Food and the American Dream/New Deadline: 2.13.23

deadline for submissions: 
February 13, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
Jeff Birkenstein & Robert Hauhart/Saint Martin's University

CFP: Food and the American Dream

Proposals due February 13, 2023


Overview. This is a call for papers that address two current popular areas of research and publication: Food Studies and studies of the American Dream. Interest in Food Studies from various disciplines has skyrocketed in popularity and importance across multiple fields in the last ten/fifteen years. Likewise, studies of the American Dream, after a relatively quiet dormancy from the early 1970s to the millennia, have had a noteworthy resurgence. Our Call asks you to propose essay ideas that unite these two areas of contemporary scholarship. Our plan is to publish them with a respected press. Currently, we have an expression of interest from a highly regarded University press with whom we have a “first look” agreement.


Who We Are. We are both scholars of the American Dream: Jeff principally studies literature and popular (food) culture and publishes literary essays and collections. Robert is a sociologist by training, and while he has been publishing within sociology on the American Dream, he has also been actively publishing literary essays as well as co-editing literary collections (primarily with Jeff).


We tell you this because our principal Call for Papers site is on UPenn CFP listserv (, and while we will be happy to receive and review proposed literary essays that address the intersection of food and the American Dream in (American or world) literature, we do not envision the collection as limited to literary essays. Indeed, we invite, and will welcome, strong proposals from any social scientific, humanities, or arts and music discipline, in addition to proposals from literature.

Interested? What you need to do: Draft a 250-500-word proposal for an essay that will ultimately be between 4,500 - 6,000 words in length. Send your proposal along with your c.v. to both Robert and Jeff at:


Do so by February 13, 2023. You will receive a notice of receipt. Questions? Write us at the above email addresses. You will receive a prompt reply.


Robert C. Hauhart, Ph.D., J.D., is a professor in the Department of Society and Social Justice at Saint Martin’s University, Lacey, WA. He is the author or co-editor of eight books, including most recently: The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream, Volume I (2021) (with Mitja Sardoc); Connections and Influence in the Russian and American Short Story (Lexington Books, 2021) (with Jeff Birkenstein); The Lonely Quest (Routledge, 2018); and Seeking the American Dream (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). Robert was the recipient of a Fulbright Scholar Award to Slovenia in 2018-19 and retains an active association with the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts as a Visiting Research Fellow.


Jeff Birkenstein, Ph.D., is a Professor of English at Saint Martin’s University (Lacey, Washington) His major interests lie in the short story (American, world, and the short story sequence) as well as food and cultural criticism.  He has assembled seven co-edited collection of essays: Reframing 9/11: Film, Popular Culture and the “War on Terror” (Continuum, 2010) and The Cinema of Terry Gilliam: It’s a Mad World (Columbia University Press/Wallflower, 2013), with Anna Froula of East Carolina University and Karen Randell of Nottingham Trent University (UK), retired; and, American Writers in Exile and Social Justice and American Literature (both with Salem Press/Grey House, 2015 and 2017, respectively), and European Writers in Exile and Connections and Influence in the Russian and American Short Story, (both with Lexington Press, 2018 and 2021, respectively), all with Robert C. Hauhart of Saint Martin’s University, as well as Classroom on the Road: Designing, Teaching, and Theorizing Out-of-the-Box Faculty-Led Student Travel (Lexington Books, 2020) with Irina Gendelman of Saint Martin’s University. Birkenstein teaches a range of classes, from Freshman Seminar and Composition to The Short Story, Food & Fiction, and “Chasing the American Dream” and “Narratives from the Aftermath of 9/11.”  He received his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky in 2003; he has a second MA in Teaching English as a Second/Other Language. He is a Fulbright Scholar (Petrozavodsk State University, Russia, 2013). He has eaten scorpions in Beijing, but could not bring himself to eat the tarantulas fried in garlic and oil in Cambodia, though he sort of regrets it.