Conference Update: Edith Wharton’s New York in 2020

Edith Wharton’s New York:
A Conference Sponsored by the Edith Wharton Society New Yorker Hotel
June 17th-20th 2020

Please join the Edith Wharton Society for its upcoming conference marking the centennial anniversary of the publication of Edith Wharton’s Pulitzer-Prize winning novel, The Age of Innocence. We will celebrate this momentous year in New York, the setting not only of so many of Wharton’s works but also of much of her life.

While all topics are welcome, we are particularly interested in whole panels and individual papers that focus on New York as a geographical and thematic element in Wharton’s life and works. Papers could explore the role of New York City and/or the Hudson River Valley in Wharton’s works, Wharton’s own history with the region, or Wharton’s relationship to place and space more generally. Papers that offer new readings of The Age of Innocence—such as new historical approaches or legacies of The Age of Innocence, the novel’s relationship to other works by Wharton and/or her peers, and adaptations of the novel (for film, theater, etc.)—are also welcome.

Since 1920 marks the beginning of what many consider the “later years” of Wharton’s career, examinations of Edith Wharton’s works in the shifting literary and political foundations of post- WWI society are also of interest. The 20s mark the centennial of other significant Wharton texts, and essays that examine these later works are of particular interest.

In addition, there will be a keynote speaker and opportunities for tours of local attractions. Further details forthcoming.

We welcome submissions for full panels of 4-5 participants and roundtables of 6-7 participants as well as individual paper submissions. Please submit proposals no later than August 1st, 2019 to whartonnewyork@gmail.com

For full panel and roundtable proposals, please submit 200-350-word summaries of each presentation included in the panel or roundtable as well as a brief 50-word bio and A/V requests for each presenter.

For individual paper proposals, please submit a 350-500-word abstract, a brief 50-word bio, and A/V requests as one Word document.

All conference participants must be members of the Edith Wharton Society at the time of registration.

For additional information, contact co-directors at email address above or individually: Margaret Toth (Meg), Manhattan College margaret.toth@manhattan.edu
Margaret Jay Jessee (Jay), University of Alabama at Birmingham mjjessee@uab.edu

From Irene Goldman-Price: In Memoriam: George Ramsden

From Irene Goldman-Price:
Wharton scholars will be saddened to know of the death of George Ramsden
in Yorkshire, England, earlier this month.  George lovingly collected,
curated, and catalogued Edith Wharton’s library, which now is housed at
The Mount.  His years of dedication to this collection has enhanced
Wharton scholarship enormously and created a beating heart within
Wharton’s home in Massachusetts.  May he rest in peace.
**

CFP: EWS Prizes for 2019

The Edith Wharton Society is delighted to announce three prizes for 2019.  Below please find all calls for submissions.  All submission materials should be sent via email by June 30, 2019 to current EWS President, Melanie Dawson, College of William and Mary, at mvdaws@wm.edu.

The Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar

This award, formerly known as the “Edith Wharton Society Prize for a Beginning Scholar,” established in 2005, recognizes the best unpublished essay on Edith Wharton’s work by a beginning scholar, advanced graduate student, independent scholar, or faculty member who has held a full-time appointment for four or fewer years.  All entries will be considered for publication in The Edition Wharton Review, published by Penn State University Press.  The author of the prize-winning essay will receive an award of $250.  Submissions should be 20-30 double-spaced pages long and follow the 8th edition MLA style, using endnotes rather than footnotes. Submissions should include two attached files: an anonymized MS Word version of your paper and a separate cover letter containing the applicant’s name, essay title, academic status, e-mail address, postal address, and the award name.  Please use the subject line: “EWS Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar.”  Submissions are due to mvdaws@wm.edu by June 30, 2019.

The Edith Wharton Society Award for Archival Research 

The archival award, in the amount of $500, enables a scholar to conduct research at one of the Edith Wharton archives at Wharton’s library at The Mount in Lenox, MA, the Wharton Collection at Yale University’s Beinecke Library, or the Wharton papers at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas.  Submissions should include a proposal (of no more than two single-spaced pages) that describes the applicant’s overarching research project, its contribution to Wharton scholarship, the applicant’s scholarly preparation, and the relevance of the archive to the project’s completion.  Also include two additional attachments: a CV and a separate cover letter containing your current affiliation, rank, and mailing address.

Funds must be used for transportation, lodging, and other expenses related to archival research.  Notification of the award will take place by July 30, 2019.  The award can be used between August 1, 2019 and July 30, 2020.  A brief report detailing some aspect(s) of the research (not intended to preempt publication in other scholarly venues) will be due to the EWS president by September 1, 2020 and will be published in the Edith Wharton Review. Pleas use the subject line: “EWS Award for Archival Research.” Submissions are due to mvdaws@wm.edu by June 30, 2019.

The Edith Wharton Society Undergraduate Research Prize

First offered in 2014, the undergraduate research prize is open to students at all undergraduate levels.  Papers should be no more than fifteen pages long and can address Wharton’s works in any genre.  The winning essay will be published on the EWS website, and the author will receive an award of $100.  Please send an anonymized electronic submission as an email attachment in Microsoft word, along with a separate attached cover letter containing your name, essay title, undergraduate institution, the name of your faculty mentor, e-mail address (and perhaps an alternate email, if your email address is about to change), postal address, and the name of the award. Please use the subject line: “EWS Undergraduate Research Prize.”  Submissions are due to mvdaws@wm.edu by June 30, 2019.

The Edith Wharton Society sees its commitment to Wharton’s writing as including  financial support for Wharton scholarship, with two awards specifically for beginning scholars.  We thank all in the Wharton society who have donated to these prizes over the years, many of whom have been award recipients; your support of this endeavor enables our generosity.  If you are inclined to donate to support this year’s awards, a donation portal is linked in the top menu and here: https://edithwhartonsociety.wordpress.com/donate

Edith Wharton’s New York: Conference in 2020

Edith Wharton’s New York: A Conference Sponsored by the Edith Wharton Society
New York, June 2020

(exact dates and location TBD)

Please join the Edith Wharton Society for its upcoming conference marking the centennial anniversary of the publication of Edith Wharton’s Pulitzer-Prize winning novel, The Age of Innocence. We will celebrate this momentous year in New York, the setting not only of so many of Wharton’s works but also of much of her life.

While all topics are welcome, we are particularly interested in whole panels and individual papers that focus on New York as a geographical and thematic element in Wharton’s life and works. Papers could explore the role of New York City and/or the Hudson River Valley in Wharton’s works, Wharton’s own history with the region, or Wharton’s relationship to place and space more generally. Papers that offer new readings of The Age of Innocence—such as new historical approaches or legacies of The Age of Innocence, the novel’s relationship to other works by Wharton and/or her peers, and adaptations of the novel (for film, theater, etc.)—are also welcome.

Since 1920 marks the beginning of what many consider the “later years” of Wharton’s career, examinations of Edith Wharton’s works in the shifting literary and political foundations of post-WWI society are also of interest. The 20s mark the centennial of other significant Wharton texts, and essays that examine these later works are of particular interest.

In addition, there will be a keynote speaker and opportunities for tours of local attractions. Further details forthcoming.

We welcome submissions for full panels of 4-5 participants and roundtables of 6-7 participants as well as individual paper submissions. Please submit proposals no later than August 1st, 2019 to whartonnewyork@gmail.com

For full panel and roundtable proposals, please submit 200-350-word summaries of each presentation included in the panel or roundtable as well as a brief 50-word bio and A/V requests for each presenter.

For individual paper proposals, please submit a 350-500-word abstract, a brief 50-word bio, and A/V requests as one Word document.

All conference participants must be members of the Edith Wharton Society at the time of registration.

 

For additional information, contact co-directors at email address above or individually:

Margaret Toth (Meg), Manhattan College margaret.toth@manhattan.edu

Margaret Jay Jessee (Jay), University of Alabama at Birmingham mjjessee@uab.edu

Wharton Queries Answer about CBS Radio Mystery Theater

Mr. Slavney,

After listening to “The Beast” in its entirety, your hunch that Payton and Grams are mistaken would seem to be by substantiated by the similarities between Agate’s adaptation and Wharton’s 1908 story “The Choice” (first published in _The Century Magazine_ here: http://www.unz.com/print/Century-1908nov-00032/) and republished in her 1916 collection _Xingu and Other Stories_ (available online here: https://bit.ly/2tfoyKv). While Act I of the adaptation (including the accident, the dead man in the road, the dead man’s son seeking revenge, and the police investigation) is almost entirely Agate’s invention, the first part of Act II and much of Act III closely follow the plot of Wharton’s “The Choice” and directly quote her dialogue on numerous occasions.

There is a faint possibility—since the central character in “The Beast” claims, at one point, that he hit a dog (not a man) in the road and Wharton’s “The Blond Beast” includes an important episode involving an injured dog in the road—that Agee’s first act may have been partially inspired by Wharton’s other story. The similarities between the two titles could, however, be entirely coincidental, since it’s made clear in the course of “The Beast” that its title is (at least in part) an allusion to Hamlet’s soliloquy (quoted here from the 1604 Second Quarto, Folger Shelfmark: STC 22276) in which he exclaims, “What is a man / If his chiefe good and market of his time / Be but to sleepe and feede, a beast, no more:” (http://www.quartos.org/main.php).

Best of luck with your book,
Dan Hefko

Wharton Queries: EW story on CBS Radio Mystery Theater

I’m hoping that you or someone in your organization would be able to help me identify a particular Edith Wharton story.I am writing a book about the CBS Radio Mystery Theater, a radio drama anthology that aired from 1974 through 1982. In 1979, the series broadcast an episode that they explicitly represent as being “adapted from a story by Edith Wharton.” Unfortunately, they do not specify which story.
The plot of the radio drama concerns a wealthy woman who recently married a selfish man. He has already lost much of her money and aims to lose more. She has fallen in love with his friend and attorney. The husband strikes and kills a man in a hit and run. The police investigate and suspect him. The victim’s son wants to find the killer. The husband becomes more selfish and intolerable. His wife and the attorney discuss killing him. He kills the attorney, Finally the son of the man killed in the hit and run murders the husband in revenge.
Do you have any thoughts about which, if any, Edith Wharton story this adaptation resembles, even if only vaguely? I’d be grateful for any help that you or members of you group might be able to provide. Please feel free to share my note with others who might have some ideas.
Thank you,
John Slavney
Update 2/2/19 from John Slavney

 

Thanks much for your help in solving this mystery. It’s my theory that Payton and Grams are mistaken and the only similarity is in the title. I am scouring Wharton’s short stories presently and think it’s just a matter of time before the experts or I come up with a better match!

The theory that it’s a loose adaptation based on generalized Nietzchean themes seems a bit too generous, IMHO.

I’ll post any findings or theories in the forum.

Thanks again for your interest and assistance! –John Slavney