While recently California's First Lady, Maria Shriver, has focused public attention on women in California's past, historians have been producing important scholarship in the field of California women's history for over two decades. Yet despite this goldmine, no single compendium of California women's history exists. We believe the time is ripe to contemplate the implications of studying women's history in California. Taking advantage of the last twenty years of women's and California history research, we announce an anthology that will gather the best of recent and classic work in California women's history.
A unique set of historical, economic, and demographic circumstances have shaped the experiences of women living in California in a multitude of ways. California women's history is not uniformly an exceptional case, however, since in many ways their history resembles that of women elsewhere in the United States. This dialectic makes the study of women in California history engaging and important since the implications resonate through both women's history and California history.
With this in mind, the anthology will prompt answers to the questions:
• What does it mean to study California women's history?
• What impact has placing women in California history had on the master narrative?
• If California is different from other American states, what makes it
different and how have these differences impacted women?
• Does the study of women in California confirm or challenge the findings of California historians and women's historians?
The anthology will span the history of women in California. We invite articles on topics from pre-European contact, Spanish California, Mexican California, and American California through the turn of the twenty-first century. Areas of emphasis are open but might include examinations of ethnic/racial groups, inter-racial conflict and/or cooperation, family, sexuality and sexual orientation, politics broadly defined, and examinations of women's work in California's diverse economic sectors. The book will emphasize California's diverse geographies including urban and rural, coastal and interior, Northern and Southern regions. Authors might use gender, race, or place, as categories of analysis.
We envision this anthology as a companion to California history texts for undergraduates, a resource for scholars in both California and women's history, and a book with appeal for the general public.
Submissions should include a 1-2 page curriculum vitae, a 3-page proposal or summary of the paper, and a 1-2 page historiography contextualizing the research. Deadline is November 7, 2005. Editors will invite a select group of authors to submit completed essays by April 1st. Final decisions will be made by the summer. Please address a copy of the above materials to each of the editors.
Dr. Edie Sparks
University of the Pacific
3601 Pacific Ave
Stockton, CA 95211
Dr. Jessica Weiss
Institute for the Study of Social Change
2420 Bowditch St. #5629
Berkeley, CA 94720-5670
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