112th Annual Conference - Riverside Convention Center, California
Friday, October 31 - Sunday, November 2, 2014

This page is about the 2014 conference. For 2015 conference info, go to PAMLA 2015.

Autobiography I: Big Stories, Little Stories: New and Old Modes of Self-Narrative

Session Chair: 
Tanya Heflin, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Session 1: Friday 9:00-10:30am
RCC Meeting Room 4
Topic Area: 


  1. Tesla Schaeffer, University of Washington
    This project considers the genre of memoir in conversation with current work in trauma theory and discourse. I analyze two “traumatic” memoirs – Helene Cooper’s House at Sugar Beach and Dave Eggers’ What is the What – in order to contend that the genre is in a unique position to expose the limits of empathy in traumatic representation. 
  2. Michael Humphrey, Colorado State University
    Scholars of identity and narrative continue to debate what constitutes a life story. This presentation examines narrative arc’s place in schemas of performers and audiences who are primed to “Tell a story” and proposes hypotheses to be tested with content analysis methods.
  3. Aria Cabot, "University of Wisconsin, Madison"
    Scholarly studies on the Italian autobiography have focused almost exclusively on eighteenth-century male writers, while little attention has been paid to pre-nineteenth-century autobiographies authored by women. I attempt to trace the making of the Italian women’s autobiography by focusing on four autobiographical narratives produced between the mid-seventeenth and early-eighteenth centuries  by women of vastly different social and cultural backgrounds.
Session Cancelled: