Dear NeMLA Members,
It is an honor for me to welcome you to the 48th NeMLA Annual Convention! The 2017 convention will take place in Baltimore and is hosted by Johns Hopkins University, with the continued administrative support of the University at Buffalo, SUNY.
The theme of the conference complies with the outcomes of a report produced by the Modern Language Association (MLA), our umbrella organization, in light of the tragic events of 9/11. This tragedy, whose effects still reverberate across US society, also brought into relief the difficulties in the U.S. of communicating with and comprehending other cultures and languages. As a consequence, different initiatives emerged at the Congressional level including legislative proposals to address the deficit in language and international expertise.
The MLA report reads, “In the context of globalization and in the post–9/11 environment, then, the usefulness of studying languages other than English is no longer contested… At one end, language is considered to be principally instrumental, a skill to use for communicating thought and information. At the opposite end, language is understood as an essential element of a human being’s thought processes, perceptions, and self-expressions; and as such it is considered to be at the core of translingual and transcultural competence. While we use language to communicate our needs to others, language simultaneously reveals us to others and to ourselves. Language is a complex multifunctional phenomenon that links an individual to other individuals, to communities, and to national cultures.”
Hence, in the spirit of this scholarly inquiry, we welcome debates that may help us to better understand and embrace the United States’ vast cultural and linguistic diversity, as well as that of the rest of the world.
Local Host Institution: Johns Hopkins University
The 48th Annual Convention of the Northeast Modern Language Association will meet March 23 to 26, 2017, and will feature approximately 400 sessions, as well as dynamic speakers and cultural events. Every year, this event affords NeMLA’s principal opportunity to carry on a tradition of lively research and pedagogical exchange in language and literature. The theme of this year's convention is "Translingual and Transcultural Competence: Toward a Multilingual Future in the Global Era."
Baltimore has been pivotal to United States art, culture, and history, serving as a site for significant activism to bring awareness to issues of national importance. Destinations include the Edgar Allan Poe House; artistic and cultural collections at the Walters Art Museum and the Lewis Museum of African American History, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Everyman Theater, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, and much more!
The 48th annual convention will be held at the Marriott Baltimore Waterfront. Located in the scenic Harbor East District, the area provides excellent opportunities for attendees to enjoy the fine dining, entertainment, and culture that Baltimore has to offer.
For information about Baltimore, visit http://baltimore.org/
Special thanks to the generous support of: Johns Hopkins University