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MLA Convention Blog

Leaving Los Angeles

Photo of Rosemary G. Feal As the first new convention draws to a close, I saw many sights I thought I’d never see at the annual meeting. There were bloggers and tweeters in special areas of meeting rooms sending out instantaneous commentary on the sessions. The Academy in Hard Times initiative brought together attendees to discuss some of the hardest challenges we face. Over a hundred and fifty people gathered after Sidonie Smith’s Presidential Address for a reception they hadn’t known about in advance. Some brave attendees ran (and walked) through downtown streets early one morning for what most found to be a fun run. I heard Creative Conversations that placed all participants (including the audience) in lively, interactive dialogues. People told me how glad they were that the MLA organized some cultural events and how happy they were that we put an end to late-evening formal sessions. I also saw first-hand how the new convention creates problems we didn’t face before, such as the conflicts with the start of classes or with other meetings that take place during the January dates. It’s too early to say, but all signs indicate that what’s great is going to outweigh what’s not-so-great when it comes to the MLA convention. And I’m feeling very good about that right now. I wish you all safe travels back home, and I can’t wait to hear more from you about how you found the 2011 convention. Please write me at Thank you.

Rosemary G. Feal
MLA Executive Director
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© 2015 Modern Language Association. Last updated 02/12/2014.