The 44th German Studies Association Conference in Washington, D.C., from October 1-4, 2020 will continue to host a series of seminars in addition to conference sessions and roundtables (for general conference information see https://www.thegsa.org/conference).
Seminars meet for all three days of the conference. They explore new avenues of academic exchange and foster extended discussion, rigorous intellectual debate, and intensified networking. Seminars are typically proposed and led by two to three conveners (in special cases, there may be four conveners) and must consist of a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 20 participants, including the conveners themselves and any auditors. Conveners are expected to make every effort to aim for broad diversity and include scholars from different disciplines and at different career stages, including graduate students. Seminars may enable extended discussion of a recent academic publication; the exploration of a promising new research topic; engagement with pre-circulated papers; an opportunity to debate the work of scholars with different approaches; the coming together of scholars seeking to develop an anthology; or the in-depth discussion of a political or public policy issue, novel, film, poem, musical piece, painting, or other artwork. Conveners are strongly encouraged to structure their seminars around creative and engaging forms of intellectual exchange; lengthy individual presentations are discouraged as they imitate “traditional” panels and may hamper discussion, collaboration, and innovative thinking.
In order to facilitate extended discussion, seminar conveners and participants are required to participate in all three seminar meetings. Please note that both seminar conveners and seminar applicants who have been accepted for seminar participation will not be allowed to submit a paper in a regular panel session. However, they may take on one additional role in the conference independent of their role in a seminar – as moderator or commentator on another session or as a participant in a roundtable. In addition, seminar conveners must come from different institutions (where there are more than two conveners, no more than two may come from the same institution).
Although the GSA does accept proposals from conveners who have directed a seminar during the past two consecutive years, the GSA’s Seminar Committee gives preference to newcomers and thus encourages the rotation of seminar conveners in similarly-themed seminars. We further recommend that conveners contact the coordinators of the Interdisciplinary Network Committee, Professors Heather Mathews (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Winson Chu (email@example.com), to connect with GSA Networks close to their topic.
Starting in 2020, seminar conveners will have the opportunity to propose a cluster of pieces representing the work of the seminar for publication in Konturen, a peer-reviewed, online, open-access journal of international and interdisciplinary German Studies (see http://journals.oregondigital.org/index.php/konturen/pages/view/gsalanding for more information). Please note: although the portal for applications for publication in Konturen will only open in October, 2020 (after the conference is over), conveners may address their interest in this project in their seminar description.
Applying to convene a seminar is a two-step process. Initially, the Seminar Committee invites GSA members to submit a preliminary proposal that includes the following items:
a. Title of proposed seminar
b. Names, ranks, and institutional affiliations of conveners
c. A 150-word description of the seminar's subject (which will eventually be used in the call for participants, the printed program, and the online program/mobile app)
d. A 50-word description of the seminar’s format (which will appear in the call for participants, etc.)
e. A 200-word statement of seminar goals and procedures.
These items are due by November 22, 2019, by 11:59 pm EST. Please submit your application online at https://www.xcdsystem.com/gsa. Your username and password are the same as those you use to log in to your GSA profile at https://thegsa.org/members/profile. Please note that you must be a current member of the GSA to submit a proposal. If your password needs to be reset, please contact Ms. Ursula Sykes (firstname.lastname@example.org) at Johns Hopkins University Press. If technical questions or problems arise with the submission interface itself, please contact Benita Blessing (email@example.com).
Following the submission of preliminary proposals, the GSA Seminar Committee will provide suggestions and assistance for the final submission, which is due by December 6, 2019, 11:59 pm EST to the same website. The Committee will then review seminar proposals and post a list of approved seminars and their topics on the GSA website by January 6, 2020. Conveners may then enlist participants to join the seminar. A call for auditors (who may observe but who are not considered formal participants) will be issued later in the year, once the final conference program has been published.
The GSA Seminar Committee consists of:
Joe Perry (Georgia State University) firstname.lastname@example.org (chair)
Elizabeth Drummond (Loyola Marymount University) email@example.com
Richard Langston (University of North Carolina) firstname.lastname@example.org
Please direct inquiries to all three of us. Thank you for your support of the GSA’s seminar program!