• Testimonials

    It is perennially inspiring to belong to an association where levity and brilliant work go hand in hand.
    Cheryll Glotfelty
    Associate Professor, English Department, University of Nevada Reno



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If you have a news item that you wish to appear on this page, please send it to Sabine Barcatta.


CFP—Cather International Seminar,
“Beyond Nebraska: Cather’s Pittsburgh”

Amid holiday celebrations and long-deferred reading, we hope that you will consider submitting by February 15 a 500-word abstract for a presentation at the next Cather International Seminar, “Beyond Nebraska: Cather’s Pittsburgh,” scheduled for June 11-17, 2017, at Duquesne University. The original call for papers at the Cather Foundation website https://www.willacather.org/learn/conferences-cfp is meant to be inspirational, not prescriptive; in other words, we welcome new approaches to Cather scholarship and especially seek new ideas from first-time seminarians and graduate students.  If you have questions about any topic you are considering, please drop either of us a line.  An expanded version of the cfp with recommended resources in local and regional collections is available upon request from Tim Bintrim: TBintrim@francis.edu. Education Director Tracy Tucker (ttucker@WillaCather.org) will acknowledge receipt of your abstract.  More conference information and registration will be available after the first of the year through the Willa Cather Foundation website.

And while snow covers most of our neighborhoods, these two superb virtual tours of Cather’s Pittsburgh constructed by Jim Jaap and Alex Evans at PSU-Greater Allegheny and by Joe Murphy at Fu Jen Catholic University in Taipai, give a sense of what awaits on the four neighborhood walking tours next summer. 
 https://sites.psu.edu/willacatherspittsburgh/ (Project of Jaap and Evans, with content from Murphy and Bintrim)
http://english.fju.edu.tw/lctd/asp/works/342/study.htm (Joe Murphy  “Double Birthday”)
http://english.fju.edu.tw/lctd/asp/works/51/study.htm (Joe Murphy “Paul’s Case”)

Carnegie Mellon UP in October released a new collection of six of Cather’s Pittsburgh short stories, edited by teacher, poet, and archivist Peter Oresick. The Foundation Bookstore has the volume in stock:   https://www.willacather.org/pittsburgh-stories-willa-cather  Sadly, Oresick succumbed to cancer just before the volume was released, but he gave us a timely collection of the six stories with the clearest ties to Pittsburgh.
We look forward to your inquiries or abstracts!

Happy Holidays,

Tim Bintrim and Jim Jaap
Co-Directors, “Beyond Nebraska: Willa Cather’s Pittsburgh”

TBintrim@francis.edu   jaj15@psu.edu


On September 14-16, 2017 the Western Lands & Peoples Initiative at Montana State University in Bozeman, with the College of Letters & Science and the MSU Library, will host a symposium, “Doig Country: Imagining Montana and the West” to celebrate the work of Ivan Doig and the acquisition of his papers by the university. See ivandoig.montana.edu/symposium-2017

We invite proposals for papers & presentations that address the literature, history, and geography of Montana and the West that Doig explored so intimately in his memoirs and fiction. Work need not directly address Doig’s writings, but should allow participants to enter into a broad discussion of the connections between landscape and human experience, history and fiction, what close observation and attention to place contributes to the various disciplines that engage us as scholars and as readers.

Please submit a 250-word abstract of your proposed presentation and a 1-page c.v. by January 6, 2017 to westernlandsandpeoples@montana.edu.


Call for Papers

American Literature Association Symposium

September 7-9, 2017

Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans, Louisiana

Regionalism and Place in American Literature


American regional writing, as a literary movement, often has a limited association with a few decades during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. At times, many writers have cringed at being described as “regional,” fearing limiting or marginalizing classification. Other writers have embraced the term.  However, more recent research has often argued for a renewed importance in regional scholarship or the scholarship of place and has redefined how we look at canonical definitions of regionalism and place.  This symposium seeks to deepen our understanding of the importance of regionalism and place in past and present American literature by continuing to question spatial boundaries and definitions.  Are regions confined to big patches of landscape or can cities and neighborhoods be regional?  How do we address or define more recent regional concepts like the “Postsouthern” or “Postwestern”?  What does regionalism look like in the 21st century and how does it define (or fail to define) our sense of place?  What is it to publish or write “regionally”?  We welcome paper proposals, panels and roundtable discussions on all aspects of regionalism and place within American literature and particularly encourage interdisciplinary papers and projects.

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Michael Steiner, Emeritus Professor of American Studies, California State University, Fullerton

One page proposals or panel suggestions can be sent to program director Dr. Sara Kosiba at skosiba@troy.edu by May 15th, 2017.



  • 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.
    Conference Proposals

  • Western American Literature (WAL)

    (The Journal)

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