Publishing Power: Colonial Publication and American Identity

deadline for submissions: 
April 30, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
A proposed Colonial and Federal Literature panel for the South Atlantic Modern Language Association

2019 SAMLA Conference—Colonial and Federal Literature proposed panel


Atlanta, Georgia


November 8-10, 2019


“Languages: Power, Identity, Relationships”


In keeping with the SAMLA conference theme, “Languages: Power, Identity, Relationships,” this proposed panel welcomes proposals that explore constructions of, challenges to, and anxieties surrounding power in early America, before 1900, as well as the ways in which publication reinforced an iteration of an American identity or played a role in defining interpersonal or societal relationships.


Possible topics include but are not limited to:

  • Cultural work of sentimental novels, poems, pamphlets, tracts, periodicals, etc.
  • Construction and maintenance of an “American” identity through print
  • Publication and inclusion/exclusion
  • Access and gatekeeping surrounding publication
  • Acts of reading
  • Propaganda
  • Bestsellers
  • Banned books
  • Material qualities of buying or selling printed texts


Although we particularly encourage papers about the role of publication in colonial America, we welcome papers about any aspect of early American literature or culture before 1900.

Please submit a 250-work abstract and a short 3-5 sentence biography within a Microsoft Word document to Sam Campbell at by the deadline for April 30th, 2019.