Call for Papers: MLA

(Re)thinking Academic Forms: A Conversation (CfP for a Roundtable at the 2025 MLA Convention)


35-Word MLA CfP

The proposed roundtable, based on the work of the Working Group on Academic Forms, aims for a critical conversation on the ways in which conventionalized and institutionalized academic forms define, shape, foster or stifle the intellectual work we do in the humanities.


Extended CfP

This proposed roundtable, based on the work of the Working Group on Academic Forms, will contribute to the necessary, ongoing, and yet underrepresented discussion on how the established academic forms (the monograph, the essay collection, the special issue, the journal article, the essay, the conference paper, the CfP, the roundtable format etc.) define, shape, foster or, perhaps, stifle the intellectual work we do as scholars in the humanities.

We are looking for positions that critically and constructively (re)negotiate the role of conventionalized and institutionalized academic form(at)s for the academic humanities and their functions in a larger socio-cultural and political context. We therefore aim to bring perspectives from the entire disciplinary spectrum of the humanities in the broadest possible sense (cultural studies, literary studies, philosophy, history, sociology, political science and media studies …)  into a productive, transdisciplinary dialogue to address – among others – the following questions:

Are conventionalized academic forms are burden or a blessing for intellectual discourse in the university context? Why have certain academic forms once central to scholarly discourse (the Socratic dialogue, the aphorism etc.) lost their currency in contemporary academia? How has the neo-liberal turn in academia lead to a canonization of ‘marketable’ forms? How do recent technological developments in A.I. and the digital humanities challenge the hegemony of established forms and do these new technologies carry the potential to bring about new innovative forms?

We invite interested participants to submit a short abstract (200-300 words) of their ideas and positions and a bio-note to by March 20, 2024.

For further enquiries please contact Florian Zappe (


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