We invite essay proposals (in English) for a new anthology, Teaching Central American Literature in a Global Context, to be published as part of the MLA Options for Teaching series.
United States–Central American relations date back to the nineteenth-century filibustering activities of William Walker, who declared himself president of Nicaragua and planned to annex the region to the Southern states. While understudied in English literature courses or even in traditional Spanish and Portuguese departments in universities around the United States, the region has a rich literary history, which extends from The Popul Wuj through to the works of Ruben Darío, Miguel Angel Asturias, and Claribel Alegría. Indeed, with the rise of testimonial literature and contemporary indigenous literatures, Central American literatures have shaped many of the debates that have come to define Latin American literature. Beyond literary considerations, Central American writers have contributed to debates around regionalism and cosmopolitism, United States intervention and empire, as well as translation and mestizaje. In addition, the recent debates around immigration in the United States and the growing Central American presence in the United States makes this region an important one for undergraduate and graduate students, teachers, and college and university professors to learn about, especially as the literature centralizes the key issues affecting the region today. The political upheavals forced migration to other countries abroad, but mainly to the United States. Along with the dissemination of the political upheavals, the translations of novels, short stories, and poetry into English made some critical strides.
The anthology would be divided into historical and thematic sections encompassing the most critical historical, literary, and political periods and literary and political movements in the region and beyond. Essays would highlight Indigenous, feminist, testimonial, civil war, postwar, migration, and diasporic literatures. These should focus on pedagogical approaches to the teaching of certain texts in the classroom to understand the region and its literature.
Possible areas of focus include:
- Colonialism and empire
- Nineteenth-century Central America–United States relations
- Modernism and cosmopolitanism
- Translation and globalization
- Central American diasporas
- Teaching about Central Americans through film
- Post-testimonio literature
- Teaching methodologies
- Civil war texts and Central American realities
- Postwar texts and current political issues
- Gender and genre
- Racial configurations and mestizaje
- Queer Central American literatures
- Environmentalism and migration
- Mexican texts about Central Americans
- United States literature and Central America
- Teaching Central American literature abroad
If you plan to contribute, please send us your CV and a 500-word abstract by 20 March 2019. Articles should be 5,000–8,000 words in length, with text and notes in MLA style. Send your abstract and CV by e-mail as separate attachments in .doc(x) format. Address your submission and queries to Gloria E. Chacón (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Mónica Albizúrez (email@example.com) with the subject line “Teaching Central American Literature.”