American Literature, Women’s Writing, Willa Cather Studies: The Work of Ann Romines

The Department of English invites you to an afternoon focused on the multi-faceted work of Professor Ann Romines, who retired this year after 43 years of service to our department.  Professor Romines will be present at this event honoring her work; the afternoon will include music, a panel of former students, and a keynote address by Guy Reynolds, Professor of English and Director of The Cather Project at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

The events on October 2 will begin in the recital hall of the Music Department, Phillips B-120.  The afternoon will continue in the Myers Room of GW’s new Textile Museum.

Ann Romines is well known for her work in Willa Cather studies, and has also published widely in American literary studies and women’s writing more generally.  Professor Romines has been an active member of the Willa Cather Foundation’s Board of Governors for more than 20 years.  She has been involved in numerous editing projects connected to Cather Studies, including the scholarly edition of Sapphira and the Slave Girl (2009) and Willa Cather’s Southern Connections: New Essays on Cather and the South (2000).  Most recently, she was the editor for At Willa Cather’s Tables: The Cather Foundation Cookbook (2010).  Professor Romines is also the author of a wide range of books and articles, including The Home Plot: Women, Writing, and Domestic Ritual (1992) and Constructing the Little House: Gender, Culture, and Laura Ingalls Wilder (1997), which received the Children’s Literature Association annual award for best scholarly book on children’s literature. As a teacher, Professor Romines developed popular classes on these and other topics, including signature courses on Western writing and on old age and adolescence.  
Professor Guy Reynolds,
University of Nebraska,

Professor Reynolds’s keynote address is titled “Reading Cather through the Romines Lens”: “This talk will look at how literary-historical scholarship, of the sort Ann Romines so masterfully practices in her edition of Cather’s Sapphira and the Slave Girl, radically shifts and deepens our understanding of fiction.  Tracking across the novel, and the fascinating cultural problems Cather represented in her last work, we will see how scholarly editing sharpens our sense of the complex subtexts of a narrative.”

The event is free and open to the public; it is made possible by the Wang Endowment in the Department of English.

Full Schedule:

2-2:30 PM Phillips Hall, Room B-120 (GW’s Department of Music)

Introductory Remarks, Robert McRuer, English Department Chair

A Performance from the Operatic Adaptation of Willa Cather’s “Paul’s Case”: “The English Teacher’s Aria”

Millicent Scarlett, soprano
Gregory Spears, composer and pianist

Millicent Scarlett
Gregory Spears

3-4:30 PM Myers Room, GW’s Textile Museum 

Panel Presentation:

Charmion Gustke (Belmont University), “‘The Look Itself’: Searching for Cather in Concord”

Michael O’Neill (GWU), “Cognition, Capitalism, and Willa Cather”

Lisbeth Fuisz (Georgetown University), “Ann, Willa Cather, and Me”

Naomi Lesley (Holyoke Community College), “Illicit Reading Practices and the Teaching of English”

4:45-6 PM KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Professor Guy Reynolds, “Reading Cather through the Romines Lens”

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