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    The Western Literature Association has proved to be an invaluable asset and I look forward to continuing to attend throughout my career.
    Jacqueline Harris
    PhD Candidate, University of Nebraska-Lincoln



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7th Triennial International Conference
of the Central European Association for Canadian Studies
9 – 11 October 2015, Zagreb, Croatia
Beyond the 49th Parallel: Canada and the North – Issues and Challenges

Keynote speakers: Prof. Aritha van Herk (University of Calgary, Canada)
Prof. Daniel Chartier (l’Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada)
Special guest: Prof. Mark Anthony Jarman (University of New Brunswick, Canada)

North, in Western culture, is the fundamental direction.

As a geographical notion, “the North” can be used to indicate any or all locations in the northern hemisphere, from the equator to the North Pole. In relation to the United States, all of Canada can be seen as “the North”. But within Canada there is a whole range of different “Norths”, both historically and at present: the “Pays d’en Haut” of the voyageurs, the old Northwest, today’scamping and cottage country “up north”, the northern regions of many of the provinces (differing across the country), the northern territories (Yukon, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut), the Far North. Each of these reflects a different kind of “nordicity”, to use Canadian geographer Louis-Edmond Hamelin’s now widely adopted term.

Beyond geography, “the North” is also a concept, one that encompasses a broad range of meanings and symbolic values. It is an imagined space as well as a space for the imaginary, a space of myth as well as a space shaped by myth, by turns cruel and ennobling, enigmatic and inspiring, powerful and fragile. The country’s “northerness” is often viewed as one of its distinguishing features, a vital element in the Canadian identity – even when “the North” in this case may mean only the non-urban part of Canada north of the thin populated band hugging the border with the United States. It is also a source of pride – “the true North, strong and free” – and, increasingly, in an era of climate change, a challenge. Canada’s imagined and real Norths have been literary and cultural obsessions for centuries.

The aim of this conference is to explore both the literal and the imaginative aspects of the relationship between Canada and “the North” – geographical, economic, literary, linguistic, cultural, social, political, diplomatic, environmental. We seek submissions from all disciplines that deal with Canada and Canadian Studies.
The topics may include but are NOT limited to:

- the North and its representations: real and imaginary territory
- the North in Canadian literature: nordicity and its varieties
- First Nations artwork and literature
- the symbolic North in Canadian culture: hockey, curling, winter carnivals, canoes
- living in the North: Aboriginal communities, the life and survival of traditional cultures, demography and development of local communities, social problems
- North and South: Canada as America’s “North”, southern Canada and its “North”
- decision-making in the North: the roles of federal, provincial and territorial governments and of local administration
- the North and economic questions: exploitation of resources, gas and oil exploration, tourism
- the North and the international community: defense of Canadian sovereignty, the Arctic Council

We welcome proposals for twenty-minute presentations in the field of Canadian Studies. We accept paper proposals in English and French. Abstracts of between 150 and 250 words + a brief CV (150 words) should be submitted via the Paper Proposal Submission Form, which is to be found on the conference website. This must be sent by 30 April 2015 to the conference e-mail zagreb2015conference@gmail.com. Notification of acceptance of paper by 15 May 2015.

Conference website: http://zagreb2015.hkad.hr/
For more information, email us at zagreb2015conference@gmail.com
After the conference, selected papers will appear in a special publication issued by the Central European Association for Canadian Studies.

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Go West!
An area of multiple panels for the 2015 Film & History Conference: Journeys, Detours, Breakdowns

November 5-8, 2015

The Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor’s Club
Madison, WI (USA)

DEADLINE for abstracts:  June 1, 2015

AREA: Go West!

It seems that someone is always travelling somewhere in the Western.  Be it progressive or populist, romantic or realistic, epic or tragic the American errand into the Western’s wilderness transmits sets of assumptions about the American Character and the American Experience. Commenting on the economic, psychological, political, and social fluidities of American life, the Western frontier is itself constantly in flux.

But not all Western journeys that chart the expansion of Manifest Destiny, trace settlement patterns, trail cattle drives and gold rushes, follow Cavalry patrols, track the flight of Native Americans, or pursue outlaws are successful.  Detours and breakdowns occur along the way.  Some travelers in West do not reach their desired destinations.  Others are condemned to ride the range forever.

This area, comprising multiple panels, welcomes proposals on the subject of journeys, detours, and breakdowns in Western film and television. What kinds of men and women travel West?  Is one journey more successful than another? How important are the means of travel? Are there significant detours along the way? What causes a journey westward to break down? What kinds of journeys matter to Western audiences?  What kinds of journeys matter to Western directors?

Papers and panels may address any topic on travel in the Western.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

* Cattle Drives (Red RiverCattle Drive, CowboyThe Big LandTwo Tall MenThe CowboysCity SlickersThe Broken Trail)

* Wandering Men (Have Gun Will TravelThe SearchersShaneUnforgiven, True Grit, Winchester ’73The Oxbow IncidentNevada Smith)

* Travelling Women (Heller in Pink TightsTrue GritWestward The WomenBite The BulletThe Duchess and the Dirtwater FoxThe Professionals)

* Famous Trails (The Oregon TrailThe Santa Fe Trail, The California TrailThe Mormon Trail, the Old Spanish Trail)

* Gold and Land Rushes (Iron Horse, Cimarron, Tumbleweeds, Landrush, Sutter’s Gold, California, How The West Was Won, The Treasure of Sierra Madre, The Far Country, McKenna’s Gold )

* Travelling Outlaws and Lawmen (Three Bad Men, The Wild Bunch, Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid,  Seven Ways From Sundown, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly)

* Wagons Ho!(The Covered Wagon, The Big Trail, Fighting Caravans, Wagon Wheels, Wagon Master, Wagon Train, Utah Wagon Train, The Way West, The Last Wagon, The Wackiest Wagon Train in the West,  Dusty’s Trail, Meek’s Cutoff)

* Native Americans on the Trail (Geronimo, Cheyenne Autumn, Commanche, Ulzana’s Raid, Conquest of Cochise, Chato’s Land, Apache)

* On The Rails (Union Pacific, Once Upon A Time in The West, Wild Wild West, The Iron Horse, The Train Robbers, Once Upon A Texas Train, The Good, The Bad and the Weird)

Proposals for complete panels (three related presentations) are also welcome, but they must include an abstract and contact information, including an e-mail address, for each presenter. For updates and registration information about the upcoming meeting, see the Film & History website (www.filmandhistory.org).

Please e-mail your 200-word proposal by 1 June 2015 to the area chair:

Sue Matheson, University College of the North Email: smatheson@ucn.ca

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Open Access to the Encyclopedia of American Studies

Published by Johns Hopkins University Press for the American Studies Association (ASA), the Encyclopedia of American Studies covers the history, philosophy, arts, and cultures of the United States in relation to the world, from pre-colonial days to the present, from various perspectives and the global American Studies movement. With over 800 online, searchable articles and accompanying bibliographies, related websites, illustrations, and supplemental material, the Encyclopedia of American Studies is the leading reference work for American Studies. Access to content on this site is open to the public and is subject to copyright protection.





  • Western Literature Association (WLA)

    Founded in 1965, the Western Literature Association (WLA) is a non-profit, scholarly association that promotes the study of the diverse literature and cultures of the North American West, past and present.

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  • Western American Literature (WAL)

    (The Journal)

    Published by the Western Literature Association, Western American Literature is the leading journal in western American literary studies.

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