CFP: The Transnational American Periodical

The Transnational American Periodical: A one day symposium at the British Library, London, 15 December 2017, in collaboration with the

Network of American Periodical Studies 

Plenary Speaker: Professor Janet Floyd (King’s College London)

The ‘transnational turn’ in American Studies can be understood as perhaps the most important reimagining of  the field since its inception; challenging Americanists to reevaluate disciplinary protocols, re-think their relationship to the region they study, and revise their intellectual and theoretical assumptions. For researchers of American print and periodical culture, this shift has often proved especially challenging; reliance on the work of Benedict Anderson and other scholarship on print and nationhood has led to a dominant view of the periodical as a space for imagining nationhood, or as a keystone of the modern nation state.

Against these arguments for periodicals as an instrument for building and imagining American nationhood, this symposium will explore how American periodicals and periodical literature, from the colonial period to the present day, has reached across borders to displace the nation as the primary site of belonging. The symposium will consider how American periodicals – as well as their editors, contributors, and readers – circulated across national boundaries, and the transnational networks that such circulation both relied upon and created. We invite papers that explore how changes in the material text, technologies and economies of print, reading publics, and distribution networks have shaped and reshaped transnational discourses and movements. We also welcome scholarship that examines how periodicals encouraged and sustained transnational identities within the United States itself, including periodicals aimed at immigrant and diasporic communities.

The symposium will also interrogate the relationship between theory and the archive that emerges from a transnational perspective on American periodicals. How does uncoveringthe material, economic, and social conditions of transnational periodical production and circulation encourage us to rethink theories of cosmopolitanism, the border, or the Black Atlantic? How can we write a transnational history of American periodicals using archives that were shaped in response to nation-centric models of cultural, political, and intellectual history? And how can theoretical approaches adapted from other disciplines inform our approach to and understanding of the transnational impact of American print?

Topics for papers may include:

  • The circulation of US periodicals and periodical literature outside of the United States
  • The circulation of non-US periodicals or the ethnic press in the United States
  • Non-English periodicals or international editions of American periodicals
  • American periodicals and transnational understandings of race, gender, and sexuality
  • Transnational cultures of reprinting or collaboration
  • American periodicals and the development of transnational networks
  • Foreign correspondents and the American periodical
  • Theoretical and methodological approaches to transnational periodical studies.
  • The impact of archives, including digitization projects, on transnational approaches to United States periodicals
  • American periodicals, transnationalism, and the digital age

We invite proposals for both individual papers, and for panels involving three or more participants. As well as traditional 20 minute papers, we welcome proposals for digital project showcases, roundtables, lightening papers, and other non-traditional formats.

We would like to thank BAAS, NAPS and the Eccles Centre at the British Library, whose generous support allows us to offer fee reductions and some travel funding for postgraduates, for early career scholars on hourly-paid or part time contracts, and for early career independent scholars. If you wish to be considered for travel funding, please include this information in your covering email, with an estimate of your travel costs.

Please send all proposals and any questions to the conference organizers Dr James West (University of Birmingham) and Dr Katie McGettigan (Royal Holloway, University of London) at by 15 September 2017. Decisions of acceptance will be made by 1 October 2017.





registration open for “Magazines on the Move”

Magazines on the Move: North American Periodicals and Travel

(Friday 22nd September 2017 Newton Building, Room 44, Nottingham Trent University)

A one-day seminar hosted by the Centre for Travel Writing Studies, Nottingham Trent University, in collaboration with the Network for American Periodical Studies. Friday 22nd September 2017, Nottingham Trent University

Keynote speaker: Professor Andrew Thacker (Nottingham Trent University)

Organisers:  Dr Victoria Bazin (Northumbria University); Dr Rebecca Butler (Nottingham Trent University); Dr Sue Currell (Sussex University); Prof Tim Youngs (Nottingham Trent University)

Friday 22nd September 2017 Newton Building, Room 44, Nottingham Trent University.

Register here

A one-day seminar on hosted by the Centre for Travel Writing Studies, Nottingham Trent University, in collaboration with the Network for American Periodical Studies.

This day-seminar will focus on the relationship between North American travel writing and the periodical format. Its primary purpose is to facilitate historical and critical discussion of narratives of travel in North American periodicals.

The seminar is a collaboration between Nottingham Trent’s Centre for Travel Writing Studies (CTWS) and the Network of American Periodical Studies (NAPS). It draws on the expertise of both research centres, as well as that of our keynote speaker, Professor Andrew Thacker (NTU), a specialist in modernist magazines and spatial geographies of modernism.

Keynote speaker: Professor Andrew Thacker (Nottingham Trent University)

Full Registration (£20 – which includes lunch)

Half Day excluding lunch (£10)

Fee £20 (including lunch and refreshments) or £10 (without lunch). For registration and other queries please email: by 14th September 2017.


9.15 – 9.45 registration

9.45 Welcome

 10.00 – 11.00 Keynote: Andrew Thacker (Nottingham Trent University), ‘“America Invades Europe”: The Modernist Revue en Voyage’ (Chair: Victoria Bazin, Northumbria University)

11.00 – 12.30 Panel 1: Tourism and emigration in periodicals (Chair: Sue Currell, University of Sussex)

Shannon Derby (Tufts University, USA), ‘Tourism Narratives and the Production of Paradise’

Claire Lindsay (University College London), ‘Tourism advertising in Mexican Folkways (1925-1937)’

Mieke Neyens (KU Leuven), ‘True Norwegians in Mexico. Reports of travel and migration in Nordmannsforbundet, 1907-1940’

12.45- 1.30 Lunch

 1.30 – 3.00 Panel 2: Black travel writing and periodicals (Chair: Nick Grant, University of East Anglia)

Sofia Aatkar (Nottingham Trent University), ‘Motivity and Mobility in Jamaica Kincaid’s “On Seeing England for the First Time” (1991)’

Rachel Farebrother (Swansea University), ‘“It all depends how you look at it”: Travel Writing in the Brownies’ Book, 1920-21’

Jak Peake (University of Essex), ‘Life “Beyond the Color Line”? New York Wanderers and Caribbean Wonders’

3.00 – 3.30 Tea

3.30 – 5.00 Panel 3: Genres, form and location (Chair: Stephanie Palmer, Nottingham Trent University)

Josefin Holmstrom (University of Cambridge), ‘“A dream of enchantment”: Travelling with Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Agnes of Sorrento’

Matthew Pethers (University of Nottingham), ‘Early American Periodical Culture and the Problem of the Picaresque’

Eric White (Oxford Brookes University), ‘On the Move and On the Margins: Stranded Expatriates in Globe and The New Review’

5.00 Closing remarks: Tim Youngs (Nottingham Trent University)

The Centre for Travel Writing Studies (CTWS) was established by Prof Tim Youngs (Nottingham Trent University) in 2002 to produce, facilitate, and promote scholarly research on travel writing and its contexts, without restriction of period, locus, or type of travel writing.

The Network of American Periodical Studies (NAPS) is a research initiative set up by Dr Sue Currell (Sussex University) and Dr Victoria Bazin (Northumbria University). It aims to bring together scholars working on American periodicals (magazines, newspapers and other periodical publications) from a range of historical periods and disciplines.

The registration page for the Magazines on the Move seminar is now live at:
For catering purposes, please register before the 14th. There is the option to detail any dietary preferences or requirements when you click on the add basket tab.
You may also like to register for this free event at Nottingham Contemporary on the Thursday evening. Details are here:
You may also be interested in a photography exhibition there, ‘States of America’, the link for which is here:


With grateful thanks to the British Association for American Studies (BAAS) for financial support, we are now able to offer a limited number of travel bursaries and fee 

waivers for postgraduate students to attend. Priority will be given to those offering papers. Please state at the end of your proposal if you are a postgraduate wishing to apply for help towards costs.