The Newberry Seminar in American Literature

Midwest MS Conroy Bx.4, Fl.#189, Letter to Gladys, Feb.20, 1961

Letter from Gwendolyn Brooks to Gladys Conroy. Midwest MS Conroy Bx.4, Fl.#189, Letter to Gladys, Feb.20, 1961

Seminar sessions are held on Thursdays from 5–7 pm at the Newberry, 60 West Walton Street, Chicago, Illinois.

This seminar, which debuted in 2013, provides a forum for works in progress that explore the history of American Literature. It does so at a moment when the field’s central concepts – of historicism as a mode of literary study, of national literatures, of the distinctiveness of the literary – are under some pressure. We are particularly interested in writing that in some way exemplifies, responds to, or significantly acknowledges this pressure, while at the same time engaging specific literary or critical texts.

The seminar is sponsored by the Department of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the Department of English
Language and Literature at the University of Chicago.

Walter Benn Michaels, University of Ilinois at Chicago and Kenneth Warren, University of Chicago are the coordinators for the 2014-2015 seminar.

Each year, the seminar accepts proposals for papers from March until May 1. To propose a paper, please review our proposal instructions and submit all materials via webform.

To attend, please read our Registration Information. View our flyer for the complete schedule in PDF form.

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Seminar Schedule 2014-2015

Thursday, September 25, 2014
American Literature Seminar
“Institutional Charisma” Günter Leypoldt, Universität Heidelberg
Thursday, October 23, 2014
American Literature Seminar
“Survival Skills, or, Work and Plague” Theodore Martin, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee
Thursday, November 20, 2014
American Literature Seminar
“Marianne Moore, Gertrude Stein, and the Eyewitness Problem” Rachel Galvin, Johns Hopkins University
Thursday, January 29, 2015
American Literature Seminar
“The Squared City” Jesús Costantino, University of Notre Dame
Thursday, February 26, 2015
American Literature Seminar
“A Theatre and a Battleground: Professions of Childhood in New York of the 1940s” Sean McCann, Wesleyan University
Thursday, March 19, 2015
American Literature Seminar
“Walden’s Carbon Footprint: People, Plants, Animals, and Machines in the Making of an Environmental Classic” Eric Slauter, University of Chicago
Thursday, April 23, 2015
American Literature Seminar
“White City, Black Metropolis” Liesl Olson, Newberry Library