In October 1845, a short-lived New York magazine called the Aristidean published a review of Edgar Allan Poe’s story collection Tales. The article spouted praise like a dancing fountain. Poe’s detective story “The Gold-Bug” “perfectly succeeded in his perfect aim.” “The Fall of the House of Usher” was “grand and impressive.” “Murders in the Rue Morgue” was marked by “profound and searching analysis.”
And, overall, Poe wielded the kind of literary power that “can only be possessed by a man of high genius,” according to the anonymous reviewer—who was almost certainly Edgar Allan Poe himself.
Poe’s reputation as a major American writer is unassailable. He invented the modern detective story, successfully transported the gothic tale across the Atlantic, and wrote classic dark poems like “The Raven,” “Annabel Lee,” and “The Bells.” But, during Poe’s lifetime, such high points were intermittent, hard-fought, and rarely financial successes. More often, Poe made his living by toiling at now-forgotten magazines like the Southern Literary Messenger, Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine, and Graham’s Magazine.
This struggle to make art amid his struggles—he was an orphan, an alcoholic, an academic bust at the University of Virginia and West Point, and often on the run from creditors—is the crux of the American Masters documentary Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive, which aired on PBS October 30. Through dramatic readings of Poe’s work and a moody performance of Poe himself by Denis O’Hare, the film captures an author scrabbling… [Read More]
The C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience and the John Carter Brown Library invite applications for the Hodson Trust-John Carter Brown Fellowship, a unique research and writing fellowship. The deadline for applications for the 2015-2016 Hodson-Brown Fellowship is March 15, 2015.
The Hodson Trust – John Carter Brown Fellowship supports academics, independent scholars, writers, filmmakers, novelists and artists working on significant projects relating to the literature, history, culture, or art of the Americas before 1830.
Fellowship award: $20,000 plus housing and university privileges
Duration: two months of research in Providence, RI (any time between September and May) and two months of writing in Chestertown, Md. (any time between May and August)
Residence: In Providence, a private room in the John Carter Brown Library’s Fellows’ Residence; in Chestertown, exclusive occupancy of a restored circa-1735 house.
Work space: In Providence, space in the John Carter Brown Library; in Chestertown, a private office in the circa-1745 waterfront Custom House, home of the Starr Center
Explore a sampling of careers open to those who want to be historians or use historical training directly in their jobs. The focus will be public or applied history, but the discussions will include more specific areas, such as museum studies, historic preservation, archives, policy, civic engagement, and business.
Undergraduate (and graduate) students should leave inspired and with information about graduate school, clear ideas about job possibilities that build off of their interests in history, as well as lists of resources and personal contacts they can call upon in considering their future. Besides specific history/public history career information, we will offer fresh perspectives on the many ways in which professional historians, curators, preservationists, cultural resource managers, archivists, educators, government agencies, and small businesses work together. There will also be two optional behind-the-scenes tours offered.
Thanks to support from the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute, the IU New Currents program, and several campus offices and departments as well as Indiana Humanities (the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities), the Frederick Douglass Papers will sponsor a gathering of scholars, teachers, students, and the general public to examine the historical and literary significance of Douglass’s novella, “The Heroic Slave” (1853), on our campus in October.
In preparation for this symposium several members of the Douglass Papers staff have been engaged in a small piece of literary detective work. Douglass’s “Heroic Slave” was originally published as a contribution to the short “gift book” entitled Autographs for Freedom, published in Boston by the firm of John P. Jewitt. Besides Douglass, this collection of essays, poems, and short fiction features many well-known mid-nineteenth century writers and political and reform leaders including Harriet Beecher Stowe, Charles Sumner, Horace Greeley, John G. Whittier, and Caroline Dall.
Among the diverse collection of black and white, male and female, American and British contributors to Autographs is the writer Annie Parker who published a poem “Story Telling” and the separate story, “Passages in the Life of a Slave Woman.” In the latter, the narrator, a slave woman, recounts the tragic outcome of a master/slave sexual relationship. In the past few decades this piece has been anthologized several times as one of the earliest works of fiction by an African American author. But who was Annie Parker? None of the anthologies or scholars writing about the story have ever been able to supply any biographical details about her.
Project assistant editor Jeffrey Duvall, graduate research assistant Rebecca Pattillo, and I have been at work trying to answer that question this summer. Frederick Douglass’s own Rochester-published newspaper contains a piece under Parker’s byline in the early 1850s and two other short journalistic pieces by her appear in a Geneva, New York-based temperance newspaper in that same era. Then the trail gets cold, very cold.
Genealogical sources turn up a few possible “Annie Parkers” in the upstate New York region but none of them has any known connection to the antislavery movement and all were white. Perhaps Annie Parker was not a runaway slave as others have speculated. This raises the possibility that “Annie Parker” was a pen name–but whose?
The most intriguing possibility is that Parker is none other than Harriet Jacobs, the author of the famous 1859 autobiography of her horrifyingly abusive career as a South Carolina slave. Jacobs had escaped slavery in the early 1840s and worked as a maid for the Massachusetts journalist Nathaniel Parker Willis, who is referred to twice obtusely in Parker’s own writings. In 1849-50, two years before the publication of the Autographs, Jacobs lived in Rochester and actually worked in the same building where Douglass edited his newspaper. While Jacobs had returned to working for Willis in Massachusetts by the time Autographs was compiled, those earlier connections might have led the gift book’s editor, Julia Griffiths, to have solicited a piece by Jacobs, although no evidence of such a solicitation has yet been found. The same year, Harriet Beecher Stowe also asked Jacobs to write a summary of her slave experiences to include in her Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a response to critics of her condemnation of slave mistreatment in her earlier novel. The Douglass staff is exploring whether Jacobs might have wanted to tell her personal story herself in a safer fictional form in the pages of Autographs.
The product of this research will just be a small part of the upcoming symposium, where Douglass papers staff will be joined by seven widely-published scholars from several disciplines to explore various contexts of “the Heroic Slave.” The event is free and open to the public and we hope will be well-attended by many persons from the central Indiana community interested in Frederick Douglass and his campaign against slavery.
The Indiana Association of Historians (IAH) invites papers and panel proposals for its annual meeting to be held on the campus of IUPUI in Indianapolis, Indiana on February 28, 2015.
In the year 2015 we focus on civil rights, not only in the context of United States history, but also from a global view of the struggle for equal rights. Possible “anniversary” topics suggested by the year 2015 include the Battle of Waterloo, the Battle of New Orleans, the Congress of Vienna, the end of the Civil War, the passage of the 13th amendment, World War I, the creation of the United Nations (leading to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights), the end of World War II, and the passage of the Voting Rights Act.
While papers and panels from all fields and related to all topics of history are welcomed, the program committee is particularly interested in proposals that focus on civil rights, not only in the context of United States history, but also from a global view of the struggle for equal rights. Possible “anniversary” topics suggested by the year 2015 include the Battle of Waterloo, the Battle of New Orleans, the Congress of Vienna, the end of the Civil War, the passage of the 13th amendment, World War I, the creation of the United Nations (leading to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights), the end of World War II, and the passage of the Voting Rights Act. Events leading up to these milestones and reaction to them are also encouraged as the basis of papers.
The committee also welcomes submissions in the fields of K-12 history education and public history. Academic, public, and independent historians, as well as graduate students, are eligible to present papers. All presenters must be present at the conference.
Conference papers (approximately 10 pages/2,500 words) may be based on original research, synthesis of scholarship, or participant experience. Sessions will consist of two or three papers with comments.
To submit a proposal for a paper and/or session,send a one-page proposal for each presentation and a one-page c.v. Panel proposals should include a one-page proposal, which specifies the topic each participant will discuss, and a one-page c.v. per participant. The deadline for submitting paper and/or session proposals is November 10, 2014. E-mail submissions are encouraged and will be accepted until the deadline.
Submit proposals to:
IAH Program 2015
c/o IAH president, Nancy Conner
1500 N. Delaware Street,Indianapolis,IN 46202
Brian Dirck, Professor of History, Anderson University, will provide the keynote address. His first book, Lincoln and Davis: Imagining America,1809-1865, offered a comparative analysis of the two Civil War presidents’ lives and careers. He has since focused most of his attention on Abraham Lincoln. His publications include Lincoln the Lawyer, an overview of Lincoln’s legal career that was awarded the Benjamin Barondess Award from the New York Civil War Roundtable for the best book published on Abraham Lincoln in 2007. In 2012 he published Lincoln and the Constitution as part of the Concise Lincoln Library Series and Lincoln and White America, an analysis of Lincoln’s views concerning white supremacy and racism.
Founded in 1980, the IAH is the statewide organization of historians with a mission to furnish opportunities for persons within the state’s historical community to become acquainted, to share research and ideas, to promote and strengthen the historical profession, and to encourage the pursuit of history by the general public. IAH members include historians who live or work in Indiana and specialize in various fields of history, not just Indiana history. Visit their website for membership information.
INDIANAPOLIS — The latest issue of a leading scholarly journal about African American history includes the publication of several papers presented during an Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis conference on the life and work of Frederick Douglass.
IUPUI professor John R. Kaufman-McKivigan served as guest editor for “Rediscovering the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass,” a special edition of the Journal of African American History.
The Association for the Study of African American Life and History recently announced the publication of “Rediscovering the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass” as the Winter/Spring 2014 volume of the association’s Journal of African American History.
Started in 1916 as the Journal of Negro History by Carter G. Woodson — who founded the Association for the Study of African American Life and History and the observance of what is now known as Black History Month — the Journal of African American History is a peer-reviewed quarterly. The journal is considered the “jewel” of the association and the premier publication in its field.
“I am very pleased that the Journal of African American History has printed the papers delivered at a stimulating symposium held on our campus in October 2012,” Kaufman-McKivigan said. “It is my hope that these highly insightful essays will draw attention to this often overlooked gem of an autobiography by Douglass.”
Kaufman-McKivigan, the Mary O’Brien Gibson Professor of United States History in the Indiana University School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, is project director and editor of the Frederick Douglass Papers Edition, one of four scholarly publications housed in the Institute for American Thought, also part of the School of Liberal Arts. He specializes in antebellum America, Civil War studies, American ethnic history and American working-class history.
According to an Association for the Study of African American Life and History press release, the journal contributors are leading historians of 19th-century U.S. and African American history who offer insightful and well-documented analyses of “Life and Times of Frederick Douglass,” one of three autobiographical works.
A runaway slave turned abolitionist in antebellum America, Douglass became an influential writer and thinker of the Civil War and Reconstruction periods. The 2012 IUPUI conference celebrated the publication of the Frederick Douglass Papers’ first scholarly edition of Douglass’ final autobiography.
The special journal issue includes one article written by Kaufman-McKivigan, “Stalwart Douglass: ‘Life and Times’ as Political Manifesto.” He also wrote the journal’s introduction.
In addition to chapters on the Douglass autobiography, the special issue includes about 20 book reviews, as well as three essay reviews such as “12 Years a Slave: Narrative, History and Film.”
The Winter-Spring 2014 issue is available for purchase in hard copy and for course use through association publications director Karen May at email@example.com. A digital version soon will be available through ISTOR Current Journals.
Over the past several years, northeastern Nigeria has been wracked by violence promulgated by a group of extremists whose stated aim is to topple the status quo and establish a universal caliphate based on Islamic law. Thousands have died, and at least a million left homeless since the carnage began. Border areas in neighboring countries, including Cameroon, have been touched by the climate of terror, military reaction, and the flight of refugees.
Since 1990, Dr. Ellen Einterz, an IU graduate, has lived on the border between Cameroon and Nigeria’s Borno State. She is the Director of the Kolofata District Hospital and Chief Medical Officer for the Kolofata Health District. In her talk, she will briefly explore the conflict in its historical and present day context and provide an account of her recent personal experience as a physician in the exceptionally poor corner of Africa being rocked by this tragedy.
This lecture is presented by Medical Humanities & Health Studies and the IUPUI Global Health Student Interest Group and generous support from The IUPUI Office of International Affairs, The Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health, and the Africana Studies Program in the School of Liberal Arts.
Noted historian and National Endowment for the Humanities medal recipient Mark Noll will deliver a public talk Thursday, Aug. 7, as part of the IUPUI Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture’s The Bible and American Life Conference.
Noll will present “The Bible Then and Now” at 7:30 p.m. at Christ Church Cathedral, 125 Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis. Registration is not required for this keynote talk, which is open to the entire Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis campus as well as the general public.
Noll is the Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame. His numerous books include “The New Shape of World Christianity: How American Experience Reflects Global Faith” (InterVarsity Press, 2009); “God and Race in American Politics: A Short History” (Princeton University Press, 2008); and “The Civil War as a Theological Crisis” (University of North Carolina Press, 2006). He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; in 2006 he received the National Endowment for the Humanities medal at a White House ceremony.
The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture is part of the Indiana University School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI. The Bible and American Life Conference, taking place Wednesday through Friday at Sheraton Indianapolis City Centre, is the second stage of a project that seeks to provide the first large-scale investigation of the Bible in American life.
The Huntington, an independent research center with holdings in British and American history, literature, art history, and the history of science and medicine, maintains a collection of manuscripts that date from the eleventh century up to the present. This collection includes 7 million manuscripts, 420,000 rare books, 275,000 reference works, and 1.3 million photographs, prints, and ephemera. The Burndy Library consists of some 67,000 rare books and reference volumes in the history of science and technology, as well as an important collection of scientific instruments. Special collections include those on the Middle Ages, Renaissance, 19th- and 20th-century literature, British drama, Colonial America, American Civil War, Western America, and California. The Art Collections contain notable British and American paintings, fine prints, photographs, and an art reference library. In the library of the Botanical Gardens is a broad collection of reference works in botany, horticulture, and gardening.
These fellowships derive from a variety of funding sources and have different terms. Recipients of all fellowships are expected to be in continuous residence at the Huntington and to participate in and make a contribution to its intellectual life. Applicants must have completed all requirements for the PhD by no later than November 15, 2014, and must be a United States citizen or foreign national with a minimum of three years U.S. residence. Applicants can apply for only a short-term or long-term award during this fellowship cycle. Applicants may also submit an application for a travel grant or exchange fellowship, but they must provide a separate application with distinct cover sheet and project description, as these awards are reviewed by a separate committee.
The Huntington Fellowships provides doctoral level scholars or graduate students who have reached the dissertation phase $3,000 per month for one to five months between June 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. The majority of these awards will be given to scholars working in the general holdings of the Library, though there are specialized fellowships available including the Francis Bacon Foundation Fellowships in Renaissance England; the Reese Fellowship in American Bibliography and the History of the Book in the Americas; the Trent R. Dames Fellowship in the History of Civil Engineering ; the Christopher Isherwood Foundation Fellowships; and the Francis J. Weber Research Fellowship in Roman Catholic History.
National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Fellowships
These fellowships provide $50,000 over a nine to twelve month fellowship between June 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016 for U.S. scholars who are pursuing scholarship in a field appropriate to the Huntington’s collections.
Travel Grants and Exchange Fellowships for Study in Great Britain
The Travel Grants and Exchange Fellowships provide for a U.S. based scholar who holds a PhD or equivalent or is a doctoral candidate at the dissertation stage travel to England, Scotland, or Wales between June 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. In addition to research that will be carried out in libraries or archives in Great Britain, the Huntington also offers exchange fellowships with Corpus Christi, Linacre, and Lincoln Colleges, Oxford; and with Trinity Hall, Cambridge.
Terms for the exchange fellowships and travel grants are as follows:
Linacre College, Oxford – A stipend of $3,000 is provided by the Huntington to the recipient of the fellowship before traveling to England, along with reimbursement for economy round-trip airfare. Accommodation is provided by the college with the stipulation that the fellowship must be taken up in July or August of 2015; the fellow is responsible for paying for the accommodation. The fellow must provide a written report on his or her experience.
Corpus Christi College/Lincoln College/Trinity Hall – Accommodation and hospitality is provided by the college, although the timing of the fellowship may be subject to the availability of housing options and to the rhythms of the academic year. The Huntington will reimburse the fellow for economy round-trip airfare before going to England. The fellow must provide a written report on his or her experience.
Travel Grants – The Huntington will reimburse the grantee for economy round-trip airfare before the trip. A stipend of $3,000 will be paid after the grantee submits a detailed report on the research conducted. The travel grants can be taken up as early as June 1, 2015, and no later than June 30, 2016.
Dana and David Dornsife Fellowship
This fellowship is for nine to twelve months with a stipend of $50,000 between June 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. This fellowship will support individuals who are pursuing scholarship in a field appropriate to the Huntington’s collections. Applicants must have completed all requirements for the PhD by no later than November 15, 2014.
Publication Grants (Author) Sponsored by Yale University, the Yale Center for British Art (YCBA), and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art – U.K., this grant provides up to £3,000GBP annually in order to cover costs which are the responsibility of the author and are personally expended by him/her. Eligible costs include specific photography and the production of images for their publication, acquisition of images, reproduction and copyright costs, or the production of graphics. Funds may not be used to cover publishers’ production costs or personal living expenses, travel, nor the support of research on the part of the applicant. Supported topics must have an historical perspective and pertain to topics in the realm of academic research and the dissemination of knowledge in the field of British art and architectural history from the medieval period to the present.
The Paul Mellon Centre, an educational charity, supports scholarly publications, in both printed and online form, within the remit of British art and architectural history, as well as books and catalogs of exhibitions or permanent collections of British fine and decorative arts and architecture. It does not offer fellowships and grants in the fields of archaeology, the current practice of architecture or the performing arts. It has no discretionary funds outside its stated program. Publication projects should be ready to go to press or appear online within two years from January 2015. The Centre does not make any retrospective awards for books already published nor will it accept applications for funding for books due to be published before the end of 2014.
Authors and Editors of books which have been accepted for publication for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art by Yale University Press are not eligible to apply for further support through the Publication Grant (Author) award scheme.
An application made by an author or editor will not disbar their publisher from applying for a Publication Grant (Publisher) for the production costs of the same project.