The Irish Journal of American Studies (IJAS Online) is seeking to fill two positions:

  • Co-Editor-in-Chief
  • Marketing & Reviews Editor

The Irish Journal of American Studies is an internationally respected, peer-reviewed, open access journal. It is the official journal of the Irish Association for American Studies (the all-Ireland scholarly association for the study of the United States and the Americas), and has published since 1992. It currently publishes issues annually at http://ijas.iaas.ie/ featuring articles, reviews and interviews on topics including history, literature, film, art, music, media, and politics. The previous Editor-in-Chief David Coughlan is stepping down, with the previous Marketing & Reviews Editor Tim Groenland moving to the position of Editor-in-Chief.

The journal is seeking a candidate to share the Editorship as well as a new Marketing & Reviews Editor. Both posts will run for three years, with the possibility of renewal. The roles are briefly outlined below, and we hope to fill both by September 2021; we anticipate a handover period, provisionally scheduled for the final weeks of August. Excellent editorial, organisational and communication skills are essential for both posts. An interest in academic publishing and research expertise in American Studies are also essential.

No salary is available for either role, as the journal is entirely volunteer-run. The nature of scholarly publishing means that the work will not be distributed evenly throughout the year, but we estimate that the Co-Editor-in Chief role will require a commitment of 2 hours per week, with the Marketing & Reviews Editor requiring 1 hour per week. The role also comes with a non-executive position on the IAAS committee, and the Editor-in-Chief is thus expected to attend the four committee meetings each year; attendance can be alternated between the Co-Editors.

The IJAS is committed to equity and inclusion, and we encourage expressions of interest from under-represented groups. Both roles will require regular consultation and coordination with the wider editorial team, but possibilities for role-sharing may be considered in the case of the Marketing & Reviews Editor position so as to accommodate varying responsibilities and workloads.

To apply, please send the following to irishjournalofamericanstudies@gmail.com by midnight on August 12th, 2021:

  • One-page cover letter outlining your interest in the role, skills, and experience
  • CV

Please direct any informal enquiries to the same address.

Outline of Roles:

Co-Editor-in-Chief

  • Working with Co-Editor-in-Chief Dr Tim Groenland to bring articles to publication;
    • identifying peer reviewers (with the assistance of the Editorial Board), liaising with reviewers, synthesising reviewer reports
    • Communicating with authors, working with authors on copy-edits, managing submission and revision deadlines
    • Publishing to the IJAS Online platform; formatting according to journal guidelines, sourcing suitable images, adapting content to WordPress requirements as needed
  • Maintaining and improving access to the journal;
    • Managing the journal’s website http://ijas.iaas.ie/ (e.g. updating menus and lists of Books for Review)
    • Preparing content for (and communicating with) JSTOR, formatting articles for print
  • Planning future issues and strategy in collaboration with Dr Groenland and the IJAS Editorial Board (a diverse supporting network of Americanist scholars in Ireland and beyond)
  • Mentoring early-career writing

Marketing & Reviews Editor 

  • Commissioning reviews, liaising with reviewers and publishers of books available for review, managing deadlines and review schedules
  • Preparing reviews for publication;
    • Editing, communicating with authors on approval for changes
    • Copy-editing and formatting reviews, liaising with the Co-Editors-in-Chief on publication
  • Marketing:
    • Liaising with IAAS Secretary to promote new articles & reviews in newsletter, and with American Studies conference organisers as well as local departments where appropriate to advertise the journal
    • Managing the journal’s social media account(s) (Twitter, at present)

 

 

Popularizing STEM | Science and Technology in 21st-Century US Popular Culture 15-19 November 2021 (hybrid format conference)

Confirmed keynotes: Gerry Canavan, Charles Adler, Stina Attebery, André Brock, Emily Cox- Palmer-White, J. Jesse Ramírez.
Follow further updates on Twitter or the official conference website!

In 1959, British physicist and novelist C.P. Snow delivered a lecture in which he highlighted the increasing intellectual separation between the humanities and the sciences—the emergence of “two cultures.” While his arguments were clearly anchored in British society, he nevertheless suggested that this emerging chasm was “a problem of the entire West.” To present the argument in a perhaps even more exaggerated manner than Snow did: Not even the most highly educated humanities scholars can comprehend basic physics, while what we today would refer to as STEM professors don’t read “highbrow” literature. Snow came to understand that the situation was not quite as black-and-white as he suggested, which is why he anticipated the emergence of a “third culture” a few years later.

Of course, much has happened in the sixty-plus years since Snow’s iconic lecture. And, indeed, scholars such as Rachel Holland have diagnosed the emergence of a “third culture” and, along with it, third-culture cultural objects. In her recent book Contemporary Fiction and Science (2019), Holland argues that the increasing presence of science in fiction (and, by extension, popular culture) “is, in part, a response to the upsurge in interest […] in popular science.” Holland identifies a “new strand of fiction” that engages with “elements of popular science in a number of ways. These include: researching and relaying information gleaned from scientific publications; challenging or promoting ideas presented by science writers; exploring the moral and ethical implications of these ideas; and testing the limits and capabilities of the novel in relation to scientific discourse.” As some of the elements in this list suggest, science is a tool of power; science is purported to be objective and, hence, often serves as a purveyor of Truth. As such, it has been (ab)used in a variety of ways in the course of history–among others, scientific curiosity drove (and technology made possible) the exploration and colonization of foreign lands, science explained the inferiority of non-white peoples, iconic Nazi doctor Josef Mengele experimented on humans in the name of scientific progress, etc.

Holland’s elaborations also indicate that science and technology have taken an integral place in global society—and the ongoing pandemic has brought this process to the fore. Due to the proliferation of science and technology on television, in films, video games, and other popular media and the attendant use of YouTube and other platforms by STEM fields, it is important to study the dynamic and complex interrelationship between science & technology and popular culture. Indeed, science & technology has infiltrated popular culture. However, this is not a one-way street! “The cultural products that scientific discoveries and developments sparked have become significant parts of the discourse surrounding science,” as Steven Gil rightfully stresses in the opening editorial of the Journal of Science & Popular Culture.

We are particularly interested in presentations that seek to engage with questions of intersectional discrimination in STEM representations in popular culture, spanning from cultural products aimed at dissemination and debate on STEM to texts such as films, TV series, comics and graphic novels, genre fiction, video games, new media narratives.

Suggested fields of analysis might include but are not limited to:

  • STEM dissemination in popular culture: storytelling strategies, (in)accuracy, multimedia programs and projects promoting access, flexibility, and adaptability in STEM education and knowledge, deconstructing the existing barriers within the field and building equality in legitimacy
  • Interrelationship between STEM and Popular Culture: Using popular culture to teach/educate on STEM (i.e., in STEM programs) and teaching about STEM via popular culture
  • Economic discourses and the challenges of capitalism related to STEM in US popular culture and media
  • Representation of STEM in popular culture aimed at children and young adults
  • Intersectionality versus marginalization in the dissemination and communicationof science and technology
  • STEM and Gender Studies :  the portrayal of masculine, feminine, and gender non-conforming individuals in STEM-centered popular media narratives
  • Science, tech, and race/ethnicity: Afro(Latinx), Indigenous, and Chicana Futurism(s), minority perspectives, alternative narratives, borderland spaces
  • Digital technology and virtual realities as safe spaces for marginalized groups
  • The use of science and technology in depictions of the future as critiques or reevaluations of current realities: tech-noir and sci-fi utopias, dystopias, post/apocalyptic scenarios, and retrofuturism 
  • Cyborgs, AI, and the human: representations, conflicts, and horrific developments
  •  Health and technology: care robots and the representation of disabilities, human aging, biomedical issues
  • Representations of surveillance, biometrics, and biological citizenship
  • Tech, science, and the (non)human body: narratives related to experimentation,bioethics, artificial monstrosity, transhumanism, biopunk
  • Pop depictions of STEM: (in)accuracy, “prediction” of future technologies, breaking down the science and tech behind superhero narrativesDeadline for submission: August 31, 2021.Submit your abstract proposal (~ 300 words) at popmec.stem@gmail.com as an attachment, including name, affiliation if any, and contact email. Depending on the proposals and participants’ response, an editorial project might originate from the conference.

The conference will take place on the days 15-19 November 2021 in mixed format:

  • ONLINE | panels and main keynotes
  • IN PRESENCE at Universidad de Alcalá, historical campus, Friday 19 November |2 keynotes + workshop/seminars. If it will be feasible considering the changing COVID-19 related measures, we will allow selected panels to be carried out in person (if their participants wish to do so)Participation fees:
  • FREE for PopMeC members (membership yearly fees: 12€ students / non-tenured / unwaged / retired, 20€ regular)
  • Non-members: 15€                                                                 

 

The conference is organized by the PopMeC Association for US Popular Culture Studies, in collaboration with the Instituto Franklin-UAH located in Alcalá de Henares (Madrid, ES) and the academic research project Fiction Meets Science.Organizing committee: Michael Fuchs and Anna Marta Marini (coordinators), Laura Álvarez Trigo, Paula Barba Guerrero, Paul Mitchell, Dina Pedro, Erika Tiburcio.
On-site organization: Francisco Sáez de Adana, Ana Serra, Carlos Herrero (Instituto Franklin- UAH).

Call for general submissions:  The Society of Americanist Review

Following the publication of our second annual volume, the editors of SOAR are pleased to announce that we will begin to move to a twice-annual publication schedule! In support of this goal, we invite the submission of general interdisciplinary scholarship relating to the culture of the United States. The journal publishes work in a variety of formats, including research articles; forum, discussion, memorial, and state-of-the-field essays; dialogues and interviews; reports on programs, organizations, and pedagogy; as well as book, exhibit, and media reviews. Submissions undergo a rigorous multi-tiered peer review process that includes the journal’s editorial staff, advisory board members, and external reviewers. 

For more information about how to submit to SOAR, see our submission guidelines. Submissions can be made directly through our website.

Deadline for submissions: September 01, 2021. 

 

Find out more about our mission and editorial board here. Check out our second volume “The Resistance” here.

 

For general inquiries, please contact the editors at: americanist@psu.edu

 

 

 

Wastelands

34TH EUROPEAN ASSOCIATION FOR AMERICAN STUDIES CONFERENCE

Madrid 6-8 April 2022

Organized by the UNED (Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia)

with the collaboration of the Universidad Complutense.

 

The year 2022 marks the centenary of the publication of T.S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land. The title of the conference alludes to Eliot’s work and the main themes in it, expanding the idea of the wasteland to the study of the United States. Hence, the overarching theme of the conference is open to all kinds of reflections around the concept of “wasteland” and waste. EAAS 2022 invites proposals that address the concept of waste in U.S. culture, history, and politics.

 

Proposals may address (but are not restricted to) the following topics:

WASTELANDS IN THE ANTHROPOCENE

  • Environmental waste (water, land, e-waste, etc.).
  • Anti-Waste: degrowth philosophy.
  • “Zero waste” movement and consumerism.
  • Food waste.
  • Wastelands as devastation of spaces.
  • Waste of resources (human, natural, economic, etc.).

 

THE ETHICS OF WASTE

  • Moral waste: deterioration of democracies and other values. Empty discourses (political, cultural, etc.).
  • Wasted opportunities (land of opportunities, American dream).
  • Waste as a “negative store”, as opposed to the archive; forgetting, destruction, and latent cultural memory.
  • Waste of information: useless and redundant data, technology, media, etc.

 

CORPOREAL WASTE

  • Illnesses and pathologies.
  • Age: The Growing Land.
  • Emotional wastelands: real or metaphorical
  • Pandemics and other physical threats.

 

LITERARY AND CULTURAL REPRESENTATIONS OF WASTELANDS

 

  • ‘Wasteland” as an image of decadence, crisis, and postwar.
  • Barrenness vs. fertility, hopelessness vs. regeneration.
  • S. Eliot’s The Waste Land and its literary / cultural influence.
  • Literary representations of wastelands.
  • (Audio)visual representations of wastelands.
  • Ruins, trash, in painting, music, film, and other artistic representations.

 

SUGGESTED FORMATS:

EAAS 2022 accepts abstracts and proposals including individual papers, complete panels, workshops or talkshops.

Paper proposals should be 300 words maximum. Individual papers should be 15 minute presentations.

Panel proposals should include a description of the panel as a whole and the abstracts of three individual papers.  Full panels have 1 h. 30 minutes.

Workshops or Roundtables of 4-5 participants with shorter statements and discussion on a given research topic or common theme. Presentations for workshops will be uploaded one month in advance of the conference to encourage intellectual exchange.

Workshop and Talkshop proposals should include a title and a brief description of the theme. Workshops and talkshops have 1 h. for questions or debate.

We strongly encourage and will give preference to panels that reflect the diversity of our field in terms of gender, ethnicity, and institutional affiliation. We encourage the participation of scholars from different institutions and countries.

Presentations are restricted to one paper per participant at the conference.

 

SUBMISSIONS:

Submissions are made through the webpage of the conference: https://eaas2022.com/

 

DEADLINE for submissions: September 30

Notification: October 31

Contact: conference@eaas2022.com

 

This edited collection seeks to explore the representation of the First Lady in a range of different texts and media. The collection aims to examine the President’s wife in a purely cultural context by investigating the ways in which she has been represented, embodied, characterised and commemorated in film, fiction, memoir, photography and portraiture, television, theatre, education, museum studies, fashion, and social media.

Beyond the White House is an original work that makes use of cultural interpretation to reconfigure the figure of the First Lady as a culturally authoritative individual possessing the ability to sway, change, inspire, and manipulate public attention and opinion. Moving away from biographies and histories, this is the first volume of its kind to consider the representation of the First Lady figure through the prism of popular culture – and therefore consider her impact upon ‘cultural politics’ – and the first to regard her as a strategically important socio-cultural figure.

Removed from the patriarchal hierarchy of White House politics and expectations, the First Lady emerges as a force of her own; she subtly carves out cultural agency and gender identity despite her (in)visibility in the public eye. Simply by being the ‘First Lady of the United States’ she possesses what MaryAnne Borrelli has labelled the “performance of descriptive representation” (Women and the White House: 229). The relationship between the woman and the office is paramount; the existence of the title ‘First Lady’ permits popular culture to tolerate or reject not only political and cultural manoeuvring, but also issues of gender, race, self, location, fashion, identity, satire, memory, authority, and even pedagogy. The office of the First Lady is what the woman makes it, and in Beyond the White House she has become a commanding cultural icon.

 

Possible topics might include (but are not limited to):

 

  • The First Lady in film and on television (both fictional First Ladies and representations of real First Ladies, such as in the new First Ladies series from Showtime)
  • First Ladies in fiction (this might be retellings of the stories of real First Ladies, or new fictional First Ladies)
  • First Ladies and self-representation, life-writing and memoir (i.e. Becoming by Michelle Obama, Hard Choices by Hilary Clinton)
  • First Ladies in education; how the role of FLOTUS is represented and taught in classrooms
  • The First Lady on display; exhibitions, curatorship and portraiture of FLOTUS
  • Photography and portraiture of the First Ladies (in magazines, photoshoots and journalism as well as official portraiture)
  • First Ladies on stage and in theatre
  • Fashion and the First Ladies (from inaugural gowns to Melania’s ‘I really don’t care’ jacket)
  • Self-representation and social media; FLOTUS on Twitter and Instagram.

 

 

Please send 300-500 word abstracts, a short bio to Dr Anne-Marie Evans (a.evans@yorksj.ac.uk) and Dr Sarah Trott (s.trott@yorksj.ac.uk ) by 16th July 2021.

‘Trauma and Naturalism in the Later Novels of Toni Morrison and Philip Roth’

Dr Alan Gibbs

The IAAS was honoured to host Dr Alan Gibbs for the 2021 W. A. Emmerson lecture on June 2nd. 

The lecture was delivered online, followed by a lively and illuminating Q&A. It can be watched back via our YouTube channel. 

Many thanks again to Dr Gibbs for such a fantastic lecture!

Watch the lecture

 

The role
The School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics wishes to appoint a full-time Lecturer in American Modernist literature (Teaching and Scholarship). You will have a PhD (in hand) in a relevant subject area and proven experience in teaching American literature of the first half of the twentieth century to undergraduate students. An expertise in literatures of the Black Atlantic and/or African American literature is desirable.

You’ll be expected to convene a third-year (sole-taught) module in American Modernist literature, contribute teaching to the second-year team-taught module “Modernisms”, and to teach on first-year and MA modules in the area. You’ll also be expected to supervise undergraduate and postgraduate independent work. A record of high-quality research-led teaching in the period is essential.

This post is fixed-term for 12 months and the start date is expected to be 1st September 2021. Find out more here.

 

“Music in American Nineteenth Century History”

 

Co-editors: J. M. Mancini and Billy Coleman

 

Abstracts Due — 30 September 2021

Draft Papers Due — 30 May 2022 

Symposium – mid-June 2022 (tentative)

Full Papers Due for peer review — 30 September 2022
Planned publication — mid-2023

 

In the nineteenth-century United States, music was everywhere: at work, leisure, and prayer; in places of worship and in the home, on the battlefield and on the path of reform; in times of joy, in times of crisis, and in times of mourning.  And yet in comparison to literature or art and material culture, music and musical practice remain largely unsung within nineteenth-century US historiography.  Thus until recently most historians ignored music–or considered its analysis beyond the bounds of historical inquiry.  As a result, music has only begun to be treated as integral to the nineteenth-century experience, or analysed through a historical lens that sees and hears the world first and foremost through historical processes–social, economic, political, cultural, environmental–rather than through practices, parameters, and personnel derived from and internal to the world of music.  

 

Nonetheless, recent developments suggest that nineteenth-century American history is undergoing a musical turn.  The aim of this special issue is to build on this momentum by bringing together members of a growing, but disparate community of historians; musicologists; and historically-minded interdisciplinary scholars, for a timely conversation on music and nineteenth-century American history spanning the Revolution to the invention of recorded sound. Possible topics include:

 

  • What relationships existed between the many profound social transformations of the nineteenth century (e.g., emancipation; mass education/literacy; conquest; mass migration) and musical change?
  • How did the many forms of transregional encounter that characterised the nineteenth-century US (empire/conflict, migration, commerce, evangelism, reform) interact with musical exchange, both inside the US and globally? 
  • How can historians make sense of the many diverse settings for nineteenth-century US music, and the transformations that occurred both within those settings (congregations; domestic spaces; townscapes; military contexts; commercial stages; etc.) and in terms of overall shifts (e.g., the displacement of music-making in informal settings to performance in dedicated, often commercial spaces?) 
  • How did the gendering of music relate to broader historical trends?
  • How did technological rupture–from mass print to recorded sound–transform musical practice and the place of music in American life?  
  • How did music contribute to the construction of race and concepts of racial difference across the long nineteenth century?
  • What was the relationship between music, nation-making, and nationalism in nineteenth-century America? How did it evolve over time and space?
  • How did music practices, or perceptions of musical power, map onto different political ideologies or partisan-based identities?
  • How can historians think through the many binary relationships in nineteenth-century American music such as sacred/secular, commercial/non-commercial, signed/anonymous, individual/communal, private/public, written/oral, recorded/unrecorded, formal/informal?
  • What historiographical trends have shaped the incorporation of music into nineteenth-century American history over time? What new methodological opportunities may offer the most constructive paths forward?
  • How can scholars leverage recent technological and metahistorical developments to make historical music available to listeners and usable in the history classroom?

 

We seek submissions of 300–500 word abstracts proposing articles for consideration for publication, with full manuscripts to follow. In addition to the abstract, please advise us of your interest and capacity to participate in a symposium event for workshopping drafts (whether in-person or in a hybrid digital format).  Please also advise us of your potential interest in, and any musical or technical skills you may be willing to contribute to, a possible soundtrack album aimed at facilitating the use of this research in the classroom. Acceptance of an abstract does not mean acceptance of a paper and submitted papers will proceed through American Nineteenth Century History’s usual peer-review process.

 

Please send abstracts and all queries to J. M. Mancini (JoAnne.Mancini@mu.ie) or Billy Coleman (colemanw@missouri.edu) by September 30, 2021.

 

The IAAS is pleased to advertise that Dr. Alan Gibbs will deliver the W.A. Emmerson annual lecture on Wednesday, 2nd June at 6pm (BST). The lecture, ‘Trauma and Naturalism in the Later Novels of Toni Morrison and Philip Roth’, will be delivered online. Tickets are free. Attendees can register via Eventbrite 

here, and will be emailed the link to the lecture in the days before the event. 

The Rothermere American Institute and Mansfield College are seeking to recruit a Junior Research Fellow in Nineteenth-century United States History. The post is fixed-term for two years.

It is an opportunity for an early career historian to develop their own research and publications while also working with Professor Adam Smith to develop a new collaborative research project with a strong potential for external funding. The Research Fellow will have expertise related to the problem of political legitimacy in the nineteenth-century United States. Their research interests may include: the language, ideas or practice of politics; the intellectual history of the concept of political legitimacy; legal history; insurrections, riots and rebellions; or comparative or transnational perspectives on American political development. The Research Fellow will organise a seminar series at the RAI on a theme connected to their own research while contributing more generally to the academic life of the Institute.

 

Alongside a completed, or close to completion, doctorate in a relevant subject, some undergraduate teaching experience and specialist knowledge in the areas of research specified, the Junior Research Fellow will have the ability to manage their own academic research and will have a least one research publication. Excellent communication skills, professionalism, and a proven track record of working with others are essential to the role, as is the ability to contribute ideas for a new research project. Experience of writing grant applications will be an advantage.

Deadline for applications is 12:00 noon on Friday 23 April 2021.

See here for more details.