2018 WCSA Conference Plenary Announcement

The WCSA welcomes NewNationLogo07

to their 2018 annual conference held at Stony Brook University’s Center for the Study of Inequalities, Social Justice, and Policy.

Sarah Leonard, Executive Editor of In Justice Today and co-editor of The Future We Want: Radical Ideas for a New Century, will moderate contributing writers, Michelle Chen, Bryce Covert, and John Washington.

Click here for more information about our upcoming conference.


June 2018 Issue JWCS: Open Call, No Theme

The Journal of Working-Class Studies seeks submissions that explore working-class life around the world. Submissions should explore topics that actively involve and serve the interests of working-class people. We welcome submissions that promote critical discussions of the relationships among class, race, gender, sexuality, nationality, and other structures of inequality. We also welcome interdisciplinary, multi-disciplinary, and disciplinary explorations of working-class experience.

We endeavour to publish timely, as well as academically rigorous articles, therefore the deadline for submissions is March 31, 2018.

Send submissions and inquiries to editorial@workingclassstudiesjournal.com

Paul Lauter Receives ADE March Award

At this year’s MLA conference, the ADE Executive Committee awarded Paul Lauter, Gwendolyn Miles Smith Professor of English, Emeritus at Trinity College (Connecticut), the Francis Andrew March Award, which honors exceptional service to the profession of English. The award is named for Francis March (1823–1911), professor of English at Lafayette College and the first professor of English in America.  Lauter served as president of the American Studies Association and is the founding general editor of the influential Heath Anthology of American Literature.  He is also the author or editor of several books, including From Walden Pond to Jurassic Park: Activism, Culture, and American Studies and, most recently, A History of American Working-Class Literature.  He was one of the founding editors of the Feminist Press and of the journal Radical Teacher.  Lauter has been an active member of the WCSA and co-wrote its constitution with Sherry Linkon.

Children’s Books to Puerto Rico

Hard Ball Press, in collaboration with children’s book author Mark Torres, has donated 200 bilingual children’s books to the Puerto Rico Teachers Federation (FMPR). The seven titles, all picture books for young children, explore the kinds of social justice themes that families in Puerto Rico face every day, including fair wages (Joelito’s Big Decision, Jimmy’s Carwash Adventure), indigenous people’s rights and culture (Margarito’s Forest), gender equality (Hats Off For Gabbie!), and economic inequality (The Cabbage That Came Back).  Mark’s book, Good Guy Jake teaches children how a union fights to reinstate a sanitation worker unfairly fired for taking toys from the trash that he repaired and gave to children in a local shelter for Christmas.

With so many books destroyed by the hurricane, the children in many schools in the San Juan area have enjoyed the books, including teenage students with learning disabilities. Hard Ball Press will be donating copies of all new children’s books as they come into print.

The Poverty of Academia

The Journal of Working-Class Studies Special Issue, The Poverty of Academia: Exploring the (Intersectional) Realities of Working Class Academics, published in December 2017, features essays from Kishonna L. Gray and Reshawna L. Chapple; Kim A. Case; Elizabeth Lee and Tonya Maynard; Emma Penney and Laura Lovejoy; Natalie Currie-Patterson and Kaitlyn Watson; Matthew Spokes; Nancy Aguirre; Diane Reynolds; A.M. Foiles Sifuentes; Sarah Prior; Emma Vossen, and others. Be sure to check out the book reviews as well!

Thank you to guest editors Reshawna L. Chapple, University of Central Florida; Kishonna L. Gray, Arizona State University; LaDonna Long, Roosevelt University; and Mia Ortiz, Bridgewater State University.

New Book Published on Dismantling Racism

Karen Gaffney, Professor of English at Raritan Valley Community College and author of the blog, Divided No Longer, has published Dismantling the Racism Machine:A Manual and Toolbox.

Here’s a description of the book from Routledge Press:

“While scholars have been developing valuable research on race and racism for decades, this work does not often reach the beginning college student or the general public, who rarely learn a basic history of race and racism. If we are to dismantle systemic racism and create a more just society, people need a place to begin. This accessible, introductory, and interdisciplinary guide can be one such place. Grounded in critical race theory, this book uses the metaphor of the Racism Machine to highlight that race is a social construct and that racism is a system of oppression based on invented racial categories. It debunks the false ideology that race is biological. As a manual, this book presents clear instructions for understanding the history of race, including whiteness, starting in colonial America, where the elite created a hierarchy of racial categories to maintain their power through a divide-and-conquer strategy. As a toolbox, this book provides a variety of specific action steps that readers can take once they have developed a foundational understanding of the history of white supremacy, a history that includes how the Racism Machine has been recalibrated to perpetuate racism in a supposedly “post-racial” era.”