Western Literature Association

41st Annual Conference


Feeling Western

25-28 October 2006

The Grove Hotel, Boise, Idaho

Hosted by Tara Penry and Boise State University

NOTE: The schedule is subject to change and will be updated regularly as changes occur. The latest update was made on 9-7-06. If there are any scheduling conflicts for your session or questions of any kind, please contact Tara Penry.

WEDNESDAY, 25 October

1–4                 Executive Council Meeting                               River Fork

4–7                 Registration                                                       2nd Floor Landing

5–6:30           Executive Council Dinner                                  Cottonwood Grille

7:15-10         Welcome                                                            Evergreen
Tara Penry, WLA President                                        

                     Silent Film: Back to God’s Country, starring Nell Shipman
                        Introduction byTom Trusky, Idaho Film Collection
                        Original Score Performed by Bijou Orchestrette  


THURSDAY, 26 October

8–3                             Registration                                          2nd Floor Landing

8–5                             Book Exhibit                                        Aspen

Thursday  8–9:15    Session One

1A (Evergreen)         Mary Clearman Blew and Western Feminism      

Chair: O. Alan Weltzien, University of Montana, Western

Sarah Hulme, Utah State University: “Mending Geographies: Mary Clearman Blew’s Balsamroot
Susan Rowe, Boise State University: “Isolation and Identity in All But the Waltz
Cassie Hemstrom, Boise State University: “The Rebirth of the Sow in the River: Creating a Narrative of Choice in Mary Clearman Blew’s Writing Her Own Life
Evelyn I. Funda, Utah State University: “The ‘Threat to the Common Herd’: Monsters in Mary Clearman Blew’s Writing”       

1B  (Cedar)         Foreign Places in the Heart        

Chair: Nancy Owen Nelson, Yavapai College

Susan Lang, Yavapai College: From Juniper Blue
Nancy Owen Nelson, Yavapai College: From Don’t Stay Too Long: Memoir of an Army Brat
Penelope Reedy, Idaho State University: From Coffee Royal, Pocatello Blend/Rare Beans 
Charlotte M. Wright, University of Iowa Press: “Henry’s Story”

1C  (Rapids)      Understanding Animals in the Western Frontier

Chair: Sarah E. McFarland, Northwestern State University

Jennifer J. Clark, University of Southern California: “As Honest as the Horse Between My Knees: Slavery, Horsemanship, and Stewardship in the Western Novel”
Tamas Dobozy, Wilfrid Laurier University: “ ‘Between You, the Coyotes and the Crickets a Thought Don't Have Much of a Chance': The Artificial Frontiers of Sam Shepard's True West” 
Lauri Chose, Indiana University of Pennsylvania: “Writing Arctic Animals: Forging the Connection”
Andrew Wingfield, George Mason University: “Stalking the Mountain Lion”

1D (White Water)      Demystifying/Remystifying Robinson and Proulx

Chair: Susan Kollin, Montana State University

Elizabeth Lester Barnes, Boise State University: “Transcending Boundaries: The Un-Housing of Bachelard in Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping
Catherine Holmes, College of Charleston: “‘The Remystification of Nearly Everything’: Another Look at Myth, Metaphor, and Mobility in Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping
Sayzie Koldys, Boise State University: “Reimagining the Emptiest State: Magical Realism in Annie Proulx’s Wyoming Stories
Stacy Coyle, University of Denver: “Open Places vs. Charged Spaces in Annie Proulx”

1E  (River Fork)      Forces of Nature and Community in Cather’s Fiction

Chair: Anne Kaufman, Milton, Massachusetts

Angela Glover, University of Kansas: “Jim Burden, Lost in Space: How Liminality and Temperament Theory Work to Produce a Tragic Ending in Willa Cather’s My Antonia
Margaret Doane, California State University, San Bernardino: “‘Bridled by Caution’: Community-Enforced Conformity in Willa Cather’s Nebraska Novels”
Mark Hartvigsen, Boise State University: “‘Geography is a terribly fatal thing sometimes’: Determinism in O Pioneers!

1F  (Clearwater)      The Trouble with “Black” and “White”

Chair: Michael K. Johnson, University of Maine, Farmington

Brian Flota, George Washington University: “Whose Country Is It? Ishmael Reed and Percival Everett’s African American West”
Katie Rawson, University of Mississippi: “Roping Uncle Sam’s Canon: Narrative Voice and the American Myth of the West in The Life and Adventures of Nat Love
Amber Leonard, Leeward Community College: “A Place in Paradise:  Perceiving (In)authenticity in Tara Bray Smith’s West of Then
John Escobedo, Rice University: “The Racial Logic of White U.S. Mestizaje in Maria Amparo Ruiz de Burton’s Who Would Have Thought It? and The Squatter and the Don

1G  (Ivy)     Reading Western Fiction by Genre                         

Chair: Jill Heney, Boise State University

John Donahue, Concordia University: “Zane Grey’s Idaho, The Border Legion, and Deadwood
Paul Varner, Oklahoma Christian University: “Twenty-first Century Paperback Westerns”
William Katerberg, Calvin College: “At Home in Utopia: Time and Place in Utopian Science Fiction set in the American West”
John C. Davies, Bishop Grosseteste College & Portland State University: “Western Feeling, Feeling Western: The Novels of Molly Gloss”

1H (Suite 214)         Making Home In A Restless World: Perception, Representation, Preservation

Chair: Liz Stephens, Utah State University

Brandon R. Schrand, University of Idaho: “Curating Memory: Seeing Home as a Tourist”
Rob Kunz, Utah State University: “Growing Pains: The Battle over Land and Family in the Shadow of the Tetons”
Liz Stephens, Utah State University: “American West Heritage Center: The Selling of a Lifestyle, The Commodification of a Dream”
Denice Turner, University of Nevada, Reno: “Flying Home: Finding a Place in the Space of the West”

Thursday 9–10                                                                Coffee Break (Aspen)

Thursday  9:30–10:45                                                    Session Two

2A (Evergreen)       Emotion in the Western Classroom: Workshop and Conversation

Co-chairs:    Tara Penry, Boise State University, and Michelle Payne, Boise State University

2B  (Rapids)            Idaho Poetry: Charles Potts

Introduction by John Crawford, West End Press

2C (White Water)           Fiction Reading: Daniel Orozco and Joy Passanante

Introduction by Mary Clearman Blew, University of Idaho

2D (River Fork)            Sacajawea’s Story: A Lemhi Shoshone Perspective

Rozina George (Lemhi Shoshone), Great-grandniece of Sacajawea

2E (Clearwater)         Willa Cather and War

Chair: Mary R. Ryder, South Dakota State University 

Steven Trout, Fort Hays State University: “Willa Cather and War: An Overview”
Ann Romines, George Washington University: “Willa Cather’s Civil War: A Long Engagement”
Michael Gorman, Independent Scholar: “Jim Burden and the White Man’s Burden: My Antonia and the Plains Indian Wars”
Richard Harris, The Webb Institute: “One Little Feller’s Quest for ‘Something Splendid’: Another Look at Cather’s Claude Wheeler”

2F (Suite 214)         Encountering Western Landscapes:  Writing, Living, and Feeling One’s Way

Chair: Alex Hunt, West Texas A&M University

SueEllen Campbell, Colorado State University: “Things That Happen in Deserts”  
Alex Hunt, West Texas A&M University: “Annie Proulx’s Exploration Narrative: That Old Ace in the Hole and James William Abert’s Expedition to the Southwest
Barbara J. Cook, Mount Aloysius College: “Life Changes in an Instant: Changing Relationships with Western Landscapes”
Nina Björnsson, Eastern New Mexico University: “Gender/Migration/The West: Going TransAmerica”

Thursday  11–12:15                                                   Session Three

3A (Rapids)       Embodying Social and Environmental Justice

Chair: Steve Tatum, University of Utah

John Streamas, Washington State University: “The Diminishing Significance of Genre in the Literature of Wartime Japanese America”
Kyoko Matsunaga, Hiroshima University: “Meats, the Female Body, and Toxicity: Environmental Justice in Ruth L. Ozeki’s My Year of Meats
Hilary Hawley, Washington State University: “Cultural Activism as Environmental Justice in Castillo’s So Far From God
Dora Ramirez-Dhoore, Boise State University: “Third World Women and Ecological Matters in Tomás Rivera’s …y no se lo trago la tierra and Helena Maria Viramontes’s Under the Feet of Jesus

3B (White Water)       Domestic Violence in the West

Chair: Lillian Schlissel, Brooklyn College

Lillian Schlissel, Brooklyn College: “The Literary History of Secrets”
Barbara Richard, Independent Scholar, Washington: “Walking Wounded”
Mary Clearman Blew, University of Idaho
Judy Blunt, University of Montana
Jeanette Weaskus, Northwest Indian College

3C (River Fork)        Sex, Gender, and Social Critique in Plains Literature

Chair: Doug Werden, West Texas A&M University

Amy T. Hamilton, University of Arizona: “ ‘A Constant Move’: Adventure and Social Critique in Sarah Wakefield’s Captivity Narrative”
Peter L. Bayers, Fairfield University: “Charles Alexander Eastman’s From the Deep Woods to Civilization and the Shaping of Native Manhood”
Matt Evertson, Chadron State College: “Feeling Western Bodies: Sex and Settlement in the Narratives of Mari Sandoz”
Kim Palmore, University of California at Riverside: “My ‘Queer’ Àntonia

3D (Clearwater)       Knowing Western Rivers                                

Chair: T. S. McMillin, Oberlin College

Laurie McMillin, Oberlin College: “‘Ragged, Rugged, Dark-Complected’: Race, Reflection, and Twain’s Mississippi”
Mary Keller, University of Wyoming: “Native Ways of Knowing Rivers in the Rocky Mountain Region: From Creek Mary’s Blood to the Native Waters Curriculum”
T. S. McMillin, Oberlin College: “Into the Great Unknown: Powell’s Colorado River”
Nick Petzak, Case Western Reserve University: “Selling the Middle Fork”

3E (Ivy)      Cashing In? Money & Politics in the Production of West Coast Music

Chair: Brock Dethier, Utah State University

David Fenimore, University of Nevada, Reno: “Songs for Sale: Woody Guthrie’s Columbia River Compromise”
Karl Germeck, Utah State University: “The White Guy from Santa Monica: Ry Cooder and Chavez Ravine”
Brock Dethier, Utah State University: “The Cost of Artistic Independence”

3F (Suite 214)      Tales of Disaster: A Gathering of Creative Readings

Chair: Ann Putnam, University of Puget Sound

Beverly Conner, University of Puget Sound: “Hearing Voices”
Ann Putnam, University of Puget Sound: “Lights Go Out”
Sarah Jane Sloane, Colorado State University: “The Lifeguard,” from The Antler Diaries
Beth Kalikoff, University of Washington, Tacoma: “Café du Monde”

3G (Suite 320)        Judge Holden: The Mythic Trickster Rides the West in Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian

Chair: Jerry D. Mathes II, University of Idaho

Jerry D. Mathes II, University of Idaho: “Classical Tricksters and Judge Holden’s Malevolent Power”
Steven Coughlin, University of Idaho: “Landscape of the Tricksters”
Joshua Cilley, University of Idaho: “Trickster Fools in Blood Meridian
Sean Prentiss, University of Idaho: “Convergence and Divergence of Tricksters in Blood Meridian and Winter in the Blood

3H  (Cedar)       The Academic Library of the Future: What’s In It for the Literary Scholar?

Chair: Thomas Peele, Boise State University

Donald Barclay, University of California, Merced
Alan Virta, Boise State University
Denise Shorey, Northwestern University
Larry Kincaid, Boise State University

3I (Grove Lobby)       Basque Block Tour                                                      

Preregistration required. Cost: $5. Also offered Wed 10/25—1:30 pm.
Meet at Grove Hotel lobby and walk across Capitol Blvd to Basque Block. This tour will only appear in the final program if a sufficient number of members have preregistered for it. Space limited.

Thursday 12:15–2        Past President’s Address & Luncheon     (Evergreen)

12:15          Luncheon
1–1:45       Address: William Handley, University of Southern California

Open seating will be available at 1 pm for those who wish to hear the address only. All WLA registrants are welcome to attend at this time.

Thursday  2–3:15                                                            Session Four

4A  (Rapids)       Feeling Western on/under the Skin

Chair: Krista Comer, Rice University

Elizabeth J. Wright, Pennsylvania State University, Hazelton: “An ‘Unexpected Visitor’: Disability and Family Politics in the Fiction of Laura Ingalls Wilder”
Linda Lizut Helstern, North Dakota State University: “Written on the Skin: Ableism and the Native Subject”
Krista Comer, Rice University: “Feeling Western/Feeling White”
Bruce Ballenger, Boise State University: Title pending                        

4B (White Water)           Stock-Taking in the Literary Northwest

Chair: Peter Donahue, Birmingham Southern College

John Trombold, Independent Scholar, Oregon: “Reading Portland: Toward a Place-Based Pedagogy of Politics”
Peter Donahue, Birmingham-Southern College: “Taking Stock of the Stock-Takers: Regional Identity and the 1946 Writers’ Conference on the Northwest”
Michael Strelow, Willamette University: “Lost and Found: Authors, Editors, and Publishers in the Northwest”
Philip Heldrich, University of Washington, Tacoma: “The Absence and Presence of Mount Rainier: Ansel Adams, Martha Hardy, and the Mountain”

4C (River Fork)     Women’s Collaborations and Relationships in Willa Cather’s Fiction and Career

Chair: Ann Romines, George Washington University

Michael Schueth, Creighton University: “‘Her Masterful Will’: Mary Baker G. Eddy, Celebrity Biography, and Cather’s Canon”
Pat Brennan, Clarkson College: “The Sister Narratives of Willa Cather”
Mary R. Ryder, South Dakota State University: “That D---d Mob of Women Performers: Women Artists as Rivals in Cather’s Fiction”
Janis P. Stout, Texas A & M University: “Curious Connections: Cather, Silko, and Randall in the Southwest”

4D  (Clearwater)     Wild Encounters

Chair: Charles Crow, Bowling Green State University

Michael L. Johnson, University of Kansas: “Wildfire: A Taste of Authenticity”
Bob Lyon, Bellevue, Washington: “Blowups: Fact and Fiction in Firefighting”
Christopher McGill, Boise State University: “Wildness Wherever: Social Subversion and the Wilderness Experience of Charles Bowden’s Blood Orchid
Susan J. Tyburski, Colorado School of Mines: “Seduced by the Wild: Audrey Schulman’s Journey into the Arctic Heart of Wilderness”

4E  (Ivy )       Proto-Westerns and Early Westerns

Chair: Lawrence I. Berkove, University of Michigan, Dearborn

Nicolas Witschi, University of Western Michigan: “‘I do not like newspaper notoriety’: Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, The James Gang, and the Op-Ed Autobiography”
Jefferson D. Slagle, St. Bonaventure University: “The Heirs of Buffalo Bill: Performing Authenticity in the Dime Western”
Seth Bovey, Louisiana State University, Alexandria: “Pulp Fiction, Gangster Films, and the Beginnings of the Noir Western”

4F (Suite 214)      Reading and Teaching Intermountain Western Women

Chair: Pamela Steinle, California State University, Fullerton

Ron McFarland, University of Idaho: Title pending
Christine Shearer-Cremean, Black Hills State University: “No Place to Raise a Girl: The Destructive Secular Wilderness of Kim Barnes’s In the Wilderness
Susan Swetnam, Idaho State University: “Western Family Romance as Western Political Manifesto: Grace Jordan’s Home Below Hell’s Canyon
Yvonne Rutford, University of Wisconsin, Superior: “Anger Issues: A Reflection on Teaching Terry Tempest Williams’ Refuge

4G (Suite 320)    Insiders, Outsiders, and Their Stories of Place

Chair: Karen Uehling, Boise State University

Jamin Casey, Montana State University: “Living in the Landscape: The Relationship between a Sense of Being Local and the Attitude toward the Landscape It Generates”
Hal Crimmel, Weber State University: “A Place in the Sun: A Northerner Meets the Desert West”
David Mogen, Colorado State University: “Boom and Bust”
Jacoba Mendelkow, Utah State University: “Tractor”

Thursday  3-6      Shuttle to/from Anne Frank Memorial (Front Street exit, Grove Hotel)

Thursday 4–5:15         Plenary Session (Anne Frank Memorial, 8th St. & Boise River)

Poetry Reading: Human Rights and the American West/Featuring Lawson Fusao Inada

6–7                 Graduate Students’ Dinner (Satchel’s Grill)

Thursday 7:30-9   Distinguished Achievement Award Lecture (Egyptian Theatre): Featuring Terry Tempest Williams

Friday, 27 October

7–8                         Past Presidents’ Breakfast (Cedar)

8–5                         Registration (2nd Floor Landing)

8–5                         Book Exhibit (Aspen)

Friday  8–9:15            Session Five

5A (Evergreen)      Predators in the West: Narratives and Counter-Narratives         

Chair: Tom Lynch, University of Nebraska, Lincoln

Eric Heyne, University of Alaska, Fairbanks: “Moose Ranching and Lupine Narration: Alaska’s Love/Hate Affair with Wolves”
Tom Lynch, University of Nebraska, Lincoln: “El Lobo’s Return: A Bioregional Narrative of Re-wilding”
Sherry Booth, Santa Clara University: “Thinking about Canis lupus: The Literary Wolf and Ecofeminism”
Capper Nichols, University of Minnesota: “Grizzly Men: Treadwell, Peacock, Herzog”

5B (Rapids)     Feminized Spaces of Western Literature

Chair: Audrey Goodman, Georgia State University

Melissa Bowles, Utah State University: “‘If I Had Children’: May Swenson’s Poetic/Motherly Work” 
Amy Baird, Utah State University: “In the Shelter of the Tortilla: The Role of the Kitchen in the Art of Carman Lomas Garza and in Elva Trevino Hart’s memoir, Barefoot Heart: Stories of a Migrant Child
Dan Holtz, Peru State College: “Marion Marsh Brown Country: A Worthwhile Stop in Nebraska’s Literary Geography”

5C (White Water)es         Western Women’s Voices                                               

Chair: Jennifer Dawes Adkison, Idaho State University

Jennifer Dawes Adkison, Idaho State University: “Appropriating Voice: Textual Editing and Western Women’s Narratives”
Carmen Pearson, Mount Royal College: “‘Unpublished Emotion’: Interpreting the Private Diaries of Carmen Barragán Messinger, Mexican American”
Laura Woodworth-Ney, Idaho State University: “‘The Best-trained Ditch Can Never Be a River, Nor the Gentlest Wife a Girl Again’: History and the Female Literary Critique of Irrigated Settlement”
Nancy Rushforth, Utah Valley State College: “The Teller Tells the Tale”

5D (River Fork)         Violence, Catharsis, and Western Embodiment

Chair: David Mogen, Colorado State University

Marc Dziak, Boise State University: “Fingers Ripping Out Teeth, Teeth Biting Off Fingers: Naturalism and Inherent Brutality in Frank Norris’s McTeague
Wendy Witherspoon, University of Southern California: “Deadwood: Lawlessness, Violence, and the Postmodern Gothic Frontier”
Tim Steckline, Black Hills State University: “Kidneystones, Pigpens, and Bodily Catharsis in Deadwood
Doug Werden, West Texas A&M University: “Poetry as Mulch: Linda Hasselstrom as a Prairie Poet”

5E (Clearwater)     Storying Western Science and History

Chair: Karen Ramirez, University of Colorado, Boulder

Dorys C. Grover, Texas A&M University, Commerce: “Vardis Fisher and the Death of Meriwether Lewis”
Megan Jensen, California State University, Fullerton: “Embedded in the Soil: The Treelessness of the Tallgrass Prairies Through 1862”
Ann Lundberg, Northwestern College: “The Origin of the Black Hills: Native Stories and Geological Narratives”
Lee Schweninger, University of North Carolina, Wilmington: “‘Something to Wail About’: A Literature of the Whale and the Makah Hunt”

5F (Ivy)      Interpreting Texas and the Literary Plains

Chair: Diane Quantic, Wichita State University

Susanne George Bloomfield, University of Nebraska, Kearney: “First Inhabitants”
Daryl W. Palmer, Regis University: “Plains Emotion: What Willa Cather Made of Kansas”
Chen Xu, Hangzhou Dianzi University, People’s Republic of China: “An Interpretation of Larry McMurtry’s Lonesome Dove
Kyhl Lyndgaard, University of Nevada, Reno: “Collaboration, Competition, and Relocation in the Life and Works of Edwin James”

5G (Suite 214)     Narratives of Mormon Gender and Resistance

Chair: Christine Edwards Allred, Eagle, Idaho

Kacy Lundstrom, Utah State University: “The Seductress and the Seduced: Notions of Gender in Samson and Delilah”
Russ Beck, “The Missionary Position”
Heather Robison, University of Washington: “Interstices of Religion, Politics, and Land Management in Rural Nevada; or, A Mormon Girl Gone Left”

Friday  9–10       Coffee Break (Aspen)

Friday  9:30–10:45       Session Six

6A (Evergreen)     Periodicals, Politics, and Western Feeling           

Chair: Chadwick Allen, Ohio State University

Marcia Hensley, Western Wyoming Community College: “‘Hats Off to the Girl Who Has Staked Out a Claim:’ Journalists Promote Single Women Homesteaders”
Nicole Tonkovich, University of California, San Diego: “Public Letters and the Allotment of Indian Lands”
Chadwick Allen, Ohio State University: “Tonto on Vacation; or, How to be an Indian Lawyer”       

6B (Cedar)     Feeling on Film

Chair: Len Engel, Quinnipiac University

Jette Morache, College of Southern Idaho: “Short Story to Screenplay: The Significance of Salmon and Community in Smoke Signals
Len Engel, Quinnipiac University: “Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia: Sam Peckinpah’s Macabre, Over-the-Top, Morality Tale”
John M. Gourlie, Quinnipiac University: “Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby: The Deep Heart’s Core”
Jennilyn Merten, University of Utah: “Don’t Cry For Me South Dakota: Deadwood, Brokeback Mountain, and the 21st-Century Western”

6C (Rapids)   Under European Eyes: Real and Imagined Wests in European Texts

Chair: Neil Campbell, University of Derby

Neil Campbell, University of Derby: “The Delirious Outside: Rem Koolhaas and the Architecture of Western Studies”
John Beck, University of Newcastle: “‘The Eyes Want to Close’: European Appropriations of the American Desert”
Pierre Lagayette, Sorbonne University: “Visions of the West in French Comics: From Cliché to Critique”

6D (White)    Women and the Popular Western

Chair: Victoria Lamont, University of Waterloo

John Clayton, Independent Scholar: “The Lady Writer and the Lady Doc”
Victoria Lamont, University of Waterloo: “The Doctor Was No Lady: The Woman Professional in Caroline Lockhart’s The Lady Doc
Christine Bold, University of Guelph: “Women in the Frontier Club”

6E (River Fork)    Myths, Truths, and Translations from California and the Southwest

Chair: William Handley, University of Southern California

José Aranda, Rice University: “Feeling Mexican in the West Before 1960: The Hollywood Western vs. Real Californios”
Steve Davis, Texas State University: “Eros in Dobie Country”
Michael C. Ryan, Ohio University: “Translations of Anzaldua’s Spanish Poems: A Reading”

6F (Clearwater)       Homing: Creative Testimonies of Family, Migration, Place

Chair: Ron McFarland, University of Idaho

Amy Garrett-Brown, Boise State University: “Syncope”
Mary Webb, University of Nevada, Reno: “Absent Places: A Military Family’s (Dis)Location”
Sherman Sutherland, Ohio University: “Thirty-Two Hours from Home: A Familiar Essay”
John T. Price, University of Nebraska, Omaha: “Love Mountain”

6G (Ivy)    Writing Borders and Communities

Chair: TBA

Linda Palen Ruzich, University of Nevada, Reno: “Low-Riders, Grafitismos, and Border-Crossers: Identity, Resistance, and An-Other Space in Ballejos’ and Witt’s El Indio Jesus
Mikage Kuroki, University of California, Riverside: “The Landscape of Karen Tei Yamashita’s Tropic of Orange: Re-Peopling L.A.’s Layers of Space and Time”
Daniel Gustav Anderson, University of Idaho: “Loka: A Record of Space-Based Pedagogy, Impersonal Writing, and Becoming-Other at Naropa Institute, 1974”
Jennifer K. Ladino, Creighton University: “Toward a Culture of Life: The Politics of Nostalgia in Ruth Ozeki’s All Over Creation

6H (Suite 214)     Sadness, Emptiness, Irony, Fear: Modern and Existential Western Writers

Chair: Edgar H. Thompson, Emory & Henry College

Stephen Cook, California State University, Sacramento: “Sadness for No Reason: Tom McGuane’s Existential Struggle”
Robert Murray Davis, University of Oklahoma: “Dream Dump and Artist’s Burden: Sex, Death, and Art in the Hollywood of The Day of the Locust and The Loved One
Kerry Ahearn, Oregon State University: “Elliot Paul's Modernist West”
Edgar H. Thompson, Emory & Henry College: “Battles in the Kingdom of Fear: Hunter S. Thompson at Home in the West”

Friday  11–12:15                    Session Seven

7A  (Evergreen)      Literary Sins Revisited

Chair: James H. Maguire, Boise State University

Christine Hill Smith, Longmont, Colorado: “Mary Hallock Foote, Pioneer Illustrator, Writer, and ... Snob!” 
Diane Quantic, Wichita State University: “Women Reading Margaret Hill McCarter: Culture and Club Women in Kansas, 1900–1940”
James C. Work, Colorado State University (Original recipient of Willa Pilla award, in Boise, 1981): “Cather’s Confounded Conundrums” 

7B (Cedar)      Nevada Dramas: Comstock to CSI

Chair: Bonney MacDonald, Union College

Lawrence I. Berkove, University of Michigan, Dearborn: “Theatrical Riches from Nevada’s Silver Land”
Steve Tatum, University of Utah, & Nathaniel Lewis, St. Michael’s College: “Morte Las Vegas”

7C (Rapids)        Ecotraumas and Literary Paradigms for Healing

Chair: Barbara J. Cook, Mount Aloysius College

James Barilla, Lake Forest College: “After the Deluge: Disaster and Renewal in T.C. Boyle’s A Friend of the Earth
J. Gerard Dollar, Siena College: “Feeling Clearcuts: Ravaged Woods, Lost Magic in Louise Erdrich & Rick Bass”
Astrid Melchart, Utah State University: “Healing Narratives - An Exclusive Cure For A Specific People?”

7D (White Water)        The Territory of Aesthetics: Toward a New American Sublime

Chair: Colin M. Robertson, Nevada Museum of Art

Colin M. Robertson, Nevada Museum of Art: “Inventing the Sublime: Contemporary Artists’ Responses to the History of an Idea”
Phillip David Johnson II, University of Nevada, Reno: “Looking for Hope:Assessing the Sublime and the Picturesque in Postindustrial Places”
Anne M. Wolfe, Nevada Museum of Art: “Engineering the Sublime: Visual Representations of Water in the American West”
Terre Ryan, University of Navada, Reno: “‘Plantations of God’: Sentiment, the Sublime, and the Aesthetics of Clearcuts”

7E (River Fork)      Western Nationalisms and Internationalisms

Chair: José Aranda, Rice University

Susan Kollin, Montana State University: “Before the Western was a Noun”
Lourdes Alberto, Rice University: Title pending
Elixabete Ansa-Goicoechea, University of Indiana: “The Deep Blue Memory: A Reformulation of Basque National Identity in the Western United States”
Elaine E. Limbaugh, Portland State University: “The Australian/American Connection”

7F (Clearwater)       Unconventional Western Women Writers

Chair: Judy Nolte Temple, University of Arizona

Judy Nolte Temple, University of Arizona: “‘Fixing’ Baby Doe: The Writer Behind the Legend”
Alison Reuschlein, University of Arizona: “Mary MacLane as Revolutionary/Reinscriptionist”
Lauryn Bianco, …: “The Queer Body as Interruption in The Bean Trees
Taylor Mariah Johnson, University of Arizona: “Legacy of Action: Julia Butterfly Hill’s New Western Narrative”

7G (Ivy)      Western Poetry, Poetics, and Politics

Chair: Jennifer Ladino, Creighton University

Bill D. Toth, Western New Mexico University: “No Fission in Peggy’s Pond: The Poetry of Peggy Pond Church and Niels Bohr’s Principle of Complementarity”
Sarah Stoeckl, Utah State University: “The Poetical is Political: Community and Political Activism in the Poetry of Anne Waldman”
Maure L. Smith, Utah State University: “Place-based Poetry: May Swenson’s Westernness”
Michael Gorman, Lincoln, Nebraska: “The Poet Laureate and American Pastoral Ideology”

7H (Suite 214)       Tricksters, Dreamers, Survivors

Chair: Linda Lizut Helstern, North Dakota State University

Michael Terry, Utah State University: “Coyote Conundrum: Trickster Twists in Vine Deloria’s Custer Died for Your Sins
Henry Stewart, Centenary College: “Of Dreams and Disillusionment: Dreams as Reality and Reality as Dreams in Sherman Alexie’s Reservation Blues
Angela Elliott, Centenary College: “Sorrow and Survival: The Storyteller's Journey in Sherman Alexie's Reservation Blues
Richard Hutson, University of California, Berkeley: “Survivance or the Non-Vanishing American: Charles Eastman”


Friday  12:30–1:45                 Session Eight

8A (Evergreen)       Teaching Life: The Pedagogical Challenges of Memoir and Autobiography                  

Chair: Susan Maher, University of Nebraska, Omaha

Kathleen Boardman, University of Nevada, Reno: “Whose Story? Talking about Ethics in the Autobiography Class”
Drucilla M. Wall, University of Missouri, St. Louis: “The Voice in Four Directions: American Indian Memoir in the Writing Classroom”
John T. Price, University of Nebraska, Omaha: “Anyway, Back to Me: Addressing the Myth of Solipsism in the ‘Placed’ Memoir”

8B (Cedar)      Deadwood and Emotion

Chair: Michael K. Johnson, University of Maine, Farmington

John Smith, Clemson University: “Reading Lessons: Steering the Narrative in Deadwood’s ‘Suffer the Little Children’”
Chad Hammett, Texas State University: “Milch and Me”
John Dudley, University of South Dakota: “‘Land of Oblivion’: Abjection, the Body, and the Western Narrative in HBO's Deadwood
Michael K. Johnson, University of Maine, Farmington: “Queer Spaces and Emotional Couplings in Deadwood

8C (Rapids)      John Steinbeck and His Contemporaries    

Chair: Stephen Olsen-Smith, Boise State University

Stephen Cooper, Troy University: “The Dust Bowl Revisited: William Humphrey’s A Time and a Place
Jessica Bremmer, University of Southern California: “Refiguring Steinbeck’s California: What if Sanora Babb’s Whose Names Are Unknown Had Come First?”  
Susan Shillinglaw, San Jose State University: “Steinbeck, Ricketts and the Ecology of Place”

8D (White Water)      Animals in the Literary West: Intimacy and Agency

Chair: Sarah E. McFarland, Northwestern State University

Diane Guichon, University of Calgary: “Life Savers, Steak, and Mirrors: Animal Representations in Fred Stenson’s Lightning
Merit Kaschig, College of William and Mary: “‘Dumb Dogs and Dick(ie)s’: Inter-specific Intimacy vs. Procreative Agency in the Western Literary Imagination”   
Rebecca Onion, University of Texas at Austin: “Lead Dogs and Heroic Masculinity in the New Age of Celebrity”
Sarah E. McFarland, Northwestern State University: “Performing Timothy Treadwell: How the Bears Made the Man”

8E (River Fork)    Telling the Stories

Chair: P. Jane Hafen (Taos Pueblo), University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Gwen W. Griffin, Minnesota State University, Mankato: “Tohan Dakota unkokiyakapi sni: When we don't tell our own stories”
Patrice Hollrah, University of Nevada, Las Vegas: “‘Nobody Wants to Hear These Things’: Why Sherman Alexie's ‘Can I Get a Witness?’ Needs to Be Told”
P. Jane Hafen (Taos Pueblo), University of Nevada, Las Vegas: “‘I Deplore Propaganda’: Response to Zitkala-Sa and ‘Oklahoma's Poor Rich Indians’”
John Purdy, Western Washington University: “The Pains of ‘Progress’ in the West”

8F (Clearwater)      New Mexico and the Southwest: Magic, History, Authenticity

Chair: TBA

Audrey Goodman, Georgia State University: “Open Graves and Magical Borderlands in the Fiction of Arturo Islas and Luis Alberto Urrea”
Don Scheese, Gustavus Adolphus College: “The Presence of the Prehistoric in Literature and Art about Bandelier”
Eric Chilton, University of Arizona: “‘An Exact Reproduction’: Narratives of Authenticity in Mary Colter’s Grand Canyon Architecture”
Robert W. King, Utah State University: “Modernity’s Pilgrims: The Search for Authenticity in The Professor’s House and Heritage of the Desert

8G (Ivy)      Western Aesthetics in Art and Literature

Chair: Jan Widmayer, Boise State University

Michael A. Brown, Creighton University: “Galaxy (1949): Jackson Pollock’s Other Wyoming Landscape”
Mary K. Stillwell, University of Nebraska, Lincoln: “Chiaroscuro: Light and Shadow: The Aesthetics of Place and Time in the Work of Ted Kooser”
Allan Juhl Kristensen, University of Newcastle: “PrairyErth: The Aesthetics of the Deep Map”
Jenny Emery Davidson, College of Southern Idaho, Blaine County: “Looking in the Corners for a Regional Aesthetics: Contemporary Western Literature and the Drawings of James Castle”

8H (Suite 214)       Anticipating and Revisiting Brokeback Mountain

Chair: Sara Spurgeon, Texas Tech University

O. Alan Weltzien, University of Montana, Western: “Standing before Brokeback Mountain: Queering the Northern Rockies”
Sara Spurgeon, Texas Tech University: Title pending
David Peterson, University of Nebraska, Omaha: “‘Everything built on that’: Landscape and Homophobia in the Brokeback Mountain Corpus”

Friday  2–3:15        Demi-Plenary I

A (Evergreen)       Name Change: The Western Culture Association

Chair: Ann Ronald, University of Nevada, Reno   

Ann Ronald, University of Nevada, Reno
Melody Graulich, Utah State University
Susan Bernardin, SUNY, Oneonta
Alicia Garza, Boise State University
Laurie Ricou, University of British Columbia
Charles Crow, Bowling Green State University

B (White)                Teaching in Place

Chair: Jacky O’Connor, Boise State University

Karen Ramirez, University of Colorado, Boulder: “Place Matters: Simon Ortiz’s From Sand Creek and the Development of a Place-Based Pedagogy”
Janis Johnson, University of Idaho, & Georgia Grady Johnson, University of Idaho: “Pedagogy of Place: Learning on Tribal Land”
Lisa Slappey, Rice University: “Teaching on Buffalo Bayou: An Urban Pedagogy of Community and Environment”

C (River Fork)      Fiction Reading: Mitch Wieland and Anthony Doerr

Introduction by Devan Cook, Boise State University

D (Ivy)                   Readers’ Theater

The Psychoscope (1871), by Rollin Daggett and Joe Goodman

Friday  3:30–4:45         Demi-Plenary II

A (Evergreen)       Fiction Reading: Kim Barnes and Claire Davis

Introduction by Mary Clearman Blew, University of Idaho

B (Clearwater)          Native Legends: Wilson Wewa (Northern Paiute, Nez Perce, Palouse)

Introduction by Gail Shuck, Boise State University

C (Ivy)                       Poetry Reading: Janet Holmes and Alvin Greenberg

Introduction by Amy Garrett-Brown, Boise State University

Friday  4:45–6 (River Fork & Rapids)             WLA 40th Birthday Reception

Friday  6–11 (Evergreen)                              WLA Awards Banquet & Dance

Saturday, 28 October 

8–noon  (Aspen)             Book Exhibit 

Saturday  8–9:15                  Session Nine

9A (Evergreen)       Reading Desert Women: Williams, Austin, Meloy

Chair: Susanne Bloomfield, University of Nebraska, Kearney

 Alf Seegert, University of Utah: “Loving the Land Without Becoming the Land: The Intimate Distance of Place-Connectedness in Mary Austin and Terry Tempest Williams”
Nicole Sheets, University of Utah: “Redirecting Appetites in The Anthropology of Turquoise
Paul Wilson, University of Utah: “Biological Essentialism and Ellen Meloy’s The Anthropology of Turquoise
Sharon A. Reynolds, Palomar College: “Downhome Eloquence in the Southwest: Ellen Meloy’s Prose of Place”

9B (Cedar)        History, Memory, and Cather’s Fiction

Chair: Evelyn Funda, Utah State University

Timothy Bintrim, Saint Vincent College: “Sublime Blizzards in the Fiction of Willa Cather and Annie Prey”
Amanda Kuhnel, University of Nebraska, Lincoln: “O Pioneers! and Compassionate Agriculture”
Chris Kemp, Wichita State University: “Children of the Moon: The Search for Kinship and the Power of Memory in the Novels of Willa Cather”
Matthew Lavin, Utah State University: “Competing Characterizations Coalesce; or, Collier's Restores Tom Outland's Out West Self Esteem”

9C (Rapids)      Stegner, Abbey, Lopez

Chair: Matt Burkhart, University of Arizona

Dynette Reynolds, University of Utah: “Moon-Eyed Professors: The Different Wildernesses of Edward Abbey and Wallace Stegner”
Matthew Heimburger, University of Utah: “The Gospel of St. Edward Abbey: Desert Solitaire as Holy and Unholy Writ”
Matt Burkhart, University of Arizona: “Writing Magic Carpets into Navajo Country? Reckoning with Flights of Fancy in Barry Lopez’s Early Fiction”

9D (White Water)     Locational Identities: Narratives of Western Migration and Diaspora

Chair: Jan Keessen

Linda H. Ross, University of Wyoming: “‘Are We There Yet?’: Immigration in the Western States”
Sarah Wald, Brown University: “Environment, Identity and Mobility in Steinbeck’s TheGrapes of Wrath and Viramontes’ Under the Feet of Jesus
Stephen Macauley, Utah State University: “Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath as a Model for Understanding Diaspora and Movement in the 21st Century”
Susan Naramore Maher, University of Nebraska, Omaha: “Far and Near: Setting the Coordinates of Space, Memory, and Identity in Linda Hasselstrom’s Feels Like Far

9E (River Fork)     Short Fiction

Chair: Stephen Cook, California State University, Sacramento

Twister Marquiss, Texas State University, San Marcos: “Boom and Bust”
Iver Arnegard, Ohio University: “Wolf Lake”
Jackie Pugh Kogan, California State University, Northridge: “Shells”
Willard Wyman, Independent scholar: From High Country

9F (Clearwater)     Early American Literature of Nature and the West

Chair: Tom J. Hillard, University of Arizona

Tom J. Hillard, University of Arizona: “Mary Rowlandson and the American Gothic Wilderness”
Brady Edwards, Utah State University: “Confronting the Interior Gothic Landscape of Emily Dickinson’s Poetry”
Jim Bishop, University of Nevada, Reno: “A Feeling Farmer: Masculinity, Nationalism, and Ecology in Crevecoeur's Letters from an American Farmer”
Elizabeth Mack, University of Nebraska, Omaha: “Caroline Kirkland vs. Daniel Boone: How Women’s Memoir Helped Dispel the Frontier Myth”

9G (Ivy)      Mortality and Place: Creative Readings

Chair: Amber Leonard, Leeward Community College

Lowell Mick White, Texas A&M University: “The Road Back to Destruction Bay”
Melinda M. White, Utah State University: “The Ink that Weights Us” and “Holding onto Breath”
Alice Maahs, University of Idaho: “Before Easter’s Sunrise”
Ben Quick, University of Arizona: “The Shape of Grief”

Saturday 9:30–10:30             Session Ten

10A (Evergreen)         The Personal Essay and/as Literary Criticism       

Chair: David Cremean, Black Hills State University

Heidi Naylor, Boise State University: “Opening the Chapel Doors: Taking Reader Response from Maxim to Practice”
Alisha Paxton, Utah State University: “Personal Criticism: An Experiment in Narrative”
David Cremean, Black Hills State University: “Mind-ing Waste as We W(a/o)nder; or, Excreta in the West(ern)”

10B (Cedar)     Twice-Told Tales and Experimental Narratives

Chair: Leslie Durham, Boise State University

Angela Waldie, University of Calgary: “Klondike Raconteur: Robert Kroetsch’s (Re)citation of ‘The Shooting of Dan McGrew’ in The Man from the Creeks
Anne L. Kaufman, Milton, Massachusetts: “Stories Move in Herds: Sisters of Grass and Archives of Memory”
Melanie J. Martin, Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania: “Myths of Loss, Myths of Power: Disappearing Animals in American Indian Stories”

10C (Rapids)        Mary Hallock Foote in Boise

Slideshow and lecture by Judy Austin, Idaho Historical Society
Members of the Foote/Old Boise tour are encouraged to attend

10D (White Water)      Interdisciplinary Approaches to Steinbeck

Chair: Rodney Rice, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology

Patrick K. Dooley, St. Bonaventure University: “John Steinbeck’s ‘Respect for’ and ‘Respectful Use of Persons’ Ethic in The Grapes of Wrath and Harvest Gypsies
Daniel Griesbach, University of Washington: “The Red Pony’s Political Unconscious”
Elisa Warford, University of Maryland: “‘And That Feeling Must Go into It’: Sentimentality in The Grapes of Wrath

10E (River Fork)    Memoirs of Class and Consumption

Chair: Nancy Cook, University of Montana

Shay Casey, Idaho State University: “The Original versus the Ordinary: Two Methods of Authentic Western Presentation as seen in No Life for a Lady and The Life of an Ordinary Woman
Nancy Cook, University of Montana: “Negotiating Class Difference in the American West: Wickenburg, AZ c. 1965”
Paul Bogard, University of Nevada, Reno: “Little House in the Biggest Little City”

10F (Clearwater)      “Living in Your Own Private Idaho”: Modernism/Postmodernism in Modernity’s Hinterlands

Chair: Robert Bennett, Montana State University

Rob Wallace, University of California, Santa Barbara: “‘Born in a Half Savage Country’: Ezra Pound and the West”
Jeffrey Hostetler, Montana State University: “Ben Franklin, Richard Brautigan, and the Death of Nature by Dissection”
Robert Bennett, Montana State University: “‘Underground like a wild potato’:  Napoleon Dynamite’s Red-State Blues”

Saturday 10:30–11:30 (Evergreen)                 WLA Business Meeting

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