Editor’s Chair: Catching up with the American Humor Studies Association

Tracy Wuster, Vice President–American Humor Studies Association

The American Humor Studies Association has been active this past year working to promote humor studies as an academic field, and we are excited to share our work with you.  Last year, we sponsored excellent panels at MLA and ALA.  Many of our members presented on humor and Mark Twain at the 7th International Conference on the State of Mark Twain Studies, which featured an excellent keynote speech by Peter Kaminsky on the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.  We also published two issues of Studies in American Humor in the last year, as well as our newsletter, “To Wit.”  This year sees the transition from Ed Piacentino to Judith Yaross Lee as editor of the journal, with myself as book review editor.  Look for an interview with Judith on “Humor in America” soon and an excerpt from her wonderful new book, Twain’s Brand.

The AHSA is excited for our upcoming work for the next year:

*First, the AHSA is very excited to announce the creation of the “Jack Rosenbalm Prize for American Humor.” Jack was the first managing editor, and then editor, of Studies in American Humor and a strong promoter of humor studies as a field.  He was awarded the Charlie Award in 1993.

Awarded tor the best article on American humor by a pre-tenure scholar, graduate student, adjunct professor, or independent scholar published in (or accepted for publication in) a peer-reviewed academic journal.  Articles published in 2013 are eligible for the inaugural award.  Please submit by 12/15/2013 to: ahsahumor@gmail.com

See link above for more information.

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*The AHSA is working on Calls for Papers for three conferences next year–ALA, MLA, and our Quadrennial conference, which will be in New Orleans in December 2014.  Look for the CFP for that and for MLA soon.  The ALA call is looking for abstracts in the following topics:

1. “Political Humor from Franklin to Colbert”

2. “Teaching American Humor” (A Roundtable)

3. “Graphic Humor in American Periodicals” (Co-Sponsored with the Research Society for American Periodicals)

See our announcements page for more information.

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*The AHSA is  also co-sponsoring a Works in Progress symposium with the Mark Twain Circle of America in February.  This working conference is intended to advance publication of work on American Humor, Mark Twain, and related work in progress. Individuals papers and group symposia will be offered relating to work in progress which will be presented by participants and discussed and developed with the help of attending scholars.

Where:    The Red Lion Inn, Stockbridge, Massachusetts (http://www.redlioninn.com/)

When:     Thursday-Saturday February 20-22

Information at the announcements page above.

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Call for Papers:  MAD Magazine and Its Legacies  Special issue of Studies in American Humor, Fall 2014

Since 1952, MAD Magazine has regaled humor lovers and inspired humor producers in many media. Studies in American Humor, the journal of the American Humor Studies Association, invites submission of scholarly papers devoted to MAD Magazine and its legacies for a special issue of the journal appearing in the fall of 2014, coedited by John Bird (Winthrop University) and Judith Yaross Lee (Ohio University).

Topics might include, but are not limited to: *humor, verbal and/or visual  *subversive humor  *satire (as technique, analysis of individual examples or themes, etc.)  *parody (as technique, analysis of individual examples or themes, etc.)  *individual artists and writers  *regular and occasional features  *one or mode recurrent themes (politics, technology, parenthood, suburbia)  *cultural impact and legacies  *influence, general and specific (including direct influence on individuals and genres)  *reception

Potential contributors should send queries and abstracts (500-750 words) by October 1, 2013 or complete manuscripts by June 1, 2014.  Email queries and abstracts to studiesinamericanhumor@ohio.edu.  General information on Studies in American Humor and submission guidelines are available athttp://studiesinamericanhumor.org/.

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*You can join the American Humor Studies Association by mail or electronically.  Information on joining can be found on our website.  The AHSA website contains a section for syllabus, assignments, and information on teaching American humor.  We welcome any additions to this resources.  “Humor in America” will be running a piece on using podcasts to teach dialect humor, prepared by our Executive Director–Jan McIntire Strasburg–in the next few weeks.  Please contact me–Tracy Wuster (wustert@gmail.com)–if you have humor pedagogy resources you would like to share.

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*Finally, the AHSA is excited to announce that Studies in American Humor will soon be included in JStor in its full run from 1976 through our recent issues.  JSTor is kindly scanning past issues and hopes to include the journal in its next update.  Keep an eye out.

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One response

  1. Inge, M. Thomas (Tom) | Reply

    Tracy: FYI

    Also, through my auspices in the beginning, the AHSA has sponsored several panels for many years now at the annual meeting of the PCA/ACA (Popular Culture/American Culture Association). We used to have regular meetings at SAMLA as well.

    Tom

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