Call for Papers: Toponyms and Literaryscapes (ANS, 7-10 January 2021)

The American Name Society is issuing its First Call for Papers for the ANS panel at the Modern Language Association (MLA) Convention (7-10 January 2021, Toronto, Canada)

Although toponyms are often taken for granted in our daily lives, they bear considerable potential for acquiring personal and social meanings depending on their contexts and co-texts of use. These multi-layered meanings are often utilized by authors as a literary resource to evoke associations or invoke evaluative positioning. Papers accepted for this panel will explore how the meaning potential of place-names – be they real or fictional – is effectively harnessed to shape literary settings within specific works or by specific authors. Examples of themes that can be addressed include toponyms choice/invention and their connotations; toponyms in translation; toponyms in literary theory; and toponyms and intertextuality.

Proposal Submission Process:

1. Abstracts proposals (350 words) should be sent as an email attachment (PDF format) to Dr. Luisa Caiazzo (;

2. Proposals should include “MLA 2020 proposal” in the subject line of the email;

3. All submissions must include an abstract title, the full name(s) of the author(s), the author(s) affiliation(s), and email address(s) in the body of the email and NOT with the abstract;

4. DEADLINE: Proposals must be received by 8pm GMT on 30 April 2020. Authors will be notified about the results of the blind review on or by 8 May 2020;

5. Contributors selected for the thematic panel must be members of both MLA and ANS in order to present their papers;

6. For further information, please contact Dr. Luisa Caiazzo (