MyAmericanFuture

MyAmericanFuture
MyAmericanFuture

Saturday, December 20, 2014

December 20-21, 2014: Spring 2015 Preview

[The Fall 2014 semester is coming to a close, and as usual I wanted to end the semester with some reflections on my courses and other conversations; that has led up to this weekend post on some anticipations of spring (and not just the season; although, yes). I’d still love to hear some of your Fall 2014 reflections and/or Spring 2015 plans in comments!]
Five things I’m looking forward to in the New Year and its new semester:
1)      My First AHA Presentation: Other than some celebrating with the boys, my first act of 2015 will be to travel to New York, where I’ll be presenting as part of a panel on short-form scholarship at the American Historical Association Conference. It’s way past time for this AmericanStudier to connect to the most significant American history conference, and I’m very excited to attend for the first time.
2)      A New (To Me) Course: After a semester in which I only taught one American literature course, I’ll be returning to American lit with a vengeance: two sections of American Literature II (1865-present), one of Major American Authors of the 20th Century, and one of a senior seminar I’ll be teaching for the first time: The Romantic Movement in the U.S. While I enjoy the Romantics, I decided to broaden the class slightly: renaming it The Romantic Period in the U.S. and focusing on multiple genres and contexts for the 1830-1865 era. I’ll share more details in the spring!
3)      My Next ALFA Course: I’ve blogged before about my experiences with the wonderful ALFA program—it’s been over a year since I got to teach an ALFA course, and am very excited to do so in the spring. I decided to focus on the topic of my next book project: five nominees for the Hall of American Inspiration. I can’t wait to share these inspiring Americans and some of their writings and voices with the ALFA students.
4)      A Return to Toronto: In late April I’ll be back in Toronto, helping run NeMLA’s 2015 Conference (the last one before my own conference as President, in Hartford in 2016), hopefully delivering another talk at the University of Toronto’s Cheng Yu Tung East Asian Library, and definitely exploring this wonderful city further.
5)      Who Knows?: I’ve got other good stuff on the horizon: a book talk as part of ALFA’s Food for Thought program,  the next NEASA Colloquium, and more. But many of the best things over the last few years have arisen unexpectedly, and I’d like to leave some room for that to continue to happen. When they do arise, you can be assured I’ll update you here—and I hope you’ll do the same, now and going forward!
Next series starts Monday,
Ben

PS. Any reflections or plans you’d share?

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