UBC is honoured to be hosting the Pacific Northwest chapter of the Society for the Study of American Women Writers’ Fall 2017 meeting on Saturday October 21 (2017).
This workshop, organized by Dr. Mary Chapman (Department of English, University of British Columbia) will be attended by graduate students and professors from UBC and other universities in the Pacific Northwest.
The SSAWW, one of the oldest feminist literary scholarly associations in North America, has been hosting semi-annual workshops/reading group meetings since the 1980s. Since its founding, regional chapters (Northeast, Southwest, Pacific Northwest) have been established that also meet twice yearly to discuss new scholarship and newly recovered literary works by American women writers. This will be the first time that any of these groups will meet in Canada.
This meeting will be devoted to a discussion of the work of Ella Rhoads Higginson (1862-1940), guided by invited scholar Dr. Laura Laffrado (Western Washington University).
The first prominent literary author from the Pacific Northwest, Higginson has been largely forgotten as a key American writer. At the turn from the nineteenth century into the twentieth century, readers across the continent were introduced to the remote Pacific Northwest region (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, British Columbia, and Alaska) by Higginson’s descriptions of majestic mountains, vast forests, and scenic waters, as well as her explorations of indigenous cultures and culture of the Pacific Northwest. Higginson was celebrated for her award-winning popular fiction, nonfiction, and lyric poetry, which was set to music and performed internationally. She held the distinguished position as the first Poet Laureate of Washington State. Throughout her literary career, Higginson published nearly one thousand works in leading magazines and newspapers, while also writing books, including the novel Mariella, of Out-West(1902) and the nonfiction work Alaska, the Great Country (1908). Higginson’s reputation faded chiefly due to her singular position as a turn-of-the-century writer of the Pacific Northwest, far from other regions and writers at the time.
Thank you to the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and UBC’s Faculty of Arts for their support of this workshop.
The Spring 2016 SSAWW Newsletter is available here:
Please welcome our new officers as of July 31, 2016:
- President: DoVeanna S. Fulton, University of Houston-Downtown, firstname.lastname@example.org (single term) (term ends 2018).
- Vice President of Organizational Matters: Sabrina Starnaman, University of Texas at Dallas
- Leslie Allison, Temple University email@example.com (single term; 2017) (supporting Conference Director)
- Rickie-Ann Legleitner, Black Hills State University firstname.lastname@example.org (single term; 2017) (supporting Associate Conference Director)
- Vice President of Membership and Finances: Magda Garcia, University of California, Santa Barbara
- Vice President of Development: Christopher Varlack, University of Maryland, Baltimore County
- Vice President of Publications—Leslie Allison, Temple University email@example.com
- Jordan L. Von Cannon, Louisiana State University firstname.lastname@example.org (single term; 2017) (supporting VP for Publications)
New Books: Selected Poems of Edna St. Vincent Millay: An Annotated Edition. Edited by Timothy F. Jackson, with an Introduction by Holly Peppe
Yale University Press, 2016.
In this authoritative volume, Timothy F. Jackson has compiled and annotated a new selection that represents the full range of her published work alongside previously unpublished manuscript excerpts, poems, prose, and correspondence. The poems, appearing as they were printed in their first editions, are complemented by Jackson’s extensive, illuminating notes, which draw on archival sources and help situate her work in its historical and literary context. Two introductory essays—one by Jackson and the other by Millay’s literary executor, Holly Peppe—also help critically frame the poet’s work.
New Books: Native Women and Land: Narratives of Dispossession and Resurgence by Stephanie J. Fitzgerald
Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2015
Winner of the 2015 Woodcraft Circle Honor and Award for Best Academic Book and just recently, the Beatrice Medicine Award for Scholarship in American Indian Studies (awarded by the Native American Literature Symposium).
Introduction by Maribel Morales
Hastings College Press, 2016
Set in a small college town in California, Mary Austin’s 1908 novel Santa Lucia explores the limited options available to women in early 20th century America. Focusing on the married lives of three young women—William Caldwell, Serena Lindley, and Julia Stairs—the novel is a feminist look at marriage. Like Kate Chopin’s 1899 novel The Awakening, Santa Lucia was almost resoundingly rejected by critics in its own day for the seemingly immoral suggestion that women could find happiness and fulfillment outside their own marriages.
The Hastings College Press website is: http://www.hastings.edu/hastings-college-press
New Books: Dividing the Reservation: Alice C. Fletcher’s Nez Perce Allotment Diaries and Letters, 1889 – 1892 by Nicole Tonkovich
Washington State University Press, 2016
Alice Cunningham Fletcher was both formidable and remarkable. A pioneering ethnologist who penetrated occupations dominated by men, she was the first woman to hold an endowed chair at Harvard’s Peabody Museum of American Archaeology and Ethnology–during a time the institution did not admit female students. She helped write the Dawes General Allotment Act of 1887 that reshaped American Indian policy, and became one of the first women to serve as a federal Indian agent, working with the Omahas, the Winnebagos, and finally the Nez Perces. A commanding presence, Fletcher worked from a specialized tent that served as home and office, traveling with copies of laws, rolls of maps, and blank plats. She spent four summers on the project, completing close to 2,000 allotments.
This book is a collection of letters and diaries Fletcher wrote during this work. Her writing illuminates her relations with the key players in the allotment, as well as her internal conflicts over dividing the reservation. Taken together, these documents offer insight into how federal policy was applied, resisted, and amended in this early application of the Dawes General Allotment Act.