Call for Papers

What does America look like from the water? Water shapes places: Its presence, absence, arrival, or departure all affect how people understand, use, alter, and depict the world around them. Our interactions with water include everything from the international to the intimate—from the water beneath ships to the water we drink.

We believe that increased attention to water could advance developing scholarship on environment, landscape, and place; on the ways water both defines and evades territorial borders; and on water’s changing status as a natural resource. This conference will explore water’s influence on place-making in North America’s history, present, and future.

We invite graduate students working in American Studies, Anthropology, Architecture, Art History, Comparative Literature, English, Geography, History, History of Science, Indigenous Studies, Law, Music, Religion, Sociology, and related fields to submit proposals. We are interested in topics relating water to place and place-making, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Indigeneity and indigenous peoples
  • Race, ethnicity, and migration
  • Gender and sexuality
  • Colonialism and imperialism
  • Climate change and natural resources
  • Beaches, tides, shorelines, and the littoral
  • Charts, maps, and cartography
  • Lakes, rivers, streams, canals
  • Home and region; loss of place
  • Economy, industry, and power
  • Artistic and creative depictions
  • Animals and habitat


Questions? Email