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Call for Proposals: “In Search of the Interior Borderlands: Where Does the Midwest End and the Great Plains Begin?”

The Center for Western Studies seeks proposals for chapters to be included in an edited collection focused on exploring the dividing line, or imagined dividing line, between two of the nation’s understudied regions: the American Midwest and the Great Plains. This interior border has yet to become a significant point of discussion in the broader movement to analyze the borderlands of the United States and this volume is designed to advance the discussion in this direction.

Proposals should explain the author’s general approach to the topic and include the sources to be consulted as well as the author’s curriculum vitae. Topics to be explored include, but are by no means limited to, historical understandings of the Midwest/Great Plains dividing line; the geographical and topographical approaches to designating a dividing line; literary or other cultural understandings of a dividing line; analyses of the regionalist thought and practices which have contributed to belief in a dividing line; agricultural practices which help explain the dividing line; environmental factors such as rainfall, glaciation, river development, and grasses which help to delineate a dividing line; historic and more recent discussions of the taxonomy of American regions, especially the real and imagined boundaries between the Midwest, the Great Plains, and the West; the understandings of Native Americans, American settlers, immigrants, political leaders, environmentalists, geographers, political scientists, and others which help explain the dividing line.

A preliminary one-day symposium designed to promote discussion of these matters will be held at the Center for Western Studies at Augustana College on November 7, 2015. This symposium will be open to the public. Chapter proposals will be due November 20, 2015.  If a proposal is accepted, the author’s chapter will be due October 21, 2016. Final chapters should be approximately 5,000 words, including notes, and in Chicago style. All proposals should be sent to Harry Thompson, Executive Director of the Center for Western Studies, at hthomps@augie.edu. The editor of the collection will be Jon K. Lauck, President of the Midwest History Association. The edited collection will be published by the Center for Western Studies. If you are interested in participating in the symposium, contact Office Coordinator Erin Castle at ecastle@augie.edu at the Center for Western Studies, Augustana College, 2001 S Summit Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57197 (605-274-4007) before September 1, 2015.

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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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