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Willa Cather Foundation - Red Cloud Nebraska (NE)
 
 
 

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Conferences and Calls for Proposals

Conferences and Calls for Proposals

The Willa Cather Foundation hosts an annual Spring Conference in Red Cloud, Nebraska, where Cather scholars, general readers, and those interested in the arts gather to celebrate Nebraska's cultural heritage. Held the first weekend in June, Spring Conference is a great time to tour Cather's Red Cloud, hike the Willa Cather Memorial Prairie, enjoy a live performance in the Red Cloud Opera House, and learn even more about Cather's life and writing.

The WCF also organizes a biennial International Seminar and periodic symposia in locations around the country—and the world!—that were important to Willa Cather. Colleagues from around the globe, at all professional levels, and from a number of disciplines gather to share their research related to the seminar theme, and Cather scholars generate new ideas and collaborations for future projects. Though a scholarly conference, plenty of activities—guided tours, exhibitions, and performances—are included for the Cather enthusiast and general reader.

In addition to our own conferences, a number of major literary and humanities conferences feature panels and paper sessions related to Cather scholarship. We are happy to share Calls for Proposals for those panels here, alongside our own, as well as funding opportunities related to those conferences.

Nebraska Cather Collaborative Research Grants for Willa Cather Scholarship (2021)

Nebraska Cather Collaborative Research Grants for Willa Cather Scholarship (2021)
Nebraska Cather Collaborative Research Grants for Willa Cather Scholarship (2021)

Nebraska Cather Collaborative Research Grants for Willa Cather Scholarship 2021

The Cather Project of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) English Department, in cooperation with the Cather Archive of the UNL Libraries and the National Willa Cather Center (NWCC) in Red Cloud, announces the availability of research grants for visiting scholars. These grants provide financial support for scholars to travel to and reside in Nebraska for one to four weeks to conduct research on Willa Cather in UNL Archives and Special Collections and in the Archive of the NWCC. Scholars from advanced doctoral students through senior faculty are invited to apply (note the change from the previous Woodress Scholars research grants program).

Proposed projects should reflect the need to conduct research in UNL Archives and Special Collections, although researchers are also encouraged to conduct research at the NWCC and to experience Cather’s Nebraska hometown during their residence. Red Cloud is 2 ½ hours from Lincoln by car. Successful applicants will be awarded $1,000 per week for up to four weeks. The deadline for submission of materials is DECEMBER 1, 2020, and we will inform successful applicants by FEBRUARY 1, 2021. Weeks in residence, which need not be consecutive, should fall between March 1, 2021 and February 28, 2022. Note, however, that considering the contingencies of the pandemic, grant funds will be held in reserve and may be taken up later if archives access and safe travel are not available during this period.

The Cather Project will assist successful applicants with advice about travel and lodging. When successful applicants are in residence, they will receive advice and guidance from scholars associated with the Cather Project and the Cather Archive and, depending on schedule and availability, have the opportunity to present their work in progress.

The Cather Project (https://www.unl.edu/english/cather-project) produces the Willa Cather Scholarly Edition and Cather Studies, both published by the University of Nebraska Press. The Cather Archive (https://cather.unl.edu) is a digital project dedicated to study of Willa Cather's life and writings and the home of The Complete Letters of Willa Cather. The Archives and Special Collections of the UNL Libraries holds the largest collection of letters from and to Cather; edited typescripts and manuscripts of her works; multiple editions of her works; and many other Cather-associated materials. For more on these collections, see the finding aids for the various Cather-related collections https://libraries.unl.edu/cather-collections. The growing archive of the National Willa Cather Center includes books, letters, photographs, and personal items. Information about these collections can be accessed here: https://www.willacather.org/learn/collections-and-archives-national-willa-cather-center

These grants are funded by the Willa Cather Fund and the Roberta and James Woodress Fund, both of which are administered by the University of Nebraska Foundation. When schedule and availability permits, the NWCC will provide in-kind support in the form of housing in Red Cloud.

To apply, please send to Beth Burke (eburke3@unl.edu), Cather Project Specialist, as e-mail attachments the following items:

• your c.v. (please limit to 2 pages)

• an application statement of no more than 3 pages describing your proposed research project and the importance of materials and resources at UNL and the NWCC to your project (please be specific).

In addition, a professional letter of recommendation should be sent directly by your recommender to Beth Burke (eburke3@unl.edu). The letter should be specific to the fellowship and proposed project rather than a general letter of recommendation (such as a letter from job placement dossier).

Please address questions about these grants to Professor Melissa J. Homestead, Director of the Cather Project (mhomestead2@unl.edu).

American Literature Association Annual Conference 2020

American Literature Association Annual Conference 2020
American Literature Association Annual Conference 2020

The Willa Cather Foundation is pleased to sponsor two panels at the upcoming 2020 American Literature Association Annual Conference, to be held San Diego, California, May 21-24, 2020. This year's panels will be organized around two central topics:

"Cather and Her Readers"

In this panel, we invite participants to explore Cather’s readers and the reception of her works. Topics might include, but are not limited to:

  • the use of new archives and digital technologies to shed light on Cather’s readers;
  • tensions between middlebrow and highbrow readers in Cather’s reception;
  • Cather’s reception among diverse populations (gender, race, sexuality, economic status, and / or nationality);
  • Cather’s relevance to 21st century readers.

“Willa Cather and the 1920s”

The 1920s mark the most productive decade of Willa Cather’s career. In this panel, we invite participants to examine Cather’s works of the 1920s and their relationship to larger literary, social, and cultural issues of the decade. Topics might include, but are not limited to:

  • explorations of Cather’s first publication of the 1920s, the short story collection Youth and the Bright Medusa;
  • Cather’s relationship to various places in the 1920s;
  • connections between Cather’s writing and other writers of the 1920s;
  • studies of Cather in light of 1920s aesthetics, culture, economics, and / or history.

Please send 300 word proposals for individual papers and a brief CV to Kelsey Squire (squirekelsey@gmail.com) by January 3, 2020. Include any AV requests. 

The Willa Cather Foundation is pleased to announce that one travel scholarship for graduate students is available. Please see our scholarship page for application instructions.

Educators Scholarship

Educators Scholarship
Educators Scholarship

To advance our educational mission, the Willa Cather Foundation created the Educators Scholarship in 2016. In partnership with the Thistlewood Foundation, we will award two teachers or administrators complementary registrations to the Willa Cather Spring Conference and $500 travel grants to offset the cost of travel and lodging. This program allows educators to experience the Cather historic sites, the cultural opportunities, the growing body Cather scholarship, and the camaraderie that our Spring Conference offers. It is our sincere hope that these awards will facilitate a dynamic exchange of ideas between Cather researchers and educators, upon whom we rely for our next generation of Cather readers. 

To apply for the Educators Scholarship, please complete the application that follows. Questions may be directed to education director Tracy Tucker, at 402-746-2653 or ttucker@willacather.org. The application deadline is March 15 annually, and recipients will be notified by March 30.

Brandeis Novel Symposium 2020 (Closed)

Brandeis Novel Symposium 2020 (Closed)
Brandeis Novel Symposium 2020 (Closed)

CFP: Brandeis Novel Symposium

Friday April 24, 2020
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

Deadline for submissions: November 1, 2019

The fourth annual Brandeis Novel Symposium examines the genre’s relation to issues of settler colonialism, land, and indigeneity. The focal text is Willa Cather’s The Professor’s House (1925). As in previous years, we invite papers that explore these larger questions from diverse theoretical, historical and formal angles, taking Cather’s novel either as focus or simply as a point of departure.

The following links will take you to programs for past Brandeis Novel Symposia: 2019, 2018, and 2017.

Please send abstracts of 150-250 words by November 1 to plotz@brandeis.edu. Decisions by November 20.

17th International Willa Cather Seminar (Closed)

17th International Willa Cather Seminar (Closed)
17th International Willa Cather Seminar (Closed)

17th International Willa Cather Seminar

“Unsettling Cather: Differences and Dislocations”

June 17–21, 2019 | Shenandoah University, Winchester, Virginia

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The 17th International Willa Cather Seminar will be held in the lush, complex place of Cather’s Virginia birth and first nine years. When she was born here in 1873, Cather’s family had already been in Virginia since the 1730s. Here, as observant daughter of a white family, she first encountered differences and dislocations that remained lively, productive, and sometimes deeply troubling sites of tension and energy in her writings. In this Seminar, we do not intend to root conversation solely in this particular locale. Instead, we hope to un-root or unsettle it through attention to such differences and dislocations as they marked Cather’s life and work, beginning in her undergraduate stories and culminating in her late-life return to Virginia in her last novel, Sapphira and the Slave Girl.

Highlights of the Seminar include:

Siobhan Somerville, keynote speaker
Author of Queering the Color Line: Race and the Invention of Homosexuality in American Culture and professor of English, African American Studies, and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois

Tours of Cather sites, including Willow Shade, her first childhood home

A day in Washington, D.C., with opportunities to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture, as well as other museums relevant to Cather’s writing

As always, the Seminar welcomes papers taking a broad array of approaches to Cather’s life and work. We especially invite fresh takes on the many forms of difference and the many moments of dislocation that her readers encounter. We aim to jumpstart a conversation that has been somewhat muted in Cather studies in recent years and to invite new voices and new perspectives into the discussion.

  • Differences of sex, gender, race, ethnicity, class, region, and nationality are everywhere in Cather’s cosmopolitan fictional world. How do they signify? How do they intersect? How are they navigated? What is at stake in the writer’s explorations of difference?

  • Cather’s characters are often on the move. Relocation tends to produce a sense of dislocation that may be destabilizing and disorienting. What are the social and psychic resonances of dislocation in Cather’s writing?

  • How has expanded access to Cather’s letters unsettled understandings of her life? How does hearing Cather’s unmediated epistolary voice (rather than the cautious, mediated voice of paraphrase) alter the sound or our sense of that voice?

Program Directors:

Marilee Lindemann, University of Maryland
Ann Romines, George Washington University, emerita

Site Director:

John Jacobs, Shenandoah University, emeritus

Please send 500-word proposals of individual papers to the Willa Cather Foundation’s education director, Tracy Tucker, at ttucker@WillaCather.org, by February 20, 2019. If your paper is accepted, you will be notified by March 20, 2019. Papers should be 8-10 pages in length (20 minutes when read). The conference organizers also welcome proposals for roundtable panels and other formats; proposals for such alternate formats should be submitted no later than February 1, 2019. Graduate students will be welcomed to the Seminar and those whose proposals are accepted may apply for funding through the Willa Cather Foundation.

American Literature Association Fall 2018 Symposium (CLOSED)

American Literature Association Fall 2018 Symposium (CLOSED)
American Literature Association Fall 2018 Symposium (CLOSED)

Sights and Sites: Vision and Place in American Literature

November 1-3, 2018

Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe
828 Paseo de Peralta Santa Fe, NM 87501

Conference Director: Alfred Bendixen, Princeton University

Keynote Speaker: Karen Kilcup, University of North Carolina, at Greensboro

The Willa Cather Foundation seeks proposals for papers exploring Willa Cather and the American Southwest. While Cather’s fascination with the Southwest is most salient in The Song of the Lark, The Professor’s House, and Death Comes for the Archbishop, we welcome proposals on new approaches and different perspectives of Cather’s vision of the American landscape more broadly. Topics include, but are not limited to:

 Gender, spirituality, myth, and race

 Cather’s examination of migration and agrarianism

 Environmentalism and ecology in Cather’s work

 Visual elements of the southwest

 The Spanish presence in U.S. history

 The colonial context, expansionism, nationalism, and immigration

 New approaches to teaching Cather in the current political climate

 The role of the body in Cather’s fiction

Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words to charmion.gustke@belmont.edu by September 3. For full details, see the attached CFP.

Cather Symposium in Limavady, Northern Ireland (CLOSED)

Cather Symposium in Limavady, Northern Ireland (CLOSED)
Cather Symposium in Limavady, Northern Ireland (CLOSED)

Cather Symposium: Ireland

June 28–July 1, 2018
Limavady and Derry, Northern Ireland

REGISTER ONLINE!

Hosted by Ulster University and the Roe Valley Arts and Cultural Centre, and
Sponsored by the Willa Cather Foundation and the University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Set in the ancestral home of the Cather family, and taking place during the centennial of My Ántonia, the symposium will explore themes deeply resonant in Willa Cather’s life and work (including but not restricted to):

• migration and immigration;

• family legacy and inheritance;

• gender and language;

• and religious identity.

The symposium brings together established and new Cather scholars with Irish scholars and the local community. Visits to Cather family sites, along with social events involving Irish music and storytelling, will be part of the program. The Roe Valley area offers sublime coastal cliffs, mountains and ancient forests, historic ruins and landed estates. Tours of the Giants Causeway and the Walled City of Derry will complete the weekend.

Directors: Willa Murphy, Ulster University, and Aaron Callan, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council

Please send abstracts of up to 350 words to the Willa Cather Foundation’s education director, Tracy Tucker, at ttucker@willacather.org by 15 February 2018.