The conference will take place from Thursday, May 25, to Saturday, May 27, 2023, starting around 9.00 am on Thursday and ending in the late afternoon on Saturday.

A preliminary program will be distributed and posted on the conference website in February.

Keynote Lectures

Kristin Hoganson (University of Illinois)
The Tell-Tale Heart: Reconsidering the Mythical Core of the Nation in Light of the Turn to the Global

The heartland myth holds up the small town and rural Midwest as the quintessentially all-American place. Celebrants regard the heartland nostalgically, believing that it is under siege; critics associate it with exclusionary and small-minded impulses. Love it or hate it, Americans tend to regard the heartland as local, insulated, isolationist, and provincial; as the ultimate national safe space. This talk considers how local histories that look both in and out can challenge such conceptions, helping us to root U.S. history more deeply in global history and to counter imperial denial.

Imre Szeman (University of Waterloo)
The Future of the Sun

”The Future of the Sun” assesses claims being made about the best approach to energy transition and the shape of the renewable world that lies just over the horizon. Nation-states and entrepreneurs are offering publics competing visions of energy and environmental futures, even as right-wing ideologues fight to ensure the future looks much like the past. This lecture will provide an account of the discursive struggles now being fought to establish (in the words of Bill Gates) “the dull, factually correct middle” in which our green futures are supposed to be lived out.

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