Collection: American Literature After the "American Century"

full name / name of organization: 
Gioia Wods and Lance Rubin

We are looking for 2-3 essays to round out a collection entitled "American Literature After the 'American Century'". Broadly concieved, the essays we are looking for should explore the formal and thematic trends that are found in the ealy years of this new century. What characterizes American literary preoccupations after the 20th century, the so-called "American Century," as coined by Henry Luce in 1941? How have American writers incorporated or resisted social, cultural, and political events in the 21st century? How is American literature responding to what Fareed Zakaria has called "the post-American world" or what Davis S. Mason has called "the end of the American Century"?

While we already have essays that explore literary responses to the events of 9/11 and the so-called "war on terror," we are looking for essays that look more broadly at the literature of the early 21st century. We welcome essays that capture literature's response to the deepening sense that America's power and influence (militarily, ideologically and economically) are on the decline--or that American identity is losing its sense of exceptionalism--from both the political right and the left.

We are hoping to recieve interested proposals (an abstract of 250-400 words) fairly quickly, ideally by mid-June, 2009 (and completed essays of 20 pages by the end of July).

Please send them as Word attachments to both Gioia Woods and Lance Rubin at and