CFP -- ALA 2018 (May 24-27, 2018)

deadline for submissions: 
January 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Mary E. Wilkins Freeman Society
contact email: 

The Mary E. Wilkins Freeman Society will sponsor two sessions at the American Literature Association Conference at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco (May 24-27, 2018). Please see the topics below and send 250-word abstracts and brief vitae to Program Chair Myrto Drizou (mdrizou@valdosta.edu) by January 15, 2018.

Session 1: Mary E. Wilkins Freeman and Race

Though she is often labeled as a New England regionalist, Mary E. Wilkins Freeman is becoming increasingly recognized as an author who has engaged with a range of geographical contexts, generic conventions, and sociopolitical discourses. Scholars have widely discussed her challenging representations of gender, particularly in the context of turn-of-the-century ideas about marriage, economy, social class, and material culture. Although Freeman is radical in her representations of gender, she is often silent on issues of race. For instance, her historical romance The Heart’s Highway (1900), offers conventional, exoticizing descriptions of black subjects in a 17th-century Virginia plantation. This panel will include papers that explore the discussion of race (or lack thereof) in any aspect of Mary E. Wilkins Freeman’s work, including her children’s stories, Gothic fiction, novels, and plays. Comparative studies with her contemporary (as well as earlier and later) authors are welcome.

Session 2: Open Topic

This session invites proposals for presentations concerned with any aspect of Freeman’s life and oeuvre. Discussions (and examples) of teaching Freeman’s works are particularly welcome.

For more information about the conference, please consult the ALA website at www.americanliterature.org.