The Newberry Seminar in American Literature

Midwest MS Conroy Bx.4, Fl.#189, Letter to Gladys, Feb.20, 1961
Letter from Gwendolyn Brooks to Gladys Conroy. Midwest MS Conroy Bx.4, Fl.#189, Letter to Gladys, Feb.20, 1961

Seminar sessions are held on Thursdays from 5 – 7 pm at the Newberry, 60 West Walton Street, Chicago, Illinois.

This seminar, debuting in 2013, provides a forum for works in progress that explore the history of American Literature. It does so at a moment when the field’s central concepts – of historicism as a mode of literary study, of national literatures, of the distinctiveness of the literary – are under some pressure. We are particularly interested in writing that in some way exemplifies, responds to or significantly acknowledges this pressure, while at the same time engaging specific literary or critical texts.

To apply to present during the 2014-2015 academic year, see our Call for Proposals.

The seminar is sponsored by the Department of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the Department of English
Language and Literature at the University of Chicago.

Walter Benn Michaels and Kenneth Warren are the coordinators for the 2013-14 seminar.

To attend, please read our Registration Information. View flyer for the complete schedule in PDF form.

Seminar Schedule

Thursday, September 26, 2013
American Literature Seminar
Kate Marshall, University of Notre Dame

“The Old Weird”

Thursday, October 10, 2013
American Literature Seminar
Natalia Cecire, Yale University


Thursday, December 5, 2013
American Literature Seminar
Gordon Hutner, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

“The Twenty-first Century American Novel: An Anatomy”

Thursday, February 13, 2014
American Literature Seminar
Kinohi Nishikawa, University of Notre Dame

“The Black Book and the End of History”

Thursday, March 6, 2014
American Literature Seminar
Cyraina Johnson-Roullier, University of Notre Dame

“An America(n)? Exception: Anna Julia Cooper and the Problem of Blackness”

Thursday, April 10, 2014
American Literature Seminar
Stephen Best, University of California, Berkeley

“Wrongful Life”
Stephen Best, University of California, Berkeley