Percival Everett and the American West (CFP; ALA 2017)

Call for Papers for a Panel on Percival Everett and the American West at the 2017 American Literature Association Meeting (Boston; May 25-28)

NPR’s All Things Considered, as part of an interview about his latest collection of short stories Half an Inch of Water (set mostly in Wyoming), introduced Percival Everett as “a man of the West: the region, for him, is a place of calm and comfort, danger and extremes.” He is a two-time winner of the Hurston/Wright Legacy Awards for Fiction, a recent recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in fiction, the author of around 30 books (novels, short stories, poetry), including the parodic genre western God’s Country, as well as multiple books set in the American West, including Suder, Walk Me to the Distance, Watershed, Wounded, The Water Cure, and Assumption. No other contemporary African American author has accomplished as extensive (and complex) a representation of African American western experience.

This panel will consider and explore Percival Everett’s writing about the American West. Individual papers might examine the relationship between race and region in Everett’s writing; Everett as a (western) genre writer; landscape and environment in Everett’s writing; erasure in Everett’s western texts; or other topics that examine the relationship between Percival Everett’s work and the American West or the western genre.

For consideration for this panel, please submit an abstract (250-500 words) to Michael K. Johnson ( by December 30, 2016

The American Literature Association’s 28th annual conference will meet at the Westin Copley Place in Boston on May 25-28, 2017 (Thursday through Sunday of Memorial Day weekend).

For further information about the American Literature Association conference, please consult the ALA website at