(See Part II of the wrap-up here.)
Historiann coming at you again from the High Plains Desert. I had planned to update the blog more frequently but was unable to do so, for reasons which will become apparent in the following wrap-up. It was a (mostly) great trip and all of the panels I saw were really interesting and useful. Here are some of the highlights (and a dramatic lowlight!):
- Thursday morning’s ”State of the Field: Borderlands History in Early America,” featuring Juliana Barr, Jane Merritt, and Alan Taylor, with Susan Sleeper-Smith serving as chair. Merritt provided a detailed overview of post-Turnerian borderlands history, Barr’s comments focused on the problematic fact that ”borders” still usually means fictitious borders on maps drawn in Paris, Madrid, and London instead of equally contested Native American geographies, and Taylor sounded the alarm that borderlands might become the next “Atlantic World”–a concept that loses its focus or explanatory power because everyone claims to be doing it. Sleeper-Smith’s summary comments noted the power of studies on gender and sexuality to illuminate connections between geographically and culturally different borderlands spaces, and she also confided to Historiann after the panel re: Taylor’s concern that “borderlands” is on its way to being the next “Atlantic World”: ”It’s already happened.” Given that the theme of the conference was “History Without Boundaries,” that seems very likely!
- A longshoreman’s lunch of beer and oysters with Tenured Radical Thursday afternoon, at a tavern with an excellent view of Puget Sound and the Olympic Range.
- An private insider’s tour of Seattle fashion shopping with Stephanie M. H. Camp, late of the University of Washington and now at Rice University. She got a fab DvF wrap dress, and I got a fun spring/summer caftan-style dress and a spring raincoat. (We don’t see many raincoats for sale around these arid parts!) Continue Reading »