Category Archives: Announcements

EWS Officers, 2021-2023

A complete list of officers from previous years is available under Membership – Officers and Executive Board

2021-23

President: Jennifer Haytock,  jhaytock@brockport.eduSUNY Brockport

Immediate Past President: Melanie Dawsonmvdaws@wm.edu  William & Mary

Vice President: Myrto Drizoumyrto.drizou@boun.edu.trBoğaziçi University

Secretary: Jay Jessee, mjjessee@uab.edu  University of Alabama at Birmingham

Treasurer: Sharon Kim, skim@judsonu.edu Judson University

Editor of the Edith Wharton Review: Paul Ohler,paul.ohler@kpu.caKwantlen Polytechnic University

Webmaster: Donna Campbell, campbelld@wsu.edu Washington State University(Ex Officio)

Membership Committee: Chair Sheila Liming, sliming@champlain.edu Champlain College 

EWS Archivist: Carole Shaffer-Koros, https://edithwhartonsociety.wordpress.com/membership/about/ews-archives/

At-Large Executive Board Members

Laura Rattray, Laura.Rattray@glasgow.ac.uk University of Glasgow

Virginia Ricard, Virginia.Ricard@u-bordeaux-montaigne.fr  Bordeaux Montaigne University

Meg Toth, margaret.toth@manhattan.edu Manhattan College 

Wharton in the News: From Sarah Whitehead, a previously unpublished story by Edith Wharton

From Sarah Whitehead, whose publication of a previously unpublished Edith Wharton story in The Atlantic was noted earlier this week.

Sarah Whitehead in the Times Literary Supplement:  “A joy glimpsed” 

Introducing an unpublished story by Edith Wharton 

Raised as an Episcopalian and later influenced by Calvinist thinking, Edith Wharton was drawn towards Roman Catholicism in the final years of her life. While she never converted, biographers have noted her growing attraction to the Catholic faith at this time; in the 1930s she attended masses on her two visits to Rome, and, at home in France, supported the work of the local curé as well as setting up an appeal in aid of the Abbé Comptour’s work in the Parisian suburb of Lutèce. In her fiction, the Catholic church, and Catholic priests in particular, make regular appearances, but these are often uncomfortable ones.  

…. 

“The Children’s Hour”, which has remained unpublished until now, charts an afternoon in the life of a Catholic priest. It is a noteworthy exception to these generally negative, or at least suspicious renderings of the Catholic church and its clergy. Indeed, while there is a touch of the customary unrewarded sacrifice and a sense of missed opportunities found in Wharton’s fiction, this story celebrates the comfort found in the faith and a joyous glimpse of the afterlife on offer to the poverty-stricken Catholic immigrants of New York and their Irish priest. 

New Books: Annotated Edition of The Age of Innocence by Teresa Gómez Reus


I would like to add to the New Books section my new annotated edition of The Age of Innocence, which has been published in Spain, in a new translation, to mark the centenary of its publication. The edition includes a long introduction and illustrations.
I enclose the link of the publication:
https://www.catedra.com/libro/biblioteca-catedra-del-siglo-xx/la-edad-de-la-inocencia-edith-wharton-9788437641508/
With thanks in advance,
Teresa Gómez Reus

Maureen Montgomery on The Buccaneers and English Country Houses, November 5.

From Maureen Montgomery:
I’m doing a webinar for the Newport Preservation Society on 5 November at 5.30 pm ET on The Buccaneers and English country houses.  It is for a general audience but perhaps some of our colleagues in the EW Society might like to join the webinar.
Here is the link to the NPS website with the relevant information about the talk and how to register.  It is free.  I did check with the NPS that I could advertise it to Whartonites.
https://www.newportmansions.org/learn/adult-program

Ngā Mihi

Maureen

Dr. Laura Rattray Book Launch, October 28

If you’re free on Wed 28 Oct (5pm UK time), I hope you’ll be able to join us in conversation “at” the Rothermere American Institute, Oxford. 

Details and registration below:https://www.rai.ox.ac.uk/event/book-launch-edith-wharton-and-genre

All best- Laura

Dr. Laura RattrayReader in American LiteratureSchool of Critical StudiesUniversity of Glasgow4 University GardensGlasgow G12 8QQ

CFP: The Nonhuman in American Literary Naturalism

 

Call for proposals

 The Nonhuman in American Literary Naturalism

Editors: Kenneth K Brandt and Karin M Danielsson

At the end of the 19th century, American authors such as Stephen Crane, Frank Norris, Theodore Dreiser, and Jack London were influenced by new advances in science—notably the idea of evolution. Nature and the nonhuman were crucial for these writers,
whom scholars   most often group under the rubric of American literary naturalists. Traditional scholarship on American literary naturalism has closely attended to various environmental pressures in urban and wilderness settings, but scholars have paid much
less attention to the naturalists’ investigations into the nonhuman, such as animals, plants, landscapes, houses, or weather. To extend and deepen our understanding of this under-researched field, we propose a volume of essays that offers a wide variety of
innovative critical approaches to the nonhuman in American naturalist literature. We welcome studies based in ecocriticism, animal studies, new materialism, narrative theory, or ethics. We are receptive to essay proposals focused on the core naturalists from
around 1900 as well as more contemporary writers in the naturalist tradition. Proposals may focus on authors including Crane, Norris, London, Wharton, Garland, Dreiser, Chopin, Dunbar, Sinclair, Twain, Glasgow, Frederic, Cather, O’Neill, Steinbeck, Wright,
Hemingway, Petry, Dos Passos, Larsen, Farrell, Hammett, Cain and others. More recent writers may include Oates, Vonnegut, DeLillo, Morrison, McCarthy, Wilson, Pynchon, and others.

Possible topic areas might include but are not limited to:

  • Animal agency  
  • Anthropomorphism
  • Nonhuman sentience
  • Ecology
  • Ethology 
  • Evolution
  • Farming
  • Forests, trees, plants
  • Houses and other structures
  • Human–nonhuman intersubjectivity
  • Landscape and place
  • Physical or environmental transformations
  • Posthumanism 
  • Speciesism 
  • Technology’s intersections with the nonhuman
  • Weather and climate
  • Wild, feral, and domestic nonhumans

 

The Lexington Books Ecocritical Theory and Practice series editor has expressed a strong interest in the project and has requested a full proposal. It is the publisher’s wish that authors or at least one co-author holds a PhD.

We invite essay proposals of a maximum of 500 words on any topic relating to the nonhuman in American literary naturalism by the deadline of the
8 January 2021. Please include a title, a maximum of five key words, and a brief biography. We aim to reply to respondents by 25 February 2021, and full drafts of essays (5000–8000 words)
will be due 1 September 2021. Please send a 500-word maximum proposal and a brief biography to karin.molander.danielsson@mdh.se and
kbrandt@scad.edu by 8 January, 2021.

Wharton in the News: The Age of Innocence: How a US classic defined its era

“The Age of Innocence: How a US classic defined its era” by Cameron Laux

In the first of BBC Culture’s series The American Century, Cameron Laux looks at how The Age of Innocence – published 100 years ago – marked a pivotal moment in US history.A

A funny story. Edith Wharton was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Age of Innocence in 1921 (it was published in 1920), but the jury had originally chosen to award it to Sinclair Lewis’s Main Street. The trustees, the actual powers-that-be within the organisation, to whom it falls to make the final decision based on the advice of the jury, balked at the choice because they thought Main Street was unwholesome. Back then, the prize was to be awarded to a novel “which shall best present the wholesome atmosphere of American life”, and Main Street, a trenchant satire on narrow-mindedness in a small midwestern town, ruffled some self-important feathers. In the book, a married man perhaps has an affair with a neighbour, while his wife contemplates an affair with a younger man, but does nothing about it – these are the only morally racy bits I can come up with. No, the problem was actually political: then, as now, the rural Midwest was considered to be the sacred beating heart of America (Mom and apple pie and all that), and it wouldn’t do to question that myth.

Some of this belief that literature should mind its manners survives to this day. For example, Thomas Pynchon and Don DeLillo, universally acclaimed as masters of the 20th-Century US novel, and both of whom mercilessly target the American dream, have been passed over for Pulitzers. When the 1974 jury unanimously recommended Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow (probably among the most important novels ever written), the trustees chose to give no award rather than to give it to him.

If Scorsese takes an interest in something, it must have become part of America’s DNA

But back to Lewis. Another of his books was then awarded the Pulitzer in 1926; supremely annoyed by his first go-around with them, he gave the award back. Then in 1930 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature – surely, one might think, establishing him as a global force in writing. Yet how many people today have even heard of Sinclair Lewis, let alone read one of his books? He has, for the most part, been swallowed by time (as have many of the Pulitzer laureates from that era: Ernest Poole, Margaret Wilson, Edna Ferber, Louis Bromfield, Julia Peterkin…), while Wharton flourishes. She has left him in her dust. In recent decades, two cinematic auteurs have even adapted her books into films stuffed with bankable stars: Martin Scorsese with The Age of Innocence (1993) and Terence Davies with The House of Mirth (2000). If Scorsese takes an interest in something, it must have become part of America’s DNA.

Thanks to EWS member John Tamburello for the link.

(read more here: https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20200922-the-age-of-innocence-how-a-classic-defined-its-era)