Call for Papers: Islands on Sale

Please click for PDF of the CFP.

Islands on Sale

New Zealand and Pacific Arts in the Global Marketplace

30 June-1 July, 2017

Regent’s University, London

co-hosted by the

University of Northampton

in association with

Te Kāhui Rangahau Kōrero mō Aotearoa New Zealand Studies Network


This conference will be devoted to the discussion of recent developments affecting the production and reception of New Zealand and Pacific literary, visual and performance arts in a global context. It will focus on a range of issues related to the creation, reception, study, translation and marketing of these forms of expression. Whereas on the one hand New Zealand and Pacific arts are being created and circulated as deriving from culturally specific locations, they have also been received, translated, taught and marketed as part of the more broadly defined category of ‘world’ culture. In considering the  position  of  these  works  in  the  global  cultural  marketplace,  we invite contributors to reflect on the extent to which national and regional labels  (essential to the definition and development of New Zealand and Pacific cultural expression in the postcolonial period) are being reformulated and reconfigured to accommodate the effects of diaspora, globalization and transnationalism on literary, visual and performance arts, or alternatively in order  to resist the commodifying impositions of the global marketplace.

We particularly welcome submissions that address one or more of the following questions.

  • How are New Zealand/Pacific authors, artists and playwrights negotiating their position in the global sphere by e.g. capturing new readers, viewers/ audiences and/or reconfiguring familiar genres in line with the global expectations?
  • How have global concerns affecting the Pacific (such as nuclear testing, global warming, environmental changes) been reflected in the arts of the region and their international circulation?
  • How do NZ and Pacific arts feature in university courses or academic events and what specific academic approaches contribute to institutionalize certain views of these arts and the region?
  • Is there a canon of translated New Zealand/Pacific texts? What are the most significant strategies employed in the linguistic or cultural translation of these texts?
  • What are  the  effects  of  new  technologies  and  social  media  in  the  dissemination  and publicizing of NZ/Pacific arts in the cyberspace?
  • How have prominent films and television series (like Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Piano, Whale Rider, The Tribe and Top of the Lake, etc.) influenced the internationalization and branding of New Zealand and Pacific arts?
  • What has been the impact on the dissemination and marketing of specific works and artists by signal events (such as NZ as ‘guest of honour’ at the 2012 Frankfurt Book Fair), prestigious awards (such as Keri Hulme’s or Eleanor Catton’s Booker Prizes) or the prominent feting of performers (such as Lemi Ponifasio’s MAU) at International arts festivals?
  • What effects have the researching, publicizing and re-branding of nationally renowned authors (such as Janet Frame and Witi Ihimaera) and performers (such as Cliff Curtis & Lorde) and sports teams (namely the All Blacks) had on the NZ’s cultural body in its relation to the global marketplace? What tensions do they point to?
  • How do literary and arts markets sanction forms of cultural appropriation, including the black American influence on NZ/Pacific aesthetics?
  • How are NZ/Pacific-oriented literary and arts markets aided by the fact that the regions’ indigenous communities are Anglophone?
  • What processes contribute to the wide mobility of NZ/Pacific visual art so that commissioned works come to rest in European museums in corporate headquarters?


Contributors may address the topic through different critical perspectives and disciplines (world literature studies, performance studies, art history, postcolonial studies, translation studies, reception studies, book history, sociology of literature, cultural studies, etc). Contributors may also choose to participate in the performance strand of the conference that will interconnect papers, film screenings and live arts.

Please submit your 200-word abstracts for a twenty-minute paper to the conference organizers:

Please submit your proposals for the performance strand to:



The deadline for all submissions is 28 February, 2017.

There will be an edited collection of essays deriving from the conference.