The Work of Exile: Loss, Challenge, and Possibility in Southern California

April 10-11, 2015, Fullerton, CA

This interdisciplinary conference explores the intellectual, artistic, and scientific work of political exiles in Southern California during the twentieth century. We are especially interested in how the works of exiles mediate the tensions between past and present, here and there; whether or how the experience of exile in Southern California had a significant influence on their work; and whether or in what ways this work has left a lasting impact on the region.

For more information, please visit

Call for papers

Please submit a paper dealing with exiles – understood here as those who were forced or felt compelled to leave their countries for political reasons – from any region of the world, during any period of the twentieth century.

Possible paper topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Works as mediation of tensions between the world left behind and the world of exile.
  • Critical perspectives on American/Californian cultures in the work of exiles.
  • Artistic, philosophical, scientific innovations achieved during exile in Southern California.
  • Changes in styles, theoretical approaches, or methods related to the experience of exile.
  • Reception in the U.S. and countries of origin of works completed in exile in Southern California.
  • Impact of the works of Southern California exiles on the region.

Further suggestions:

Works of exiles in Southern California that address or suggest themes such as

  • California as Utopia / Dystopia; Enchantment and Disenchantment
  • Nationalism, traditionalism, and multiculturalism; ‘enemy aliens’ and Anti-Americanism
  • Capitalism, Socialism, Fascism, or Democracy
  • Memory, nostalgia, loss
  • The transformation of the meaning, practice or institutions of science
  • Displacement, absence, and presence
  • Home, belonging, and the ambiguity of exile
  • Clash or synthesis between pop culture and the avant garde
  • Language, translation and interpretation
  • The construction of Americanism in the work of exiles
  • Intersections of science and race or ethnicity
  • Science, technology and gender

Please submit an abstract of 250-300 words to or

Deadline: December 1, 2014

Posted: October 06, 2014