Please see below the call for essays for a forthcoming volume on Edith Wharton. The volume is part of the series Critical Insights (Salem Press) and will appear in Fall 2017. More information can be found here.
Following the guidelines for the series, I seek essays (4000-5000 words) that are accessible to high school students and undergraduates, and are meant to:
Provide undergraduates with a comprehensive introduction to the author’s works, as well as the various approaches students are likely to encounter and study in their classrooms.
Help students build a foundation for studying works in greater depth by introducing them to key concepts, contexts, critical approaches, and vocabulary in literary scholarship.
The format of each volume is standard, and will include:
A “biographical” essay (2000 words) that gives an overview of Wharton’s life
A “historical background” essay (4000-5000 words) that addresses how the time period influenced Wharton as well as what makes her work relevant to a modern audience. The essay should consider a variety of contexts in which Wharton’s work is usually placed.
A “critical reception” essay (4000-5000 words) that reviews the history of critical responses to Wharton’s oeuvre, and addresses the major concerns that scholars have identified over the years. The essay should be a comprehensive overview of criticism rather than a focused analysis of specific perspectives.
A “critical lens” essay (4000-5000 words) that offers a close reading of Wharton’s work(s) from a particular critical standpoint (e.g. gender studies, cultural studies, disability studies, etc).
A “comparative analysis” essay (4000-5000 words) that analyses Wharton in the light of another (similar or contemporary) author.
In addition: the volume will include ten 5000-word essays, which will offer various critical readings of Wharton’s work. Topics could address (but are not limited to):
Wharton and the First World War; Wharton and race; Wharton and feminism; queer readings of Wharton’s works; Wharton and cosmopolitanism; Wharton and modernism; Wharton as an architectural historian; Wharton’s works in comparison with other writers (American or not); Wharton in a transatlantic context; Wharton and animal studies; Wharton and disability; Wharton and other genres (e.g. Gothic); Wharton in film; Wharton as a travel writer, etc.
I welcome topics that reflect the main critical approaches to Wharton’s oeuvre, as well as recent reevaluations of her work. Essays that incorporate a range of Wharton’s texts are strongly encouraged. Readings and approaches should not be dated nor so cutting-edge as to be dated in the next 10 years.
Please send an abstract (500-1000 words) and a brief CV by November 30, 2016 to:
Myrto Drizou, PhD, Department of English, Valdosta State University, Valdosta GA 31698, firstname.lastname@example.org
Notification of acceptance by December 15, 2016. Complete first drafts (5000 words) due by March 15, 2017.