Call for Papers–2024 Conference

46th Comparative Drama Conference

Call for Papers

April 4-6, 2024

Orlando, Florida

2024 Keynote Event   

April 5, 2024     8 p.m. (followed by a reception)

A Q&A with Mary Zimmerman

Conducted by Ann Shanahan (University of Wisconsin-Madison)


Abstract Submission Deadline:  20 October 2023

Papers reporting on original investigations and critical analysis of research and developments in the field of drama and theatre are invited for the 46th Comparative Drama Conference, hosted by Rollins College in Orlando, Florida, to be held April 4-6,  2024 . Papers may be comparative across nationalities, periods and disciplines; and may deal with any issue in dramatic literature, criticism, theory, and performance, or any method of historiography, translation, or production. Papers should be 15 minutes in length, written for oral presentation, and accessible to a multi-disciplinary audience. Scholars and artists in all languages and literatures are invited to email a 250 word abstract in English to William C. Boles at by 20 October 2023. Please include paper title, author’s name, status (faculty, graduate student, other/scholar-at-large), institutional affiliation, and postal address at top left. Abstracts must present a clear argument and have an appropriate scope (usually two or fewer works).  Please send your abstract in .docx, .txt, or .rtf format.  If possible, please avoid sending a .pdf. (PLEASE be sure to add to your accepted email list so that conference emails will not be rejected by your server. Ask your IT administrator how to do so.) If you do not receive e-mail confirmation that we received your abstract/submission within 14 days, we did not receive your submission. Please contact us immediately at Those whose abstracts are accepted for presentation are expected to attend the conference. Due to the number of submissions, the adjudicators are unable to offer specific feedback on panels, abstracts, or scripts. Abstracts will be printed in the conference program. Accepted presentations will be scheduled in a room with a projector, screen, and speakers. If you wish to use a laptop, please bring your own as well as a dongle.  We do not provide remote control devices.

Pre-organized Panels

Pre-organized Panels and Roundtables will also be considered. A pre-organized panel should include three papers. Each paper should be 15 minutes in length. Panel proposals should include (1) a copy of each panelist’s 250 word abstract with paper title, author’s name, institutional affiliation, status, postal address and email address at top left, and (2) a succinct, 50-word rationale for the grouping of the papers. The panel organizer should email the abstracts and rationale to by 20 October 2023.  Please send your abstract in .docx, .txt, or .rtf format. If possible, avoid sending a .pdf.

A pre-organized round table should include at least four participants. Round table proposals should include (1) a succinct, 50 word explanation of and rationale for the round table topic, (2) a timeline of the program, including time for audience interaction and Q & A, and (3) clear evidence of each participant’s expertise in the topic area. Do not send entire vitae. Include only evidence applicable to the round table topic. The panel or round table organizer should email the abstracts and rationale to by 20 October 2023. Please send your abstract in .docx, .txt, or .rtf format.  Please avoid sending a .pdf file.

If you would like to advertise a pre-organized panel on the CDC website, please send the panel title, organizer contact information, deadline, and description to immediately. Please send your abstract in .docx, .txt, or .rtf format.

To see the call for pre-organized panels, visit our Pre-organized Panels page.

Staged Readings

The conference board invites proposals for staged readings of new plays.  Two full-length (one-act or more) new plays will receive staged readings during the course of the conference.  Each staged reading will be followed by a talkback with the audience led by a dramaturg.  This year, we will have two slots for a 90-minute staged reading.  If you would prefer to have your play staged by a director and/or with a cast of your own choosing, please include their information as part of the proposal; otherwise, a director and actors may be assigned by the Conference Director in coordination with the Resident Dramaturg and a director from the Comparative Drama Conference.  Those proposing a staged reading should submit the play’s title, character list, a 200 word summary of the play, a 100 word rationale for staging a reading of the play at this conference, and an exemplary scene or act in Word Document form to by 20 October 2023.

Virtual Papers and Panels

Recognizing the financial difficulties of institutions and the expense of travel, there will be a separate virtual conference that will run throughout the three days of the conference.  Participants at the virtual conference will not be able to access the in person papers.  We will not be running any hybrid sessions.  If you are interested in giving a paper or creating a panel that will meet virtually, please follow the directions above and send in your abstract/proposal by 1 20ctober 2023.

Session Chairs

Submitters and non-submitters of abstracts who are interested in chairing a session at the conference are invited to send a two-paragraph resume highlighting their areas of expertise to by 1 December 2023.

Comparative Drama Publication

The conference has paired with the academic journal Comparative Drama to publish an annual issue presenting the best papers (in person or virtual) given at the conference.  More information will be provided to those accepted to the conference. 

The Conference

The Comparative Drama Conference is an international, interdisciplinary conference founded by Dr. Karelisa Hartigan at the University of Florida in 1977. Every year, approximately 175 scholars are invited to present and discuss their work in the field of drama and 2 new plays receive a staged reading. The conference draws participants from both the Humanities and the Arts. The papers delivered range over the entire field of theatre research and production. Over the past 40 years and some, participants have come from 32 nations and all 50 states. Each year a distinguished theatre scholar or artist is invited to address the participants in the Keynote Event.


Submitters of abstracts will be notified by email on or before the 26 November 2023 as to the board’s decision regarding their abstracts. Those submitters whose proposed papers are accepted for presentation will be asked to prepare full papers, suitable for 15-minute readings, for delivery at the conference. Those whose papers are accepted are expected to attend the conference. Presenters are required to pre-register.

The 2024 pre-registration fees (through March 1, 2024) are as follows:

1. Presenter, Reader or Presenter Session Chair: $125  for faculty members,  $100 for graduate students
2. Non-presenter Session Chair: $80
3. Guest: $70
4. Student Guest: $40
5. One day guest passes: $30 for non-students ($20 for students)

The pre-registration fee for categories 1–4 covers all conference events and services including a copy of the conference Programs and Abstracts book, a copy of the current edition of Text and Presentation, admission to all conference events, and admission to the conference reception.

For those who wish to register after March 1, 2024 or at the conference, the fees increase to $145 (faculty)/$110 (grad student), $90 (Non-presenter Session chair), $80 (guest), and $50 (Student guest) respectively.  Submitters of abstracts are also advised to apply for travel funds from their home institutions as early as possible.

Please circulate this announcement to other interested parties.

Contact us at for more information.

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