Mark Twain and the Natural World
Due Date: 12-15-2018
The Mark Twain Annual seeks article-length submissions examining aspects of Twain’s work that comment on the relation between human beings and the natural world. This broad scope allows for critical examinations of Twain’s writing about the natural world in any number of ways: as nature writing; as a form of environmentalism; as commentary on animal welfare, technology and science, and travel; and as a forerunner to mid-twentieth- to early-twenty-first-century writers (Krutch, Abbey, Kingsolver, Quammen, and Gessner) who offer comic responses to nature as well as recognize the comic in the natural world and in our relationship to that world. Anthologies of nature writing may feature short passages from Life on the Mississippi (and sometimes from Roughing It), but most of Twain’s writing about the natural world is left out and left unexamined. This special issue seeks to explore that underexamined territory in Twain’s fictive and nonfictive writings.
In addition to being published in the Annual, authors will have the opportunity to be part of the Quarry Farm Weekend Symposium program sponsored by the Center for Mark Twain Studies in Elmira, New York. The symposium will be held sometime in the beginning of October 2019, one month prior to the publication of the Annual. The gathering will begin with a dinner on the Elmira College campus, followed by a keynote address. The symposium will continue throughout the next day with presentations and discussions in the tranquil atmosphere of Quarry Farm, a writing retreat reserved for scholars and writers working in the field of Mark Twain studies, where breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be served. Registrants will be invited back to Quarry Farm on Sunday morning to enjoy an autumnal breakfast and casual discussions. For more information about the Quarry Farm Weekend Symposium, visit http://marktwainstudies.com/2018-quarry-farm-symposium/.
Those interested should submit a 150-word proposal to Ben Click at firstname.lastname@example.org by 31 August 2018. Final manuscripts must be submitted by 15 December 2018. Selected essays should be 4,000–8,000 words in length, but longer essays of more than 8,000 words will be considered.