News and Events

Call for Proposals, Crossing the Line: Women of Anabaptist Traditions Encounter Boarders and Boundaries
Call for Proposals
Proposals due September 1, 2016

Crossing the Line: Women of Anabaptist Traditions Encounter Borders and Boundaries
June 22-25, 2017
Eastern Mennonite University
Harrisonburg, VA

It has been twenty years since the watershed conference The Quiet in the Land? Women of Anabaptist Traditions in Historical Perspective took place in 1995. New topics, approaches, and viewpoints invite further examination of the constructions of gendered experience within groups in the Anabaptist tradition. Crossing boundaries and borders can and should encompass a wide range of disciplines, approaches and topics, and we seek submissions from scholars, students, activists, and literary, performing and visual artists.

Crossing might entail traversing the lines between...

...public and private spaces and “the world”
...quietism and activism
...expected decorum/silence and speaking out
...gender constructions
...sexualities and gender self-identities
...race, ethnicity and class
...religious and theological belief systems
...nation states in the making of transnationalism
...disciplinary expression.

Conference participants are encouraged to think creatively about how Anabaptists, Mennonites, Amish and related groups have crossed and continue to cross lines, borders and boundaries.

Please submit a one-page CV and a 250-word abstract for a paper, a creative performance or presentation, or a complete panel/workshop session (with presenters indicated).

Proposals should be submitted to

The deadline for submitting proposals is September 1, 2016. The program committee will send out its decisions of acceptance by January 1, 2017.

Program Committee: Rachel Epp Buller, Bethel College; Marlene Epp, Conrad Grebel University College, University of Waterloo; Kerry Fast, Independent Scholar; Luann Good Gingrich, York University; Rachel Waltner Goossen,Washburn University; Julia Spicher Kasdorf, Pennsylvania State University; Kimberly Schmidt, Eastern Mennonite University; Jan Bender Shetler, Goshen College; Mary Sprunger, Eastern Mennonite University.

CFP: Current Trends in Graduate Historical Research Book Series
Attention Professors, Doctoral Candidates, and Graduate Students:

We are pleased to announce that Eastern Illinois University has partnered with Common Ground Publishing to publish the first in a yearly series of peer reviewed edited collections consisting of original historical research by graduate students. Applicants will be expected to participate in the peer review and will gain experience in the publishing process while competing for publication in a professional edited collection. We seek papers in all periods and fields of history and are particularly interested in original and innovative primary research projects that make demonstrated contributions to the relevant historiography.

Students in masters and doctoral programs are invited to submit proposals from between 5,000 to 10,000 words on any historical topic. Suggested proposals include prior class research papers, independent study papers, and thesis chapters. Please, no historiography essays or book reviews.

Individual proposals should include a 250 word abstract and a CV. Please submit proposals to no later than February 15, 2016.

Please address any inquiries to Authors will be notified on decisions for the next stage of peer review by March 16, 2016. Accepted authors can expect to revise their submissions based on the peer review from April to August 2016. Publication is expected in December 2016.

Rural Freaks: Marginalization, Liminality, and Queerness in Rural Spaces
Call for Papers
February 18, 2016 to February 20, 2016
Abstract Proposals of 50-150 words due by 15 January 2016

Arkansas State University is hosting this Conference February 18-20, 2016

The mission of the conference is to bring awareness to identities and people that exist outside the metropolis and how their lives are shaped by their relegation to marginalized spaces.

We are now calling for panels and proposals on Rural Queerness and Gender Studies. While submissions focused on the conference theme are encouraged, all student scholarship related to women, gender, and sexuality more broadly will be considered for inclusion. Acceptances will ultimately depend on the availability of compatible presentations to form coherent panels. The conference encourages interdisciplinary involvement as well as undergraduate submissions. The Rural Freaks Conference on Marginalization, Liminality, and Queerness within Rural Spaces is an interdisciplinary conference dedicated to portraying the work of graduate and undergraduate students on a number of different themes and topics which include, but are not limited to:

histories of rural queerness, marginal/fringe rhetorics, black queerness, race and rural space, queer anarchy, alienation/cultural isolation, queer geography, sexual anxiety, sexual politics in rural areas, queer technology, rural queerness in popular culture, transgender and LGBT discourse, queerness in the Bible Belt, queerness and spatiality, rhetoric of the body, psychosexual identification in rural spaces, feminist rhetorics and philosophy, queerness and art, biology of difference, comparative queer literatures, human rights, deviance, violence, law, business/workplace environments, military, and family.

That being said, if your research does not focus on queerness and rurality or gender studies and sexuality, but fits within the broad range of areas designated for the conference, we still encourage you to submit an abstract.

Faculty: Please forward this call to your colleagues, graduate students, and undergraduate students.

The submission deadline is January 15, 2016. Abstract proposals should be sent to Please include your name, school, classification, and major/area of emphasis within the email or document.

If you have any questions, please email

The conference will be held in Jonesboro, Arkansas, a city of 70,000, approximately 80 miles from Memphis International Airport. Visit the conference website at for directions, lodging, dining, and other information regarding Jonesboro along with updates regarding the details of the conference.

Contact Info:
Brennah Hutchison
Contact Email:

CFP Extension: Agricultural History Society 2016 Annual Meeting
The Agricultural History Society has extended the deadline for paper and panel submissions for the 2016 annual meeting at City College of New York and Briarcliff Manor. The extended deadline is December 4, 2015. For more information, see

Call for Proposals: Under Western Skies 2016
Under Western Skies 2016

Water: Events, Trends, Analysis

September 27-30, 2016
Mount Royal University
Calgary, Alberta, CANADA

Under Western Skies (UWS) is a biennial, interdisciplinary conference series on the environment. The fourth conference organizers invite prospective researchers, authors, artists, and presenters to consider submitting proposals for oral and poster presentations as well as workshops and panels.

The conference theme, Water: Events, Trends, Analysis, will be threaded through four inter- and transdisciplinary conference tracks:

(1) Policy, programs, planning, and management: trends and emerging topics in this track include history of water, integrated water management, business risk, stakeholder engagement, governance, jurisdictions and law, instruments and tools, science and technology, informing decision makers, innovative interventions and practices, monitoring and assessment, education, urban planning and design, and lessons learned.

(2) Safety, reliability, and sustainability: trends and emerging topics in this track include human rights to water, borders and transnational issues, resilience and adaptation to climate change, catastrophes and disasters, alpine and glacial change, tensions in sustainability, invasive species, conservation, and human health and wellbeing impacts.

(3) Environmental Humanities Issues and Interfaces: trends and emerging topics in this track include water representations in law and public policy; in history and environmental
history; in world religions, global literature, film, and drama; in the cultures of science; and in collaborative projects involving the sciences and humanities.

(4) Agricultural and Industrial Use: trends and emerging topics in this track include water commodification, rural and Indigenous communities, water technologies and treatment, impact of scale, transportation, oil and gas development, mining, fisheries and oceans, and hydropower.

Under Western Skies 2016 is pleased to confirm the following participants:

Bruno Latour
Gaia Global Circus (Chloé Latour, Frédérique Aït-Touati, Olivier Vallet & Company)
Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair

The UWS Committee look forward to receiving contributions from all environmental fields of inquiry and endeavor, including but not limited to the humanities, natural and social sciences, public policy, business, and law. Non-academic proposals are also welcome.

Please submit your panel or individual proposal at, by January 31st, 2016.

The UWS conference series is the 2015 recipient of the Environmental Community Organizer (ECO) Award conferred by the Environmental Studies Association of Canada (ESAC) (

Cornell University College of Human Ecology History of Home Economics Fellowship
The College of Human Ecology at Cornell University is accepting applications for the 2016 Dean's Fellowship in the History of Home Economics. We invite faculty members, research scholars, and advanced graduate students (must be eligible to work in the United States) with demonstrated background and experience in historical studies to apply for this post-graduate opportunity. The fellowship recipient will receive an award of $6,500 for a summer or sabbatical residency of approximately six weeks to use the unique resources available from the College and the Cornell University Library system in pursuit of scholarly research in the history of Home Economics and its impact on American society.

At the conclusion of the residency the fellowship recipient will provide a final report to the dean, including a bibliography of research pursued, and preservation recommendations for pertinent library and archival holdings. In addition, the recipient will be invited to give a public presentation on their research at a later date. Research projects should be intended for publication.

Relevant historical subject areas may include, but are not limited to:
history of food, nutrition, housing, consumer economics, the family, child development, design, clothing and textiles, and history of women in higher education among other key topics in American social history.

The deadline for receipt of all application materials is March 4, 2016. For additional information, see: Please circulate this announcement to interested individuals.

Call for Chapters: Midwest/Great Plains Borderlands Book
The Center for Western Studies seeks chapter proposals for "In Search of the Interior Borderlands: Where Does the Midwest End and the Great Plains Begin?,” an edited collection focused on exploring the dividing line, or imagined dividing line, between two of the nation’s understudied regions: the American Midwest and the Great Plains. This interior border has yet to become a significant point of discussion in the broader movement to analyze the borderlands of the United States and this volume is designed to advance the discussion in this direction. Proposals should explain the author’s general approach to the topic and include the sources to be consulted as well as the author’s curriculum vitae. Topics to be explored include, but are by no means limited to, historical understandings of the Midwest/Great Plains dividing line; the geographical and topographical approaches to designating a dividing line; literary or other cultural understandings of a dividing line; analyses of the regionalist thought and practices which have contributed to belief in a dividing line; agricultural practices which help explain the dividing line; environmental factors such as rainfall, glaciation, river development, and grasses which help to delineate a dividing line; historic and more recent discussions of the taxonomy of American regions, especially the real and imagined boundaries between the Midwest, the Great Plains, and the West; the understandings of Native Americans, American settlers, immigrants, political leaders, environmentalists, geographers, political scientists, and others which help explain the dividing line.

Chapter proposals will be due November 20, 2015. If a proposal is accepted, the author’s chapter will be due October 21, 2016. Final chapters should be approximately 5,000 words, including notes, and in Chicago style. All proposals should be sent to Harry Thompson, Executive Director of the Center for Western Studies: The editor of the collection will be Jon K. Lauck, President of the Midwestern History Association. The edited collection will be published by the Center for Western Studies.

Call for Papers: Okra to Opera 3

April 8 & 9, 2016
Converse College, Spartanburg, SC


“Long before I wrote stories, I listened for stories.”
- Eudora Welty, One Writer’s Beginnings

The focus of O2O 3 will be storytelling; approaches that take an interdisciplinary approach are especially welcome. As in the past, we are conceiving this topic broadly – stories are passed along through oral traditions, of course, but stories also are told in the ways families interact, the way communities function, in churches, synagogues, and other religious settings, around campfires and the dinner table. For better or worse, in our modern digital age, stories are told from a multitude of platforms. Books, television shows, and movies often tell stories about the south, and sometimes we experience them as true, sometimes we do not. We welcome proposals that examine all these diverse aspects of storytelling in and about the south.

We envision this conference as a place to pull many threads together in unusual and perhaps innovative combinations to examine larger questions. We welcome proposals that employ both traditional and non-traditional approaches to larger scholarly questions. To further ensure that this conference provides a place for interdisciplinary and non-traditional examinations of Southern Culture we would prefer single paper proposals rather than full panel proposals.

We invite papers from scholars and professionals working in the fields of literary studies, creative writing, folk culture, history, performing arts, social sciences and material culture, as well as students and practitioners of the art of storytelling in its many forms.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

Oral traditions
Music as storytelling
Southern writers
Stories of the dinner table
Material culture and storytelling
Stories about the south in popular culture
Southern filmmaking
Television in and about the south
Storytelling in diverse religious traditions
Digital storytelling

About the speakers: Joe Newberry is a North Carolina musician and teacher of traditional music and song, Joe is a frequent guest on Garrison Keillor’s Prairie Home Companion, and for the last six years he has served as coordinator of Old-Time Week at the Augusta Heritage Center in Elkins, WV.

Laurel Horton is an independent quilt researcher, writer, and editor; she attended the U of Kentucky and UNC Chapel Hill and is the author of Mary Black’s Family Quilts: Memory and Meaning in Everyday Life. Her current research focuses on quilts and counterpanes as documents of women's expressive culture.

Please send 250-word abstract as an email attachment, along with a brief CV (Word or PDF, with O2O 3 proposal in the subject line) to:

Anita Rose, Conference Chair @
Please check back on this webpage,, for schedule and registration information.


Article of Interest to Agricultural Historians
"The Big Rust and the Red Queen: Long-Term Perspectives on Coffee Rust Research", by Stuart McCook and John Vandermeer, chronicles coffee rust epidemics, the social and ecological conditions that produced them, and the evolving responses. Published in Phytopathology, this paper is open access through 15 October

California Historical Society Book Award
The California Historical Society (CHS) and Heyday have established the California Historical Society Book Award for a book-length manuscript that makes an important contribution to both scholarship and to the greater community by deepening public understanding of some aspect of California history. The prize carries a $5,000 advance and publication in both print and e-book formats by CHS/Heyday, with an awards ceremony, ample promotion, and an author tour throughout the state.

The purpose of the award is to recognize and promote an exciting new literary work in celebration of California’s heritage. The ideal manuscript will inform the minds and delight the imaginations of readers while generating a deeper understanding of California’s rich history. The work must adhere to high scholarly and literary standards and must be lively and engaging to general readers. In addition to conventional works of historical scholarship, other genres will be considered, such as biographies, collections of letters or essays, and creative nonfiction. Works of fiction will not be accepted.


•The topic should be broad enough to be of interest to readers throughout the state.
•Authors with manuscripts that will be completed within four months of the submission deadline are welcome to apply.
•Manuscripts, when finished, should be at least 40,000 words. While we are open to other possibilities, preference will be given to manuscripts of fewer than 75,000 words.

How to apply

Applications are due by May 1, 2016. Please send the following material to in a single PDF:

•A cover letter introducing yourself and your qualifications.
•A brief description of your project.
•An annotated table of contents.
•A statement as to the need or desirability of photographs, maps, or other graphics, with examples.
•If the manuscript is not yet completed, a statement that describes what has been done and a schedule for what still needs to be finished.
•A sample chapter (double-spaced, standard font and font size).

The jury will consist of a panel of noted historians, scholars, and publishing experts. Potential candidates may be contacted for additional information. The winner will be announced June 15, 2016. Publication will be approximately one year after a fully completed manuscript and all graphics are accepted. For more information, please visit: or

About the California Historical Society
The California Historical Society (CHS), founded in 1871, is a nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire and empower people to make California’s richly diverse past a meaningful part of their contemporary lives. We hold one of the top research collections on California history, which includes over 35,000 volumes of books and pamphlets, more than 4,000 manuscripts, and some 500,000 photographs documenting California’s social, cultural, economic, and political history and development, including some of the most cherished and valuable documents and images of California’s past.

About Heyday
Heyday is an independent, nonprofit publisher and unique cultural institution that promotes widespread awareness and celebration of California’s many cultures, landscapes, and boundary-breaking ideas. Through its well-crafted books, public events, and innovative outreach programs, Heyday is building a vibrant community of readers, writers, and thinkers.

Call for Papers Graduate Student Conference: Life & Law in Rural America: Cows, Cars, and Criminals
Life & Law in Rural America: Cows, Cars, and Criminals
Princeton University Program in American Studies
Graduate Student Conference
March 25-26, 2016

Rural America has become an increasingly productive space for critical inquiry and exploration for scholars in many disciplines. From school reform to policing, from healthcare to popular television shows, and everything in between, the rural United States is continually being explored from new vantage points. Current research suggests that rural communities share many of the same kinds of challenges in education, policing, poverty, and healthcare found in urban and suburban communities, disrupting long-standing assumptions about rural America. At the same time, academics and non-academics alike recognize that rural spaces and experiences are distinct.

This conference, sponsored by the Program in American Studies at Princeton University, will explore rural spaces, people, and the law throughout American history and the present. With this conference, we seek to bring together an interdisciplinary group of graduate student researchers and faculty respondents to ask interdisciplinary questions of the social, cultural, legal, religious, and intellectual experiences of rural life. What is “rural”, and how does law constitute a distinctly rural experience for those who live there? How do law, lived experience, and geography interact in distinct ways in rural places?

Alongside keynote speakers Angela Garcia and Lisa Pruitt, we expect participants may explore more specific questions such as, how has rural America changed over time and developed into what we know as rural today? How is policing understood socially by rural residents? What does employment mean when opportunities are dramatically limited because of geography? What is the place of religious commitment in the rural U.S.? In what ways are rural spaces “urban”? How is civic engagement—such as protests and boycotts—changed when anonymity is not possible?

We invite graduate students working in the fields of American Studies, Anthropology, History, Law, English, Political Science, Musicology, Geography, Sociology, Art History, and related fields to submit papers on topics including but not limited to law and:

Policing in rural communities
Economic opportunity
Religious commitment
Regional rural identity
Gender in rural spaces
Race in rural America—both within, and outside of, the South
Class and poverty in rural places
Local government law and rural politics
Federal policies impacting rural America
Farming and farm laborers
Hinterlands & Rural-Urban Relationships
Activism & Civic Engagement
Cultural stereotypes of rural America
Environmental studies
Rural research methods
Socio-legal studies

Please submit an abstract of no more than 400 words, a short biographical description, and your contact information by November 15, 2015. Proposals and questions should be sent to conference organizers Heath Pearson and Emily Prifogle at

Rural Diary Archive Website Launch and Transcribe-A-Thon
Rural Diary Archive
Website Launch and Transcribe-A-Thon
University of Guelph, Ontario

Thursday, September 24, 2015
McLaughlin Library, First Floor, Academic Town Square
2:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.

The event will take place on the first floor of the University of Guelph’s McLaughlin Library in the Academic Town Square from 2:30 PM to 5:30 PM. There will be diaries on display and a draw for prizes! Bring your laptop and make your mark on history by helping to transcribe these digital diaries into searchable text. Come learn more about local rural history and the diarists who helped document it.

Please RSVP to or call 519-824-4120 x53888 by September 15th, 2015

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Contact Us

The Society Office
James C. Giesen, Executive Secretary
Alan I Marcus, Treasurer
MSU History Department
PO Box H
Mississippi State, MS 39762

The Editorial Office
Claire Strom, Editor
Agricultural History
1000 Holt Avenue - 2762
Rollins College
Winter Park, FL 32789