Apply for an MLA Bibliography Fellowship by 15 March 2022

The MLA International Bibliography is accepting applications for three-year field-bibliography fellowships. MLA field bibliographers examine scholarly materials and submit bibliographic and indexing information for citations in the bibliography. Open to all MLA members, including graduate students, the 2022 fellowships will run from 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2025.

Field bibliographers perform a valuable service for the profession and receive institutional recognition while deepening their knowledge of the field as well as their research skills. The MLA provides materials and training and waives registration fees for fellows attending training sessions at the MLA convention. On completion of the fellowship, fellows receive a $500 stipend and a certificate at the convention awards ceremony.

For more information and to submit an application, visit the MLA Bibliography Fellowships page. Applications are due 15 March 2022.

2023 Presidential Theme: Working Conditions

Christopher Newfield, the 2022–23 president of the MLA, has chosen Working Conditions as the presidential theme for the 2023 MLA Annual Conven­tion in San Francisco.

The diverse teaching and research of MLA members are better than ever. Our working conditions are not. The presidential theme of the 2023 convention asks us to reflect on what our teaching and research tell us about transforming our working conditions so that they do not hold us back as they do now and instead help us do what we need and want to do.

This theme—Working Conditions—asks us to consider questions like these:

  • What are the intolerable conditions under which we work?
  • What are the new conditions we need?
  • What new conditions are emerging from literary thought and research?
  • What new conditions are emerging from our teaching, mentoring, grading, advising, and administering?
  • How can we use our established and evolving expertise to reconstruct our profession for the sake of our everyday labor—and for the transformative things we each envision?

Our work already strives to understand the world in new terms. Literary study uncovers interior visions for another life, for liberation and justice, and for enabling forces not subject to the limits of existing reality. Literary and cultural theory identify transformative methods of counteranalysis. The study of languages, rhetoric, and composition theory builds powers of interpretation and radical rewriting that are relevant to texts and institutions alike. All our activities engender the production of culture and cultural knowledge. The presidential theme encourages members to consider their existing work in the context of conditions that enable or interfere with it and to explore the transformations of those conditions that our work implies.

Our profession needs new working conditions. We already know many of these. Teaching positions should be stable, tenurable, and properly paid: the trend toward precarity must be reversed. Our research needs much better and broader funding; research opportunities must be made available to instructors at all types of colleges, particularly access-oriented and minority-serving institutions. The role of racism in structuring the life of our profession must be stamped out. Humanities departments need real influence over university decision-making; they need resources to affect public understanding of the many areas on which we have distinctive expertise. We need international networks that engage with scholars around the world, particularly in the global South. In short, we have done superb analyses of literature and languages in crisis. This theme invites us to extend and intensify that work and also to use our knowledge to think through the reconstruction of the profession, its institutions, and its wider environment.

In her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston wrote, “There are years that ask questions, and years that answer.”  Perhaps we can make 2022 a year that answers.

Visit the MLA website to post a call for papers for the 2023 convention.

Results of the 2021 MLA Elections

In balloting that closed on 10 December, MLA members elected Dana A. Williams (Howard University) as second vice president. Williams will become MLA president in January 2024. Susan Stanford Friedman, Leah S. Marcus, and Ifeoma C. Kiddoe Nwankwo were elected to the Executive Council. Full election results are available on the MLA website. Congratulations to all those elected to MLA offices! 

MLA Bibliography Honors Fellows

The MLA International Bibliography congratulates the 2021 Fellowship Award recipients:

  • David E. García, professor of English, Carthage College
  • Liorah Golomb, humanities librarian, University of Oklahoma
  • S. C. Kaplan, lecturer of French, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Jessica Ryan, librarian, scholarly communications assistant, Smith College

The fellows, who have contributed to the bibliography from 2018 to 2021, will be awarded a certificate of accomplishment and a check for $500 during the 2022 MLA Awards Ceremony, which takes place at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, 8 January, at the Marriott Marquis Washington, DC, (Marquis 5). We offer our sincere thanks and appreciation for their service to the MLA International Bibliography!

Contribute to New MLA Volumes

You are invited to submit essay proposals for two new volumes in development: Teaching Economics and American Literatureedited by Katharine A. Burnett and Amy K. King, in the Options for Teaching series, and the nonseries volume Interventions: Asian American Rhetorical Activity across Time and Space, edited by Amy J. Wan and Morris Young. Proposals for both volumes must be submitted to their respective editors by 1 November 2021.

Instructors are encouraged to share their teaching experience by completing surveys for the following volumes currently in development in the Approaches to Teaching World Literature series: Approaches to Teaching the Works of Elizabeth Gaskell, edited by Deirdre d’Albertis and Deborah Denenholz Morse; Approaches to Teaching Medieval English Drama, edited by Emma Lipton and John Sebastian; and Approaches to Teaching Strange Tales from Liaozhai, edited by Rania Huntington. Information about proposing an essay is available at the end of each survey. Survey responses and essay proposals are due 1 November 2021.

MLA Members Receive 2021 NEH Grants

Congratulations to the twelve MLA members who are among the winners of the National Endowment for the Humanities grants announced in August 2021. Their projects include a free online resource for teaching Spanish to heritage learners; a digital publication of the notes of Viola Muse, a writer who took part in the Florida Federal Writers Project; a two-week institute on transcendentalism and social reform; and much more.

Wendy Belcher, Princeton University

Project Title: African Humanities Folkloric Project: Written Medieval Stories on Healing and Justice from Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, and Ethiopia Project

Description: Preparation for digital publication of 180 African Marian stories preserved in parchment manuscripts, which will be cataloged, transcribed, and translated from Ge’ez (classical Ethiopic) into English.

Project Title: Increasing Access to and Developing Digital Tools for Early African Literature

Project Description: The creation of a web-based platform and tools to enable scholars to search and engage with a unique online collection of African literature.

Robin Bernstein, Harvard University

Project Title: The Trials of William Freeman (1824–1847): A Story of Murder, Race, and America’s First Industrial Prison Project

Description: A history of incarceration in Auburn, New York, through the story of William Freeman, who was convicted of a quadruple murder in 1846.

Margaret Boyle, Bates College

Project Title: Identity and Multilingualism through Picture Books

Project Description: A two-week, hybrid institute for twenty-nine elementary school teachers to develop equitable teaching strategies using picture books.

Janine Fitzgerald, Fort Lewis College

Project Title: Yo Soy Porque Tú Eres: recursos para el aprendizaje de Español en contexto (Resources for Teaching Spanish in Context)

Project Description: Development of a free online OER (open educational resource) for teaching Spanish language using humanities collections to heritage learners.

Lauren Goodlad, Rutgers University, New Brunswick

Project Title: Unboxing Artificial Intelligence: An International Collaboration Bringing Humanities Perspectives to AI

Project Description: Planning of an international collaboration on the topic of bringing humanities perspectives to the creation of artificial intelligence.

Laura Heffernan, University of North Florida

Project Title: Documenting Black Jacksonville: The Viola Muse Digital Edition

Project Description: Preparation for digital publication of the interview notes of Viola Muse (1891–1981), a writer who took part in the Florida Federal Writers Project from 1936 to 1940.

Casey Kayser University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Project Title: Pandemics in History, Literature, and Today

Project Description: A two-week, residential institute for thirty-six middle and high school educators that would provide comparative perspectives on the 1918 and 2020 global pandemics.

Lauren Klein, Emory University

Project Title: Data by Design: An Interactive History of Data Visualization

Project Description: The creation of a born-digital publication documenting and analyzing the history of data visualization from the eighteenth century to the present.

Sandra Petrulionis, Thoreau Society, Inc.

Project Title: Transcendentalism and Social Reform: Activism and Community Engagement in the Age of Thoreau

Project Description: A two-week, residential institute for twenty-five college and university faculty members on transcendentalism and social reform.

Lynn Ramey, Vanderbilt University

Project Title: Immersive Global Middle Ages Institute for Advanced Topics

Project Description: A 28-month initiative for fourteen participants to learn about the use of immersive digital technologies for teaching and learning about the global Middle Ages through in-person and virtual workshops hosted by the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and Vanderbilt University.

Sandra Spanier, Pennsylvania State University

Project Title: The Letters of Ernest Hemingway

Project Description: Preparation for print publication of volumes 6, 7, and 8 of a scholarly edition of the letters of American author Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961).

Charles Stivale, Purdue University

Project Title: Translation of the Seminars of French Philosopher Gilles Deleuze

Project Description: Preparation for online publication of English translations of seminar lectures delivered by French philosopher Gilles Deleuze (1925–95).

Miriam Udel, Emory University

Project Title: Children’s Literature and Modern Jewish Culture

Project Description: Writing a book examining Jewish identity as constructed in Yiddish-language children’s literature.

 

MLA Members Awarded ACLS Fellowships

Congratulations to the ten MLA members who have been awarded 2021 American Council of Learned Societies Emerging Voices Fellowships, which support early-career scholars whose voices, perspectives, and broad visions will strengthen institutions of higher education and humanistic disciplines in the years to come. Fellows take up year-long placements with members of ACLS’s Research University Consortium, where they can advance their research and professional development while contributing to the teaching, programming, and administrative work of their host university.

Fellowships

Maira Elizabeth Alvarez, School of International Letters and Cultures, Arizona State University

Tarrell Campbell, College of Liberal Arts, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Maria A. Dikcis, Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, University of Chicago

Isabel A. Duarte-Gray, Division of Humanities, University of California, Los Angeles

Francesca Gacho, Communication of Science and Technology Program, Vanderbilt University

Michele U. Kenfack, Office of the Vice Provost for Advances in Learning, Harvard University

Gaelle Le Calvez House, Division of Humanities, Yale University

Jordan Lovejoy, College of Liberal Arts Engagement Hub, University of Minnesota

Laura Muñoz, College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, University of Southern California

Ena Selimovic, Division of Humanities, Yale University

2021 MLA Bibliography Fellows

The Modern Language Association congratulates the 2021 MLA Bibliography fellows who will serve from 2021 to 2024. The MLA International Bibliography staff members work with approximately one hundred field bibliographers, from all parts of the world, who cover subject areas, journals, and languages that cannot be indexed in the New York office. Each spring, five to ten fellowships are awarded to field bibliographers who, on completion of their fellowships, receive a stipend of $500 and a certificate during the awards ceremony at the MLA convention. For more information on bibliography fellowships, please visit the MLA website or contact Chriselle Tidrick at ctidrick@mla.org.

Congratulations to the following:

  • Stacey Amo, senior lecturer, University of Wisconsin, Superior
  • Luciana Cordo Russo, Alexander von Humboldt postdoctoral researcher, University of Marburg
  • Srigowri Kumar, adjunct instructor, Fordham University, Bronx
  • Andrea Malone, librarian, University of Houston
  • Bradley McIlwain, rare books cataloger, Lakehead University
  • Brendan Nieubuurt, librarian for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian studies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Sílvia A. Oliveira, associate professor of Portuguese and director, Institute for Portuguese and Lusophone World Studies, Rhode Island College
  • Haniyeh B. Pasandi, assistant professor of French and francophone civilizations, University of Maryland, Baltimore County
  • Ana I. Simón Alegre, assistant professor, Adelphi University
  • Paul Videsott, full professor, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano

 

MLA President Barbara Fuchs to Receive Instituto Cervantes’s Ñ Award

Barbara Fuchs, president of the Modern Language Association, will be presented with the inaugural Instituto Cervantes’s Ñ Award by King Felipe VI of Spain on the occasion of the institute’s thirtieth anniversary. The Instituto Cervantes was created in 1991 to further the teaching of Spanish and Spain’s vernacular languages and to enhance the visibility of Spanish and Latin American culture. This honorary distinction was created this year to recognize individuals or legal entities who have promoted the Spanish language around the world.

Fuchs is a professor of Spanish and English at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Her research interests include early modern Spanish and English literature, Mediterranean and transatlantic studies, literature and empire, transnationalism and literary history, race and religion in the early modern world, and translation and performance. Through her numerous books and articles published on these topics and her founding of the Diversifying the Classics project, an initiative that aims to foster awareness and appreciation of Hispanic classical theater, Barbara Fuchs has dedicated her career to the promotion of Spanish language and literary history internationally. During her term as president of the MLA, Fuchs has written about the centrality of multilingualism in the spring MLA Newsletter and has made multilingualism her presidential theme for the 2022 MLA Annual Convention in Washington, DC.

King Filipe VI will present the Ñ Award to Fuchs at the next annual meeting of the Instituto Cervantes board of trustees in October. Pedro Sánchez, Spain’s prime minister, will deliver the diploma certifying the award on 22 July at UCLA.

Contribute to an MLA Approaches Volume on the Works of Toni Morrison

The volume Approaches to Teaching the Works of Toni Morrison, edited by Piper Kendrix Williams, is now in development in the MLA series Approaches to Teaching World Literature. Instructors who have taught Morrison’s works are encouraged to contribute to the volume by completing a survey about their experiences. Information about proposing an essay is available at the end of the survey.