We decided to poll our faculty on what they did this past summer. The first post is from N. C. Christopher Couch who teaches The History of Storytelling.
Marshall likes to say that my art history Ph.D. from Columbia is in shamanism; this summer I was fortunate enough to be part of a seminar on Native American history and culture at the Library of Congress. For four weeks, twenty faculty members and grad students from all over the country read books by and got to meet with cutting-edge historians in the field, like Ned Blackhawk from Yale, and we each pursued our own research projects. Mine was on early printed devotional works in the Massachusetts language and how they were used by Native and English readers, a project that combines book history and ethnohistory. I will present a paper on that research at the Bucknell Digital Scholarship Conference in October. For the World Science Fiction Convention, MidAmericon II in Kansas City in August, I was on the programming committee, and also gave a paper in the simultaneous John W. Campbell Conference on science fiction scholarship on Superman comic strips. Research included tracking down the work of Katherine Cate Coblentz, whose work is memorialized in 10 beautiful etched glass panels from the illustrations of her children’s books in the Cleveland Park Library in Washington, D.C.