As a medium that conveys our acute sensitivities, longings, and struggles for justice, literature has always been responsive to human rights, namely, our political, economic, social, cultural, and environmental entitlements as rights-bearing subjects. The idea of human rights is simultaneously a political aim, a legal discourse, and a set of social, political, and legal practices. It figures in literary texts in the more recognizable form of access to justice. Writers and poets have always critically responded to injustices and violations of rights in their time and offered their reflections on the idea of justice and rights. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the United Nations defines five ethical principles in relation with human rights: 1. Universality, 2. Equality, 3. Participation, 4. Interdependence, 5. The rule of law. Although show slight varieties in different political structures and cultural contexts, these principles have a common resonance in literatures of the globe, especially in the literary representations of marginalized populations and the peripheric social groups whose lives are threatened by suppressive political powers.
This conference invites studies that interrogate the complexities of representing human rights vis-a-vis hegemonic political and economic powers in literature. The contributors are encouraged to draw on the most current political theories as well as trauma studies, postcolonial theory, subaltern studies, Marxism, feminist politics, and eco-critical studies. The significance of contributions come from the way they elucidate textual imaginations of human rights and the role of literary texts in imagining human rights as well as the way they navigate a range of fields while exploring the complexities of the relationship between literature and human rights.
-In what ways do rights discourse, law, and human rights practice reproduce or challenge social hierarchies of class, gender, race, and sexuality?
-In what ways are rights challenged by hegemonic ideologies and norms?
-Do human rights limit contemporary forms of domination?
-Can rights have a transformative impact in geographies and countries governed by anti-democratic and suppressive regimes?
Abstract submission deadline: 10 February, 2023
Organized by: The department of English Language and Literature of Topkapi University