Fantasies of the Nation

2013-2014 Working Group: Fantasies of the Nation

Fantasies of the Nation

This working group will explore and unpack the political implications of fantasy texts.  How do these images represent nationalities, or translate across cultures? How should we as academics engage with these texts? We will consider the relationship of popular media to academic writing and discuss international perspectives on fantastic mythmaking. We will also discuss the burgeoning popularity of fanfiction and fandom, and consider their effects on the ways nationalist or nation-centred fantasies are transformed, consumed and interpreted.  A major theme will be the issue of language: how do particular words encapsulate political ideas? How does translation alter the reader or viewer's experience, whether of the text or within the text? What is the function of fantasy languages within the text? Can fanworks communicate and translate between cultures?  We will read classic works of science fiction and fantasy alongside work by up-and-coming authors and critical commentary.

Kaitlin Heller, Ph.D. cand., History

Suzanne Akbari, English and Medieval Studies
Liza Blake, UTM English & Drama
Greti Dinkova-Bruun, Pontifical Institute for Mediæval Studies
Aaron Dinkin, Linguistics
Monica Heller, OISE
Russell Kazal, History
Chester Scoville, UTM English & Drama

Michael Barbezat, Medieval Studies
Daniel Brielmaier, Medieval Studies
Michael Collins, English
Zainab Coovadia, Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations
Dong Gao, Chemistry
Adam Gwyndaf Garbutt, History & Philosophy of Science & Technology
Peter Latka, English
Jessica Lockhart, Medieval Studies
Abraham Plunkett-Latimer, History
Daniel Price, Medieval Studies
Corinna Prior, History
Jessica Radin, Religion and Jewish Studies
Morris Tichenor, Medieval Studies
Elizabeth Watkins, Medieval Studies