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CFP: Cross-Currents: the Indian Novels of Elizabeth Oakes Smith (Deadline: 12.28.2017)

 Cross-Currents:  the Indian Novels of Elizabeth Oakes Smith

A Special Session for the American Literature Association Conference, San Francisco May 24-27, 2018

While it remains important to continue to re-locate Oakes Smith’s place in cultural conversations of her time—for example, relating recently recovered novels such as The Western Captive to other representations of Native Americans in the 1830s and 40s, or to other antebellum representations of women—one of the next steps in the full-scale recovery of Elizabeth Oakes Smith is the tracing of a variety of elements within, between or among her own works as they were published in the nineteenth century.   How did Oakes-Smith’s writing change over the course of her career in response to different audiences, changing political conditions, or even stylistically in her development as a prosewriter?

Using Caroline Woidat’s recent work on The Western Captive (1842) as a starting point, the proposed panel would reveal the complexity and development of Oakes Smith’s professional situation, her political aims, and literary strategies in her “Indian” novels, specifically—at least two of which (The Sagamore of Saco and The Bald Eagle) appeared in markedly different forms during her career.   Papers might focus on the following topics, among others:

Representations/Rhetorical Positioning of Native Americans

Figures of Female Adoption/Assimilation

Transcendentalist Philosophy/Representations of Nature

Representations of Masculinity

Writing for the Masses (“Books for the People”/Beadle’s Dime Novel series)

Explorations/Revisions of “American” History

Internal Colonization


Warring Parties

The Native/American Hero

Frontiers/Liminal Spaces

Novels, Nation and Indian Policy

Maps, Place and Geography


Marriage and Miscegenation

Women on the Frontier

Animal Symbolism/Animal Violence

Please send 250 word abstracts with relevant portions of your c.v. to Timothy H. Scherman ( by December 28, 2017.   Links to available forms of these texts will be available at our website, by November 21.  Please circulate this CFP as widely as possible.


Call for Nominations: 2018 Lydia Maria Child Society Social Justice Awards (Deadline 4.15.2018)

In keeping with our society’s goal of honoring and continuing Lydia Maria Child’s vision of and work toward social justice, the Lydia Maria Child Society is pleased to offer three awards recognizing scholarship and creative work that furthers social change: one for faculty or other professionals, one for scholars/artists at the graduate level, and one for high school and undergraduate students. Child routinely wrote on behalf of the marginalized, emerging as a passionate advocate for slaves, Native Americans, prisoners, prostitutes, and even animals, among a host of others. Our society aims to recognize academic writing, pedagogical endeavors, or creative projects that, like Child’s work, speak to pressing social causes or that foreground the voices of (oftentimes neglected) authors who have worked to produce socially conscious writing. To apply for either award or to nominate a colleague, friend, or student, please send to by April 15, with “Social justice award” as the subject line of your email, a letter detailing the ways in which your own or your nominee’s literary scholarship or creative work engages with current social justice concerns. You are also welcome, though not required, to include a writing sample that demonstrates this engagement. These samples may take the form of essays (or essay excerpts), course syllabi, or descriptions of projects that explore the intersections between American literature/history and social justice outside the academic classroom.
Applications should be sent as Word documents and should not exceed 15 pages. While we will be happy to receive submissions that consider Child directly, Child need not be included in order for projects to be eligible; we welcome projects on a variety of authors, genres, periods, and/or concerns. Winners will be recognized at the upcoming American Literature Association conference in San Francisco (May 2018) and will receive a monetary award of $100, though they need not be present at the conference in order to be eligible for the award. We look forward to reading your submissions.

CFP: Special Issue-Medical Women in 19th-Century American Literature

Arizona Quarterly: A Journal of American Literature, Culture, and Theory
Special Issue: Medical Women in 19th-Century American Literature
This special issue of Arizona Quarterly seeks essays that engage with literature containing medical women or women in the sciences in 19th-century America. In the midst of a controversy between William Lloyd Garrison and the Gynecological Society of Boston, the Society referred to women physicians, or “skirted practitioners,” as a “third sex,” as inhabiting a space somehow between or outside the male/female gender binary. Despite the Gynecological Society’s intent at harm, their claim can be reinterpreted as a description of the way 19th-century women in the sciences transgress gender binaries by inhabiting a queer, third, liminal space—a space that resists restrictive categorizations.
These are women who transgress the boundary between the private and the public, between the female space and the male dominated one. Perhaps a way to reinterpret the Gynecological Society’s negative othering is to suggest that these 19th-century American women physicians represent a queer, transgressive, and liminal space between the physical and ideological female-inhabited domestic space and the male-dominated professional space.
How, then, do texts with medical women grapple with transgressed categories on both the formal and the thematic level? How does 19th-century American literature register the “third” space women in the sciences inhabit? What do we learn from reading literature with medical women as characters or authors?
To address this issue of formal and thematic transgression, authors might pursue issues such as the following, though they should not feel limited by them:
•  How novels with women physicians or scientists transgress generic or formal boundaries
•  Approaches that queer medical women in literature; analyses of queering and medical women
•  Interdisciplinary approaches to 19th-century characterizations of women and medicine
•  How literature with medical women works to disrupt social and literary forms
•  19th-century works that explore the intersections between gender, sex, and medicine
•  Genre analyses of novels of sentimentalism, realism, or regionalism with medical or scientific women characters
•  Spatial or visual representations of 19th-century medical women or women in science
•  Pedagogical approaches to teaching 19th-century texts with medical women
Topics other than those listed above are enthusiastically encouraged, and articles on a broad range of issues and topics that fall within the broad project of women in medicine or science and literature will be considered.
Please send 500 word abstracts and a brief bio to Margaret Jay Jessee by December 15. Completed essays will be due in March 2018 for review.

CFP: Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society at ALA, (Deadline 1.15.2018)

Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society

Call for Papers

American Literature Association Conference

San Francisco, CA May 24-27, 2018

SESSION 1: Roundtable: Sedgwick and American Enchantment

The Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society calls for 5-7 scholars to participate in a roundtable discussion of Michelle Sizemore’s recently published American Enchantment: Rituals of the People in the Post-Revolutionary World (Oxford UP, November 2017). Participants do not need to focus on the discussions of Sedgwick in the final chapter but instead can address Sizemore’s treatment of any of the central authors (such as Hawthorne, Irving, Brackenridge, and Brown); the significance of this scholarship on Sedgwick Studies; and/or key issues in Sizemore’s work, such as thinking of “the people” as a process rather than as a substance or understanding “enchantment” as a contingent state of embodied cognition.

A description of the book is as follows: The demise of the monarchy and the bodily absence of a King caused a representational crisis in the early republic, forcing the American people to reconstruct the social symbolic order in a new and unfamiliar way. Social historians have routinely understood the Revolution and the early republic as projects dedicated to and productive of reason, with “the people” as an orderly and sensible collective at odds with the volatile and unthinking crowd. American Enchantment rejects this traditionally held vision of a rational public sphere, arguing that early Americans dealt with the post-monarchical crisis by engaging in “civil mysticism,” not systematic discussion and debate. By evaluating a wide range of social and political rituals and literary and cultural discourses, Sizemore shows how “enchantment” becomes a vital mode of enacting the people after the demise of traditional monarchical forms. In works by Charles Brockden Brown, Washington Irving, Catharine Sedgwick, and Nathaniel Hawthorne–as well as in Delaware oral histories, accounts of George Washington’s inauguration, and Methodist conversion narratives–enchantment is an experience uniquely capable of producing new forms of popular power and social affiliation. Recognizing the role of enchantment in constituting the people overturns some of the most common-sense assumptions in the post-revolutionary world: above all, that the people are not simply a flesh-and-blood substance, but also a mystical force.

Please send a brief abstract (200 words) outlining your intended focus in the roundtable to Lisa West,, by January 15, 2018.



Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society

Call for Papers

American Literature Association Conference

San Francisco, CA May 24-27, 2018

SESSION 2: Panel: Sedgwick (and others) Beyond Unitarianism

The Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society seeks papers that invite discussion of religion in Sedgwick’s life and writing. In particular, the society hopes to complicate an understanding of Sedgwick’s Unitarian beliefs; call attention to her use of a variety of religious affiliations and doctrines; consider the role of secularism in her work; and investigate connections between religion, education, morality, and fiction. Papers that address contemporaries of Sedgwick, particularly other women writers or religious theorists, will also be considered. Please send an abstract of 250 words to Lisa West,, by January 15, 2018.

Short-Term Library Grant Announcement, Dillard Russell Library’s Special Collections (Deadline: 4.2.2018)

CFP: Short-term Library Research Grants

Georgia College in Milledgeville, Georgia, offers short-term Library Research Grants every year to scholars and students whose work would benefit from access to materials in Ina Dillard Russell Library’s Special Collections. Strengths of the collections include Milledgeville/Baldwin County history and culture, (local/regional) women’s history, and Georgia College history. Special Collections houses the papers of authors Flannery O’Connor and Alice Walker and several political figures, including U.S. Secretary of Labor W. J. Usery, U. S. Senator Paul Coverdell, U. S. Representative Carl Vinson, and Georgia State Senator Floyd L. Griffin, Jr. For more information about Special Collections or the grant, please visit our website.

Deadline: April 2, 2018

CFP: Witches and “Nasty Women”: Unruly Tongues in American Literature at ALA (Deadline 12.30.2017)

CALL FOR PAPERS: FOR A PANEL at the American Literature Association,

San Francisco, CA, May 24-27, 2018

Witches and “Nasty Women”: Unruly Tongues in American Literature

This panel seeks papers which explore the concept of the “nasty woman” and/or the “witch” as a proto-feminist in American literature. As Martha Cutter has argued, “an unruly tongue” becomes symbolic of an “unruly identity that challenges a woman’s place within […] stereotypes of femininity and structures of patriarchal authority.” Nowhere does this seem more obvious than in the current socio-political environment. And yet, for centuries in the United States, women have been punished, vilified, or marginalized for being outspoken. How do these types of women—from witches in the 17th century to last year’s “nasty woman” type—appear in our national literature? How do authors from the period of colonization to the present day illustrate “unruly women”—women who in Cutter’s words, might be said to evolve their own discourse to counteract the patriarchy?

Please send 250 word abstracts along with a short CV (1-2 pages) to Elif Armbruster at, by December 30, 2017.  Please be sure to note ALA paper proposal in your subject line. Please feel free to circulate!

Job Posting: TT Assistant Professor specializing in Black Studies (Texas A&M University-San Antonio)

Please see the job listing below for a tenure-track position in Black Studies (open to all periods). We would appreciate your help in spreading the word. The full posting can be found at:

Assistant Professor of English

The College of Arts and Sciences at Texas A&M University-San Antonio invites applications for a tenure-track, Assistant Professor of English position specializing in Black Studies, including but not limited to African American literatures, Africana Studies, Anglophone Caribbean literature, or Afro-Mestizaje. We welcome applications from candidates specializing in any period who can help develop our offerings in Black Studies. Preferred secondary specialties include critical race theory, gender and sexuality studies, performance studies, or cultural rhetorics. The ability to contribute to the University’s new minor in Mexican American, Latinx and Borderland Studies is desirable. This position will begin Fall 2018 and will have a 3/3 teaching load. The College seeks excellence in instruction, scholarship, and service.

Texas A&M University-San Antonio (TAMU-SA) is a new comprehensive university in the established Texas A&M University System serving students from a culturally diverse and largely non-traditional population. The university was created to address the educational needs in South San Antonio and surrounding areas. The current enrollment is approximately 6,500.

Application Process: Applications are accepted only through the online job portal at: Applicants must complete online (1) the application/Faculty Form, and upload (2) the letter of interest, (3) curriculum vita, and (4) unofficial copies of transcripts. In the letter of interest mention, in the very first sentence, the specialization for which you would like to be considered.

The priority date for applications is December 15, 2017. The position is open until filled.

Please direct any questions to