• Testimonials

    WLA faculty are committed to graduate student mentorship and are eager to support student scholarship by offering valuable feedback and creating spaces for exchange and collaboration.
    Ho'esta Mo'e'hahne, 2018
    Scholar in Residence, Indigenous Nations Studies, Portland State University

News

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Wallace Stegner and the Changing American West:

Reimagining Place, Region, Nation, and Globe in an Era of Instability

 

-A Call for Papers and Other Creative Work-

 

Center for Western Lands and Peoples

Wallace Stegner Chair in Western American Studies

College of Letters and Science / Montana State University, Bozeman

By the time of his death, Wallace Stegner (1909-1993) had become the epitome of the politically engaged western American writer able to express himself across a range of genres, from fiction to history, autobiography, and essays. In books such as The Big Rock Candy Mountain, Wolf Willow, Beyond the Hundredth Meridian, Angle of Repose (Pulitzer Prize), and The American West as Living Space, Stegner brought to life and illuminated the West like few other authors. Of uppermost concern to Stegner were issues of transiency and community, landscape quality and degradation, family life, the importance of place, and the need for ways of living that foster stable social bonds and stable economies within the realities and constraints of western environments.

Twenty-five years after his passing and on the eve of the 110th year of his birth, we seek to assess the state of the North American West and its study through the lens of Stegner’s life, work, and legacy. We invite proposals for essays that revisit and reinterpret Stegner, but more broadly, we welcome proposals for work that reconsiders and reimagines Stegnerian themes and issues in light of the political, economic, and ecological tumult of our times. We seek insights from across disciplines, genres, and forms. Although we emphasize the written word, we seek contributions from the visual arts as well. What aspects of Stegner’s life and work have enduring value? How do contemporary issues of Indigenous sovereignty, gender inequality and feminism, immigration, the status of refugees, extreme economic disparities, and changes to the Earth System, especially global warming, alter our understanding of the West and the ways that Stegner envisioned it? How might our efforts to grapple with these issues compel us to reimagine the western past? How might Stegner and his work—critiqued, revised, updated—help us negotiate our unsettled present and point us toward alternative futures?

Contributions selected for this project will be presented at workshops and public events at Montana State University, May 9-11, 2019, and will be edited and included in an anthology of essays and illustrations. Please send 300-word abstracts to westernlandsandpeoples@montana.edu by November 5, 2018.

Mark Fiege (mark.fiege@montana.edu)
Professor of History
Wallace Stegner Chair in Western American Studies
Montana State University

Susan Kollin (susan.kollin@montana.edu)
Professor of English
Director, Center for Western Lands and Peoples
Montana State University

Mary Murphy (mmurphy@montana.edu)
Professor of History
Co-Director, Center for Western Lands and Peoples
Montana State University


Woodress Scholar Research Grants (2019)

The Cather Project of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln announces the availability of a Research Grant for visiting scholars.  This grant provides financial support for scholars to travel to and reside in Lincoln, NE, for four consecutive weeks, in order to conduct research on Willa Cather using Cather resources in Nebraska and at UNL. 

Applications are invited from early career scholars, advanced graduate students, recent PhDs, and faculty not yet tenured.  Projects should reflect the need for research at the UNL Archives and in Nebraska. Each Woodress Research Grant is $4,000 and the scholar is expected to be in residence in Lincoln for four consecutive weeks during March 1 – December 20, 2019.  The Cather Project will assist with advice about travel, lodging, and a trip to the Willa Cather Foundation in Red Cloud, Nebraska (2 ½ hours by car) to enable the scholar to research materials in the Foundation’s archives and visit the area of Cather’s childhood.

The Cather Project produces the Willa Cather Scholarly Edition and Cather Studies, both published by the University of Nebraska Press.  The Archives and Special Collections of the UNL Libraries hold the largest collection of Cather letters to and from her; edited typescripts; manuscripts; multiple editions of her works; and many other Cather-associated materials.  

Funding for the grants is from the Roberta and James Woodress Fund (created from a gift by Roberta and James Woodress; Mr. Woodress was an eminent Cather biographer and emeritus professor of English at University of California-Davis).

To apply, please send, as e-mail attachments, to Beth Burke at eburke3@unl.edu, the following items:

–     your c.v.
–     a statement of no more than 3 pages describing the proposed research project and the importance of materials and resources at UNL to your project
–     a sample of  scholarly writing (20-25pp: preferably focusing on Cather, though not necessarily exclusively)

In addition, two letters of recommendation should be sent directly by your recommenders to Beth (eburke3@unl.edu).  Letters should be specific to the fellowship and proposed project rather than general letters of recommendation from your job placement dossier.

The deadline for submission of materials is DECEMBER 30, 2018 and we will inform successful applicants by FEBRUARY 1, 2019. 

Guy Reynolds, Director, The Cather Project
309 Andrews Hall
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE  68588-0396
(402) 472-1919; www.cather.unl.edu




 

  • 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.

  • Western American Literature (WAL)

    (The Journal)

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