Latest Episodes

S05E02 | The Founding Mothers of American Adoption | Subscribe

In 1842, nine years before the first adoption law was passed in the United States, two sisters from Boston, Anstrice and Eunice C. Fellows, began what would be the first adoption agency—in the form of a reform periodical, The Orphans’ Advocate and Social Monitor. With only the aid of their pens, in a small office near the Boston Common, these women created a cultural shift regarding orphaned and displaced children.

In this episode, Sophia Hadley (Boston University) tells the story of the Fellows’ revolutionary work and their intervention into a surprisingly contentious discourse on orphan care in the nineteenth century. Amidst the rise of institutional care for orphans, the sisters promote the practice of adoption, specifically adoption within the local community. In the editorial and fictional works within the publication, the Fellows imagine varied members of the community—single, married, male, female, poor, and rich—as capable of having beneficial and empowering relationships with children among them, regardless of biological relation to them. Eschewing an individualistic or institutional approach to child-rearing, these authors imagine a collective responsibility in the care of children. This vision proves liberating for both the children and the guardians alike, shaping families in nontraditional ways. During our contemporary time in which the family unit is being productively reimagined, the forgotten story of the Fellows sisters and their incredible periodical can provide a priceless resource. This episode was produced by Sophia Hadley. Additional production support was provided by Lizzy LeRud (Georgia Institute of Technology). Full episode transcript available at bit.ly/C19PodcastS05E02.


S05E01 | Reconstructions: Looking Forward to the Seventh Biennial C19 Conference | Subscribe

“Reconstructions” is the theme and inspiration for the upcoming, in-person C19 conference, to be held in Florida’s Coral Gables/ Miami region this March 31st-April 2nd. In this episode members of the podcast team interview the conference organizers as they prepare for the event and highlight what attendees can expect. Sarah Chinn (Hunter College, CUNY), Anna Mae Duane (University of Connecticut), Edlie Wong (University of Maryland), Martha

Schoolman (Florida International University), and John Funchion (University of Miami) share behind-the-scenes insights as well as suggestions for potential conference attendees. For additional information, the conference program is available online.


This episode was written by Ryan Charlton (Auburn University) and produced by Ryan Charlton, Rachel Boccio (LaGuardia Community College, CUNY), Ashley Rattner (Tusculum University), Julia Bernier (Washington and Jefferson College), DeLisa Hawkes (University of Tennessee, Knoxville), and Lizzy LeRud (Georgia Tech). Music [freemusicarchive.org] by Lobo Loco used under a Creative Commons [creativecommons.org] license. A full transcript of the episode is available here




Have you loved our podcast? Want to get in on the action? Want to work out ideas that don’t necessarily translate directly into the form of a traditional scholarly article? Now is the time. This podcast exists for and because of people like you—and we need your episode ideas as we move into our fifth season! (Catch up on the first four seasons here.)


We invite proposals from individuals and collaborators of all ranks for single podcast episodes that offer creative, story-driven analysis of topical events that spark connections to nineteenth-century America. We are especially interested in episodes that help make both the nineteenth-century and the specific disciplinary knowledge of our scholarly community relevant and exciting to a wide audience.  As our podcast grows, we seek to expand its potential to engage diverse publics in the civic and cultural life of the past. 


Proposals are due October 29th—make your voice heard!


No previous experience with podcasting is required. The C19 Podcast Subcommittee will assign a producer to help guide the technical and creative development of your episode. Having said this,  applicants will be expected to produce their own audio files. (It’s really easy!) Requirements for significant production assistance from the Subcommittee should be noted in the proposal pitch. 


We seek proposals on any topic relating to long nineteenth-century American literature, culture, and history. Episode topics might include:


  • Archival discoveries

  • Understudied or non-canonical authors or figures

  • Sites, landscapes, memorials, or collections of historic or literary significance

  • Literary adaption or depictions of nineteenth-century America in popular culture

  • Personal narratives of reading or writing

  • Discussions of new books in the field, new scholarly trends, or new J19 issues

  • Responses (or tangents) related to previous episodes of the C19 Podcast

  • Appearances by granting agency officers or editors of journals or presses

  • Previews of upcoming conferences or symposia

  • Models of interdisciplinary collaboration or engagement

  • Resources and/or workshops on conference proposals, writing a dissertation, or applying to a conference, or starting a new book project

  • Reports on academic activism, pedagogy, and inclusion, past and present

  • Considerations of current political, cultural, and social developments in the context of the nineteenth century

  • Discussions of pedagogical approaches

  • Tips and resources for undergraduates, graduates, and/or NTT and junior faculty on navigating the academic or alt-ac landscape

  • Timely environmental, social, cultural, or political events that resonate with nineteenth-century debates, discoveries, aesthetics, or action


Possible formats may include (but are not limited to) narrative expositions, interviews, analyses of underrepresented texts, and panel discussions. Strong proposals will be anchored in a central argument or query and feature a compelling narrative arc so as to appeal to both scholarly and public audiences.


Applications should include a proposal (max 500 words), CV(s), and an appendix. Proposals should address the following: the topic and its relevance; the plan for adapting the topic to the podcast medium (approximately 30 min. episode); the episode format (roundtable, interview, storytelling, etc.) with an overview of the structure; and relevant scholarly and technical qualifications related to the subject. The appendix (1 page) may include sample questions for interviews, additional participants (if any), and logistics in terms of access to resources, equipment, and technical help. 


Submissions and any questions should be addressed to Rachel Boccio (LaGuardia Community College/CUNY)  and Ashley Rattner (Tusculum University) at c19podcast@gmail.com