Special Session at the Pacific Ancient and Modern Language Association (PAMLA) Conference Las Vegas: “City of God, City of Destruction”
Presiding Officer: Melanie Marotta (Morgan State University)
Currently, we are amidst a Cyberpunk renaissance, a rebirth of interest in this subgenre of Science Fiction. While traditionally this subgenre has focused on the console cowboy figure as its protagonist, recent additions to the subgenre have shown that it may be on its way to becoming more diverse. As PAMLA’s conference theme is “City of God, City of Destruction,” abstracts concentrating on the “high tech, low life” aspect of cyberpunk, specifically that pertaining to the portrayal of urban space, are particularly welcomed. Cyberpunk is inclusive of images of urban landscapes, ranging from futuristic versions of the actual (Neil Stephenson’s Los Angeles, William Gibson’s Kowloon Walled City and the Sprawl) to the imaginary (Cyberpunk 2077’s Night City), each showcasing the artifice of the future. These cityscapes reveal technological advances that create an even deeper class divide and are meant to distract from the environmental devastation and great poverty that exist outside these spaces. This panel welcomes submissions about literature, film, television, and gaming. Feel free to submit an abstract pertaining to the conference theme or otherwise. Please contact me if you have any questions.