43rd Annual Conference of the Semiotic Society of America

Academic Meeting
43rd Annual Conference of the Semiotic Society of America

This year’s Conference theme: "Signs of Resilience in a Complex World" speaks to the sustainability and thrivability of our culture, environment, society, and politics. Resilience is much more than a fashionable buzz-word. Originally developed as an ecological concept, resilience is congruent with the maintenance of semioethical responsibilities and the preservation of human
integrity. Given our cultural, social, and political climate, we believe the topic of resilience is timely. It also addresses the resilience of semiotic consciousness and the important contributions of semioticians to the understanding and renewal of the lifeworld. In a complex and rapidly changing world marked by profound instability and a precarious future, the heart of the challenge we face is something far greater than coping. Rather, we need to develop semiotic habits that allow us to learn how to navigate through the transmodern world creatively and resiliently.
We anticipate that this theme will stimulate provocative thoughts and inspiring ideas about the
intimate relationship between signs and resilience by responding to a host of questions, such as:

  • Why are signs of resilience more relevant than ever in contemporary societies?
  • What are the connections between semiotic interpretations and resilient thinking?
  • How do sign systems contribute to the resilience associated with the chrysalis process of reconstructing reality?
  • In what ways do signs of resilience respond to the antinomies of the true and untrue, the real and imaginary?

As always, we welcome abstracts on any subject with a connection to semiotics (both theoretical and applied), not solely those inspired by this year’s theme. We encourage you to reach out to your semiotically-inclined colleagues by organizing thematic sessions or panels, as well as by submitting individual papers and posters. Our Society is interdisciplinary and international, and we welcome voices from colleagues from all disciplines and countries. We intend to reserve panel slots specifically for papers from non-English speakers, although the official language of the conference is English.
Please visit EasyChair at to submit your abstract or proposal for panels and poster sessions. If you have any problem accessing the website, please contact us. (Note to our non-English speakers: while papers may be submitted in your native language, all abstracts must be submitted in English.)
Because of the anticipated larger than normal participation this year, we encourage early submissions. The deadline for submissions is May 7, 2018. Please include the following information in your submission:

  1. Author’s name
  2. Institutional affiliation and academic status
  3. Email address
  4. Title of abstract (in English)
  5. A maximum of 150-word abstract (in English)
  6. Keywords (maximum of six words in English)

Abstracts for individual papers or panels and organized sessions (3-4 papers) as well as poster presentations must include all of the above information. Papers are for a 20-minute presentation. Please indicate in your abstract submission if you plan to present your paper in other language than English. An acknowledgment of receipt of your abstract will be sent to you within two weeks from the date of submission. Electronic letters of acceptance will be sent to the selected participants starting March 19, 2018, and will continue until June 30, 2018.

Papers presented at the meeting will also be considered for publication in Semiotics 2018, the Yearbook of the Semiotic Society of America. The SSA Yearbook is an annual peer-reviewed publication series sponsored by the Semiotic Society of America, providing both a timely overview of current developments in semiotic research and a regular outlet for members of the Society to publish papers on their current work. Further details and deadlines will be specified in the Annual Conference Program.

Student submissions are eligible for the Roberta Kevelson Award, which will honor the best student paper presented at the 2018 Annual Conference. Students who wish to be considered for the Kevelson Award should indicate their interest on EasyChair at the time of abstract submission. Full paper submissions must be uploaded to EasyChair by September 21, 2018. Questions regarding the Roberta Kevelson Award should be directed to the review committee chair, Dr. Frank Macke at fmacke [at]

Special Events
In addition to scheduled paper sessions, there will also be keynote and plenary speakers. The Presidential Address will be delivered by Deborah Eicher-Catt, Professor of Communication Arts & Sciences at Pennsylvania State University-York.

Berea College in Berea, Kentucky is the host institution for the 43rd SSA Annual Conference

  • Lunches, dinners, and keynote/plenary speakers at the Boone Tavern and Hotel
  • Breakout sessions at the Presser Hall, Berea College

Accommodation is at the Charming Historical Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant in Berea at 100 Main St. N., Berea, KY 40403. For room booking contact the hotel at (859) 985-3700 and ask for the group block (Semiotic of America), or go to the website: and select the date and “BOOK NOW” button at the top. From that screen select “change request” at the bottom. Use the group code of 144190 in “Group ID.” The average price ranges from $100.00 and $109.00 per night for single room. Your block will be open at the group rate until September 3, 2018. After that date, all the remaining rooms in the block will go back to hotel inventory for general-public selling.

The airport to fly to is Lexington, KY, Bluegrass Airport Free of charge shuttles every 60–90 minutes will be provided from the airport to Berea. Some people may choose to fly to Cincinnati and rent a car (CVG).

SSA Membership and Conference Registration Fees
Please note that in accordance with Article 4, Section 4 of the SSA Constitution: “Only Individual, Student, and Honorary members in good standing may offer papers to the Program Committee for presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society.” Membership must be in good standing at or before the time of abstract submission.

Membership Fees:

  • SSA Membership Dues (Regular) – $75.00USD
  • SSA Membership Dues (Student) – $50.00USD

Conference Registration Fees:

  • Conference Registration (Regular) – $175.00 (late registration of $200.00 after August 26, 2018) Onsite regular registration is $225.00
  • Conference Registration (Student) – $80.00 (late registration of $90.00 after August 26, 2018) Onsite student registration is $100.00
  • Special day-passes for local faculty, staff, and students will be available in order to hear paper presentations ($15.00USD/day). If passes are purchased in advance: $13.00/day.
  • Day passes do not include any of the meals.

Meals Fee:
There will be a separate fee (of approximately $120) for the conference meals packet (which will include 3 lunches, 1 dinner banquet, and a welcome reception). Check back on our web-site for updated information about the meal plan.

To join the Society and register for the conference, please visit: or call: +01-434-220-3300, Toll Free: 1-800-444-2419 (US & Canada).

2018 Program Committee

  • Farouk Y. Seif, Chair, Antioch University Seattle, Washington
  • Baranna Baker, Portland, Oregon
  • Priscila Borges, University of Brasília, Brazil
  • Javier Clavere, Berea College, Kentucky
  • Deborah Eicher-Catt, The Pennsylvania State University-York
  • Jamin Pelkey, Ryerson University, Canada
  • Steven Skaggs, University of Louisville, Kentucky
  • Dora Ivonne Alvarez Tamayo, UPAEP, Mexico
Call for Papers: May 7, 2018 (All day)
Meeting: October 3, 2018 (All day) to October 7, 2018 (All day)
Berea College, Berea, Kentucky, USA
Jan 30, 2018, 09:54 by Mats Bergman
Last revised: 
Jan 30, 2018, 09:58 by Mats Bergman