Public Scholarship and American Studies Conference at

Public Scholarship and American Studies Conference at Rutgers University
Location: New Jersey, United States
Call for Papers Deadline: 2009-10-18 (in 9 days)
Date Submitted: 2009-09-24
Announcement ID: 170840
The Graduate Program in American Studies and the Rutgers American Studies Student Association at Rutgers-Newark invite proposals for panels, papers, roundtable discussions, workshops, screenings and multimedia presentations that illuminate the theme of “Public Scholarship and American Studies,” a conference to be held on our campus on Saturday, April 10, 2010 from 10am to 4pm.

Our conference will present and analyze public scholarship in light of multiple questions and perspectives. What is public scholarship? What is the place of the public in public scholarship? Who gets to speak as a scholar? What are the relationships among public scholarship and performance, artistic production and political activism? What are the local, metropolitan, national and transnational dynamics of public scholarship? How can local institutions, from museums to libraries to community organizations to houses of worship, become centers of public scholarship? How does the Web offer new venues and understandings of public scholarship?

What distinguishes public scholarship produced in the spirit of American Studies? What special challenges emerge when public scholarship engages contemporary issues or the distant past? How does public scholarship relate to the many fields that contribute to American Studies, such as history, the arts, literature, ethnic studies, women’s studies, gender studies, African American studies, performance studies, Asian Studies, Latino/a Studies, queer studies, jazz studies, folklore, social sciences, cultural studies, political science, urban studies and oral history? How do these fields influence our understanding of public scholarship and American Studies? “Public Scholarship and American Studies” will embrace topics and questions that arise from local, national and transnational experiences. How do contemporary questions shape public scholarship? How do inheritances from the past influence public scholarship today? What is the role of public scholarship in sharply polarized pu
blic debates? What is its role in issues where there seems to be a consensus?

The conference also seeks to explore critical issues that particularly influence public scholarship. What are the tensions among commemoration, documentation, and analysis in public scholarship? How do funding sources influence museum exhibits? Who owns history? Is censorship a threat to public scholarship? What happens when cultural or historical tourism becomes part of economic development strategies?

We welcome presentations from all who share our interest in public scholarship, American culture and American Studies, such as professors, graduate students, independent scholars, artists, museum curators, librarians, archivists, educators, multimedia producers, and documentarians.

All submissions are due by Sunday, October 18, 2009.

Please complete the submission template located on our website:

Whatever the format of your proposed session, we will give preference to fully organized sessions that do not require the addition of moderators, commentators or presenters.

Our AV resources are limited. We will honor technology requests in the order they are received.

FREE REGISTRATION. Coffee, snacks and lunch will be served.

The Rutgers-Newark campus is conveniently located within a 10-15 minute walk of the Newark Penn Station, and is easily accessible by bus, car, and train from throughout the New Jersey/New York metropolitan area:
Visit the website at

Peter J. Wosh
Director, Archives/Public History Program
History Department
New York University
53 Washington Square South
New York NY 10012
Phone: (212) 998-8601
Fax: (212) 995-4017

Peter Wosh

About Peter Wosh

Professor Wosh directs the program in Archives and Public History at NYU. Professor Wosh’s research has focused primarily on American religion, American institutional cultures, and archival management issues. His background includes work as an archivist in a variety of academic and nonprofit institutions, including: Director of Archives and Library Services, American Bible Society (1989-1994); Archivist/Records Manager, American Bible Society (1984-1989); University Archivist, Seton Hall University (1978-1984). He is the author of Privacy and Confidentiality Perspectives: Archivists and Archival Records, with Menzi Behrnd-Klodt (Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2005); Covenant House: Journey of a Faith-Based Charity (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2005); Spreading the Word: The Bible Business in Nineteenth-Century America (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1994); The Diocesan Journal of Michael Augustine Corrigan, Bishop of Newark, New Jersey, 1872-1880 (Newark: New Jersey Historical Society, 1987); as well as articles in various archival, historical, and library journals. Professor Wosh’s current research involves editing the published writings of Waldo Gifford Leland, a pioneering archival theoretician, for the Archival Classics series published by the Society of American Archivists.

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