CFP: Legacy, Special Issue: “American Women’s Writing and the Genealogies of Queer Thought” (Deadline: 07.31.2018)

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers

Special Issue: “American Women’s Writing and the Genealogies of Queer Thought”

Guest Editors: Travis M. Foster and Timothy M. Griffiths

This special issue of Legacy aims to address a key contradiction in the development of contemporary queer theory: on the one hand, queer intellectual history has clear though too frequently elided roots in feminism and women’s writing; and, on the other hand, many of queer theory’s most defining arguments draw inductively from astonishingly narrow archives that occlude women’s embodiment, history, desires, and experiences. We seek papers that engage this contradiction by bringing queer theoretical thought into dialogue with American women’s writing from the seventeenth century through the early-twentieth century. How does our understanding of queer theory and its history change when examined through a longer and more diverse archive than it is typically afforded? How does our understanding of women’s writing and its history change when examined as a conceptual participant in the genealogy of queer thought?

By addressing these questions, papers collected in this issue might aspire to suggest fields germane to queer theoretical study that otherwise go overlooked; clarify the overlaps and disconnects between the histories of feminist and queer literary studies; decenter gay-white-male iconicity in the study of queer-American culture; and/or expand notions of queer dissent emerging from archives that too often valorize masculinist, anti-relational alienation from “effeminizing,” “bourgeois” sociality. We list these conceptual ambitions as possibilities rather than prescriptions. On a more fundamental and open level, this issue acts as an occasion to circulate scholarship that generates new thinking on queerness and gender by highlighting a wide range of American women’s writing.

  • Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
  • Sexual transgression and its theoretics in women’s writing
  • The relationship between queer thought and the sentimental and domestic traditions
  • Early African American writing, black queer studies, and women-of-color feminism
  • Ecofeminism, environmentalism, and queer ecology
  • Sex and gender in Native American writing
  • The linkages between sexual identity, gender performance, and theories of sovereignty
  • Anti-imperialism and nationalism as they relate to sex and gender in women’s writing
  • Women and queerness beyond lesbian recovery paradigms
  • Heterosexuality as an ideology in women’s writing
  • The queer ethics of caretaking and sympathy
  • Women-authored poetry and its erotic imagination
  • Forms of dissent, subversion, and sexual identity in women’s writing
  • American religion, religious ecstasy, and sexual identity
  • Gender and sexuality in the study of whiteness
  • Women’s writing and critiques of antinormativity
  • Queerness and anti-queerness in abolitionist literature
  • Women and queerness beyond “romantic friendship” paradigms

Submissions of 8000–10,000 words (including endnotes and works cited) in MLA format are due by July 31, 2018. Accepted submissions will appear in Legacy 37.1 (Summer 2020). Please send electronic submissions and any inquiries to the guest editors: Timothy M. Griffiths ( and Travis M. Foster (


CFP: Legacy at the SSAWW conference in Bordeaux (Deadline: 6.25.16)

CFP: SSAWW conference in Bordeaux, France

Deadline: June 25th, 2016

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers solicits proposals for a guaranteed panel at the SSAWW conference in Bordeaux, France, July 5-8, 2017. Extending the conference CFP, with its keywords such as “transnationalism,” “translation,” and “transatlantic,” we add the term “transgender.” Concepts of movement and transition are central to transgender studies: what might this field add to discussions of “Border Crossings”?  How might we think about trans/genderqueer/gender nonconforming authors, characters, and texts as crossing and re-crossing geographic and symbolic borders?  And how might the borders that prevail in the study of “American women writers” be altered by a consideration of texts by and about transgender women and/or individuals who identify outside of the gender binary?

This Legacy-sponsored panel particularly welcomes papers that explore such questions in work prior to 1940 but will consider submissions on writers from any time period. We solicit papers on a range of genres under the umbrella of cultural production, including the visual arts.

Send your 250-word abstract to Jennifer Putzi at by June 25, 2016.

Legacy News: Summar C. Sparks joins as Editorial Assistant

Legacy is happy to announce that Summar C. Sparks has joined us as our new Editorial Assistant. As we speak, Ms. Sparks is preparing to defend her dissertation, “Bound by Paper: Nineteenth-Century Southern Editors and Their Northern Connections,” at the University of North Carolina Greensboro. She brings experience working as an Assistant Editor at College English, and we are very happy to have her.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Amber LaPiana for her superb contributions as Legacy Editorial Assistant over the past two years. As her term draws to a close, she departs the journal in order to become Senior Editor for the education website We thank her for her excellent service and her brilliant editorial eye, and we wish her well as she begins her career.

Jennifer S. Tuttle

Editor, Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers,

Legacy announces Jean Marie Lutes as new Book Review Editor

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers is happy to announce that Jean Marie Lutes of Villanova University will join us in January 2015 as our new Book Review Editor, at the time that our current Book Review Editor Sari Edelstein’s term expires.  Sari will continue in the post until December of this year, so please continue to contact her for any book review-related items:

Sari Edelstein Department of English University of Massachusetts Botson 100 Morrissey Blvd Boston, MA 02125

In preparation for the transition, Jean will begin shadowing Sari as we work on the next issue this fall.

We are extraordinarily fortunate to have two such superb editors serving the journal!

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers: 30th Anniversary Issue

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers observes its 30th anniversary with the publication of issue 31.1 (Spring 2014)


“Finding Place to Speak: Sarah Winnemucca’s Rhetorical Practices in Disciplinary Spaces” by Rosalyn Collings Eves

Approaches to Recovering Early Women

Conference presentations from recent Legacy-sponsored panels

  • “States of Recollection: How Seventeenth-Century Women Thought about Recovery and the Atlantic World” by Tamara Harvey
  • “Looking for Stories of Inarticulate Women” by Ava Chamberlain
  • “Interpretative Challenges Posed by the Gendered Performances of Early American Female Criminals” by Amelia C. Lewis
  • “Phillis Wheatley on Friendship” by Tara Bynum
  • “‘Memorials of Exemplary Women Are Peculiarly Interesting’: Female Biography in Early National America” by Lucia McMahon

A Riff, A Call, and A Response: A Forum

Edited by P. Gabrielle Foreman

  • “Better a Bloody Shovel than Ambivalence” by Joycelyn Moody
  • “Do You Have Any Skin in the Game?” by Kimberly Blockett
  • “Out of the Kitchen of the House of Fiction” by M. Giulia Fabi
  • “Twenty-First-Century African American Literary Studies as Movementby Herman Beavers
  • “Race and the Mind/Body Problem” by Katherine Clay Bassard
  • “Whiteness Visible” by John Ernest

Legacy Profile

Mary Dwinell Chellis Lund (1826-1891) by Larisa Asaeli

Excerpt from “Drinking Jack” (1881) by Mary Dwinell Chellis

Legacy Reprint

Introduction: “Investing in Literature: Ernestine Rose and the Harlem Branch Public Library of the 1920s” by Barbara Hochman

“Serving New York’s Black City” by Ernestine Rose

Book Reviews

  • “Critical Legacies”: A special anniversary forum in celebration of Nina Baym’s Woman’s Fiction: A Guide to Novels by and about Women in America, 1820-1870, Frances Smith Foster’s Written By Herself: Literary Production by African American Women, 1746-1892, and Shirley Samuels’ The Culture of Sentiment: Race, Gender, and Sentimentality in 19th-Century America.

Contributors: Marianne Noble, Elizabeth Stockton, Duncan Faherty, John Ernest,  Xiomara Santamarina, Elizabeth Cali, Glenn Hendler, María Carla Sánchez, Jennifer Travis

  • Review Essay “Childish Things”: A Review of Robin Bernstein, Racial Innocence: Performing American Childhood from Slavery to Civil Rights; Kyla Wazana Tompkins, Racial Indigestion: Eating Bodies in the 19th Century; and Courtney Weikle-Mills, Imaginary Citizens: Child Readers and the Limits of American Independence 1640-1868
    Anna Mae Duane, University of Connecticut
  • Reviews

Philosophies of Sex:  Critical Essays on The Hermaphrodite edited by Renée Bergland and Gary Williams

Heather Barrett, Boston University

E. D. E. N. Southworth: Recovering a Nineteenth-Century Popular Novelist by Melissa Homestead and Pamela Washington

Carl Ostrowski, Middle Tennessee State University

To Fight Aloud Is Very Brave: American Poetry and the Civil War by Faith Barrett

Christa Vogelius, University of Michigan

The Selected Letters of Elizabeth Stoddard edited by Jennifer Putzi and Elizabeth Stockton

Nicole Livengood, Marietta College

Domestic Subjects: Gender, Citizenship, and Law in Native American Literature by Beth Piatote

Cari Carpenter, West Virginia University

CFP: LEGACY special issue: “Recovering Alice Dunbar-Nelson for the 21st Century” (journal issue; Deadline 9.30.14)

Special issue, “Recovering Alice Dunbar-Nelson for the 21st Century”

Guest Editors: Sandra Zagarell, Katherine Adams, Caroline Gebhard

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers solicits papers for a special issue devoted to writing by Alice Dunbar-Nelson. Best known today as the author of regionalist short fiction set in her native New Orleans, Dunbar-Nelson was also an essayist, poet, playwright, newspaper columnist and editor, diarist, anthologist, educator, and activist engaged in the suffrage movement and African American political and social advancement.

Neither Dunbar-Nelson’s oeuvre nor her life fits comfortably into the ways of thinking that have traditionally shaped Americanist, African Americanist, and feminist criticism. For example, while some of her short stories openly engage racial inequity, much of the New Orleans fiction seems to hew to an aesthetic that prizes polish over politics. It takes considerable knowledge of the city’s racialized cultural geography and history to recognize how artfully Dunbar-Nelson’s fiction unsettles presumptions about racial and sexual distinctions, religion, ethnicity, nation, class, and gender. Dunbar-Nelson’s own practices of identification were enormously complicated. She was a prominent black activist and public intellectual; she felt that as a light-skinned African American she suffered from reverse colorism; she was herself sometimes derisive about dark-skinned blacks. Her sexuality was fluid: she had sexual-romantic relationships with women as well as men, and her most enduring relationships were with her third husband, Robert J. Nelson, and a woman educator, Edwina B. Kruse.  Continue reading

Legacy: Legacy’s latest issue, 30.2 (Fall 2013)

From Susan Tomlinson on SSAWW-L and

Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers announces the publication of our latest issue, 30.2 (Fall 2013)


  • A special subsection on Cross-Racial Collaborations and Challenges in Feminist Literary Studies
  • A newly recovered story by Kate Chopin, “Her First Party” (1905)


Touching Liberty, Transforming Academe: Cross-Racial Collaborations and Challenges in Feminist Literary Studies

Tributes to Frances Smith Foster
Recipient of the SSAWW’s Karen Dandurand Lifetime Achievement Medal, 2012

Joycelyn Moody, Elizabeth Cali, Rachel Johnston, Sarah Ruffing Robbins, Elizabeth Engelhardt, Shannon Cardinal, and Jennifer S. Tuttle

“White Suffragist Dis/Entitlement: The Revolution and the Rhetoric of Racism”
Jen McDaneld

“Jessie Fauset’s Plum Bun and the City’s Transformative Potential”
Catherine Rottenberg

“Collaboration in the Archive: Finding, Shaping, and Disseminating Stories from a Missionary Writer’s Network”
Sarah Ruffing Robbins and Ann Ellis Pullen

“A Riff, A Call, and A Response: Reframing the Problem that Led to Our Being Tokens in Ethnic and Gender Studies; or, Where Are We Going Anyway and With Whom Will We Travel?”
P. Gabrielle Foreman

“The Politics of the Body: Gender, Race, and Coalition after Twenty Years”
Karen Sánchez-Eppler

Continue reading