeritus of English at the University of Pennsylvania and the nationally acclaimed author of, among other titles, The Great War and Modern Memory, which won both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award and was named by the Modern Library as one of the 20th century’s 100 best nonfiction books.
The conference will close on Saturday afternoon with a reception in the Greenbrier Room of the Mountainlair honoring Armand E. Singer and celebrating his contribution as editor of the West Virginia Philological Papers. The scholarly journal, housed in the Department of Foreign Languages and produced by the WVU Press, will be publishing its 50th volume in 2003. Since the inception of the colloquium, the journal has featured selected papers from the event.
The event is organized by the WVU Department of Foreign Languages and co-sponsored by the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of English, the Department of History, the Perley Isaac Reed School of Journalism and the Center for Women’s Studies.
Activities are free and open to the University community, including the showing of two award-winning war films,All Quiet on the Western FrontandNo Man’s Land.For further information, contact the Department of Foreign Languages at 293-5121. The preliminary program is available athttp://www.as.wvu.edu/forlang.