2014 Conference

‘ANZASA at Fifty: Old Stories and New Beginnings’
University of Otago
Dunedin, New Zealand
11-14 February 2014

Fifty years have passed since the Australian and New Zealand American Studies Association held its first biennial conference in Melbourne. The passage of time has witnessed great change in the field of American Studies in Australasia. Early ANZASA conferences had no concurrent sessions and history dominated. Of the seventeen papers published in the proceedings of the second ANZASA conference, just three were by non-historians. The history, moreover, was heavy on politics, diplomacy and economics. In contrast, the most recent ANZASA conference in Brisbane featured twenty-one concurrent sessions, with papers almost evenly divided between history, on the one hand, and literature, film, television, dance, and art, on the other. Yet some things have remained the same. What Professor Merle Curti of the University of Wisconsin wrote of the first ANZASA conference in 1964 still applies: “varying cultural backgrounds can result in fertile insights and interpretations of American materials and problems.”

ANZASA’s fiftieth anniversary conference will be held at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, 11-14 February 2014. The conference organizers welcome all proposals in the field of American Studies. We especially encourage papers which take advantage of the opportunity that a fiftieth anniversary offers to reflect on the development of American Studies as a field for research and teaching in Australasia and in the world.

Keynote Speakers:

Frederick E. Hoxie is Swanlund Professor of History at the University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign where he is also an affiliated faculty member in the American Indian Studies Program and the College of Law. Formerly Vice President of the Newberry Library and a founding trustee of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian, he has published more than a dozen books in the field of Native studies. These include: A Final Promise: The Campaign to Assimilate the American Indians, 1880-1920 (1984), Parading Through History: The Making of the Crow Nation in America, 1805-1935 (1995), and, with co-authors R. David Edmunds and Neal Salisbury, The People: A History of Native America (2007). His most recent book, This Indian Country: American Indian Political Activists and the Place They Made (2012), will be published in paperback at the end of 2013.

Rosemarie Garland-Thomson is Professor of Women’s Studies at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia where she teaches feminist theory, American literature, and disability studies. Her scholarly and professional activities are devoted to developing the field of disability studies in the humanities and in women’s studies. She is author of Staring: How We Look (2009) and Extraordinary Bodies: Figuring Physical Disability in American Literature and Culture (1996); co-editor of Re-Presenting Disability: Museums and the Politics of Display (2010) and Disability Studies: Enabling the Humanities (2002); and editor of Freakery: Cultural Spectacles of the Extraordinary Body (1996). Her current book-in-progress, entitled Habitable Worlds: Eugenic Spaces and Democratic Spaces, concerns the logic and design of inclusive public space. In 2009, the Utne Reader named her one of the “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World.”

Conference Convener:

Russell L. Johnson


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