Thursday, September 11, 2008

CFP: Edith Wharton Panels at ALA 2009

Call for Papers: ALA 2009

The Edith Wharton Society will sponsor two panels at the American Literature Association Conference in Boston, MA, on 21-24 May 2009.

1. After Innocence: Late Edith Wharton

In his influential essay, "Justice to Edith Wharton", Edmund Wilson casually wrote off Wharton's writing after The Age of Innocence, concluding that the more "commonplace work of her later years had had the effect of dulling the reputation of her earlier and more serious work." This panel re-examines the final period of Wharton's career, and its place in any assessment of the writer's oeuvre. Possible topics might include: Wharton and her critics; the late short stories; versions of her memoirs; correspondence; the critical writings; public image; the writer's responses to contemporary fiction; Wharton and the Depression; the Vance Weston novels; The Buccaneers; Wharton's legacy. All approaches welcome. Please submit 250 word paper proposals and brief biographical statement by 15 January 2009 to Laura Rattray at:

2. New Perspectives on the Novel of Manners
Since James W. Tuttleton wrote The Novel of Manners in America in 1972, scholars have “reclaimed” a massive amount of literature by writers who were marginalized though canon formation. So too have critical perspectives and methodologies broadened the study of literature. Additionally, many contemporary popular texts are now taught in classrooms. This panel seeks to use Edith Wharton, as a comparative point from which to examine other writers, as novelists of manners. Submissions may include modern or popular writers or any new treatments of canonical writers. Please submit 250-300 word proposals and a brief biographical statement by 15 January 2009 to Margaret Murray at