The Comparative Literature Intra-Student Faculty Forum (CLIFF) is an annual conference sponsored by the graduate students of the Department of Comparative Literature. CLIFF is designed to promote increased awareness of research being conducted in various languages and interdisciplinary studies at the University of Michigan.

More information on the next CLIFF March 13-14, 2014 will be forthcoming. Please see the call for papers announcement. 

(In)audible: Inquiries into Sound and the Auditory Imagination

Keynote Speaker: Christine Sun Kim
Sound Artist and Composer

“The ‘auditory imagination’ is the feeling for syllable and rhythm, penetrating far below the conscious levels of thought and feeling, invigorating every word.”  --T.S. Eliot

We are inviting papers from a variety of different perspectives that contemplate sound and what T.S. Eliot has termed the ‘auditory imagination.’ While papers may address poetry, rhythm, and music, we also welcome broader investigations into how sound functions in all varieties of cultural production. Is it possible to construct a cultural history of sound? What are the social and political implications of sound and listening?

Possible topics include:

-The relationship between music, poetics, and prosody
-The relationship between sound and power
-Sound and performativity
-The sonic nature of being, communication, and intersubjectivity
-Sound and memory
-Aesthetic movements and new sound media (iPod, gramophone, radio)
-Oral traditions and genre (epic, folktales, etc.)
-The translation of sound across literatures and/or cultural traditions

These are intentionally broad-ranging topics; we welcome work that addresses any part of them or related concerns. We hope to receive proposals from a wide variety of fields, including literature, cinema studies, radio, television and communication, new media studies, music, musicology, popular music studies, anthropology, and cultural studies.

Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words for 15-minute paper presentations by DECEMBER 20th, 2013 to