Grants, Fellowships, and Prizes: Newberry Library Fellowship Opportunities (1.15.15)

Newberry Library Fellowship in the Humanities

If you study the humanities, the Newberry has something for you!

Newberry Library Fellowships provide assistance to researchers who wish to use our collection. We promise you intriguing and often rare materials; a lively, interdisciplinary community of researchers; individual consultations on your research with staff curators, librarians, and other scholars; and an array of both scholarly and public programs.

For more information, visit our website:

The deadline for Short-Term Fellowships is January 15, 2015.

Short-Term Fellowships are available to postdoctoral scholars, PhD candidates, or those who hold other terminal degrees. Unless otherwise noted, applicants must live and work outside of the Chicago area. Applicants must have a specific need for the Newberry’s collection and are required to spend the tenure of the fellowship in residence. The length of a Short-Term Fellowship is one continuous month, but scholars who have an extensive need for the collections may request up to two months. The stipend is $2,500 per month. For more information, including a list of available Short-Term Fellowships, please visit

New Fellowship Opportunity!

The John Rylands Research Institute Exchange Fellowship

This fellowship provides two months of support, one for work at the Newberry and another for work at the John Rylands Library in Manchester, England. The proposed project must link the collections of both libraries; applicants should plan to hold the two fellowships sequentially to ensure continuity of research. All application materials should be submitted to the Newberry, but applications will be reviewed by both institutions. The stipend is $2,500 per month at the Newberry, £1,500 at the John Rylands Library, plus an additional $1,000 (or the equivalent in English pounds) for travel.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to consult the Newberry’s online catalog and collection guides before applying:

Research and Academic Programs
The Newberry Library
60 West Walton Street | Chicago, IL 60610
312-255-3666 |


SSAWW 2015 Panel: On the Boundary between Public and Private: Rethinking Willa Cather’s Letters (DEADLINE EXTENDED January 15, 2015)

On the Boundary between Public and Private: Rethinking Willa Cather’s Letters (DEADLINE EXTENDED January 15, 2015)

The Cather Foundation solicits proposals on topics related to Cather’s letters for a panel at the Society for the Studies of American Women Writers conference in Philadelphia November 4-8, 2015. For many years, biographers and critics who consulted Willa Cather’s letters could refer to their contents only in paraphrase because of restrictions in Cather’s will. Cather’s insistence that her letters not be published or quoted from and stories about the burning of her letters also became a key component of many interpretations of Cather’s life and works. With the lifting of the ban on publication and quotation, the appearance of The Selected Letters of Willa Cather in 2013, a complete digital edition of the letters underway, and the regular discovery of previously-unknown letters, the time is ripe to rethink Cather’s letters and their place in scholarship.

What can Cather’s letters tell us about her works and her life? What can’t they tell us? Now that scholars can quote from her letters, what can we say about Cather’s voice in her letters and her engagement with the letter as genre? Considering the survival of over 3,000 letters in libraries, was Cather as obsessed with privacy as some previously claimed based in part on stories about the destruction of letters? What public function did Cather’s letters have when she wrote them, and what public function to they have now?

Proposals on these and other topics concerning Cather’s letters are solicited. Depending on the number of proposals, more than one panel or a roundtable of shorter presentations may be constructed. Please e-mail a 250-300 word abstract and a 1-page c.v. to Melissa J. Homestead at by January 15, 2015.

CFP: Lydia Maria Child at ALA (1.1.15)

The Lydia Maria Child Society is in the early stages of development. If you would like to be involved, join our listserv at

Call for Papers:

The Lydia Maria Child Society invites proposals for the annual ALA Conference to be held May 21-24, 2015 in Boston, MA.

“Lydia Maria Child and Her Contemporaries”

Given the multi-faceted impact on American culture that she had during her lifetime, many connections can be drawn between Child and her contemporaries. Her pioneering work in children’s literature and domestic advice books made her a familiar household name—as did her widely read journalistic sketches “Letters from New York.” In her contributions to the abolitionist cause, she forged networks with editors, writers, and activists. She participated in the national conversation on Native American rights and removal policies, which she worked into her fiction, thereby helping to establish the form of the American historical novel. Her mutually influential relationship with the transcendentalists is evident throughout her career. This panel seeks papers that explore the links between Child and her contemporaries in ways that illuminate her lasting impact on American culture and society.

Please send 250-300 word abstracts and a 1-page CV to by January 1, 2015. Indicate if you will need any A/V equipment.

CFP for SSAWW 2015: Texas Regional Study Group: “Written By Herself”: Dialogue in African American Women’s Self-Writing (January 20, 2015)

“Written By Herself”: Dialogue in African American Women’s Self-Writing

 CFP: Texas Regional SSAWW group at SSAWW Conference, November 4-8, 2015 in Philadelphia, PA

Deadline: January 20, 2015

The Texas Regional SSAWW group invited scholars to submit abstracts for its panel at the SSAWW Conference. We welcome abstracts about doing scholarly work on the self-writing of black American women. This panel examines autobiographies, memoirs, and diaries of black American women writers and dialogue that develops between the scholars who work on them and the original author and text. 

Over the past two hundred and fifty years African American women writers and literary scholars have collaborated to create and represent the lives and voices of black women: from Frances Smith Foster’s Written by Herself: Literary Production by African American Women, 1746-1892 in 1979 to Akasha Gloria Hull’s discovery and publication of Give Us Each Day: The Diary of Alice Dunbar-Nelson in 1986; from Audre Lorde’s own memoir The Cancer Journals published in 1980 to Joycelyn Moody’s Sentimental Confessions: Spiritual Narratives of Nineteenth- Century African American Women in 2003 and Rhondda Robinson Thomas’ A Nickel and A Prayer: The Autobiography of Jane Edna Hunter in 2011. Continue reading

CFP for SSAWW 2015 Panel: 20th-Century Women Writers and the Natural World (1.12.15)

20th-Century Women Writers and the Natural World

Call for papers for the Society for the Study of American Women Writers 2015 Conference
November 4-8, 2015, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

In the latter part of the twentieth-century, ecofeminists posited the parallel between the subjugation of women and the commodification and exploitation of the natural world.  In a similar vein, and addressing the SSAWW’s conference theme of “Liminal Spaces/Hybrid Lives,” this panel seeks a broad range of papers exploring how 20th-Century American women writers represent their complex relation to natural spaces, landscape, or nonhuman nature.  What does the female subject’s relation to the natural world look like? In what ways do women writers attempt to account for alienation from it? And how do they challenge the oppressive structures that engender this sense of loss? In what ways might they strategically (re)invent relationships with the natural world to advocate for greater connectivity, community-building, and egalitarianism?  Please submit a 250-word abstract and a brief biography to Robert Fillman at by January 12th, 2015.

CFP for SSAWW 2015 Panel: Women of the Harlem Renaissance (1.15.15)

Traditionally, women writers of the Harlem Renaissance era from Nella Larsen to Jessie Redmon Fauset to Marita Bonner, among others, have been under-represented in criticism both past and present. The concept of the New Negro, after all, was gendered male, excluding the value role that women writers would play in not only challenging the pervasive color line but in calling increased attention to the depths of African-American experience that, as Zora Neale Hurston posits, white publishers would not print. Reflecting on the conference theme, “Liminal Spaces, Hybrid Lives,” this panel asks how African-American women writers of the Harlem Renaissance negotiated their dual status as women and black in text. How did authors such as Larsen, Fauset, Hurston, and beyond challenge the limited roles of black women to overcome what many now recognize as a culturally subservient and second-class hybrid status? And how do these works provide new insight into the New Negro woman whose various forms of art and expression helped to resurrect the African-American voice too long silent or silenced?

Continue reading

SSAWW Study Groups: Texas Regional SSAWW Study Group (RSVP by 1.28.15)

The Spring 2015 meeting of the Texas Regional SSAWW Study Group will take place on February 28, 2015 at University of Houston-Downtown, hosted by DoVeanna Fulton. The common reading will be Memoirs of Elleanor Eldridge (1838), edited by Joycelyn Moody (West Virginia UP 2014) and Dr. Moody will be a special guest participant.

* RSVP by January 28th by emailing Danielle Scott (, and please indicate whether you will stay for dinner.

More details regarding location, lodging, parking, etc. will be available soon at our website:

The Study Group is an informal gathering of professors, graduate students, and independent scholars who share an interest in American women’s writing. We share a lunch (provided by the host campus), spend the afternoon discussing the common reading, and have dinner at a local restaurant (paid individually). We welcome new participants to join the conversation, which is always rich and stimulating, and often touches on larger professional concerns (teaching, publishing, mentoring, etc.).

To purchase the Memoirs of Elleanor Eldridge (1838):