Call for Papers

IABA Europe 2017: Life Writing, Europe, and New Media


The Centre for Life-Writing Research at King’s College London and the European Research Council- Funded ‘Ego-Media’ project are delighted to be hosting the IABA Europe conference in London from the 7th-9th June 2017. The conference will highlight digital and new media. Changes in technologies of information and communication affect our everyday lives, research and teaching: key questions for the conference will be how new media have transformed both lives and life writing. We hope scholars working on other topics and earlier times will find it interesting to explore the transformations the digital is effecting in their fields. We also welcome contributions where the emphasis falls on other concerns of particular urgency for the IABA community – for example conflict, displacement, migration and refugees; women’s lives; LGBT+ lives; issues of national and European identities.


Confirmed speakers include:

Laurie McNeill, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

John Zuern, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa

Sidonie Smith, Mary Fair Croushore Professor of the Humanities and Director, Institute for the Humanities, University of Michigan

Julia Watson, Professor, Dept. of Comparative Studies, Emerita, The Ohio State University


Topics may include, but need not be confined to, the following:

Diaries, blogs, vlogs

The digital everyday

Digital and literary forms

Digital arts and life writing

Social Media platforms

Migrants’ and refugees’ stories

Citizenship and the digital

Life (writing) after Brexit

Space, place and virtuality/the local and the global

Digital identities

European identities


Multimedia lives

Digital natures

Health, well-being and the digital self

The networked self

Sharing, Liking, and digital agency

Digitised lives

Future lives

Digital violence

Online abuse/trolling

Women’s writing



digital activism and advocacy

methodologies and histories

audiences and reading practices

digital language and languages

online sociolinguistics

digital aesthetics and affects

technology and metaphor: digital metaphors we live by

performing lives

virtual creativity

online (dis)embodiment and (im)materiality


pre-digital media — cinema, television, print or manuscript

economy, austerity, and the digital

big data /the quantified self

forms of play


We are also planning to include workshops in which life writing projects or groups can present their work.

Proposals are encouraged including participation by creative practitioners. Proposals for panels and alternative formats are also welcome. Indeed, we very much want to vary the pattern from groups of 20-minute papers. If you’d be interested in participating in something like a ‘lightning round’ let us know what topic(s) you’d most like to speak about.


Please send proposals to: by 31 January 2017


Clare Brant and Max Saunders, on behalf of the IABA-Europe 2017 Organising Committee