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Latest Episodes

S05E05 | Finding Whitman Between the Columns: A Trip Into Nineteenth-Century Newsprint | Subscribe

Everybody knows Walt Whitman (1819-1892) as the poet of Leaves of Grass (1855), but only a few think of him as a newspaperman. Still, Whitman’s journalistic writings are not only more numerous than his poetic output, but they also attracted more readers for much of his career. This podcast episode looks at one of Walt Whitman’s jobs in journalism: his editorial post at the Brooklyn Daily Times in the late 1850s, after he had already published two unsuccessful editions of Leaves of Grass.

The extent of Whitman’s writings for the Times is hotly debated, with scholarly assessments ranging from “no association” to “wrote most editorials for multiple years.” In this episode, Dr. Matt Cohen (University of Nebraska—Lincoln), one of the co-directors of the Walt Whitman Archive, interviews Whitman researchers Drs. Stephanie M. Blalock (University of Iowa Libraries), Kevin McMullen (University of Nebraska—Lincoln), Stefan Schöberlein (Texas A&M University—Central Texas), and Jason Stacy (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville) who have been trying to identify and track Whitman’s anonymous writings in that paper for a collaborative grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Their conversation not only engages with scholarly issues relating to authorship attribution, antebellum newspaper culture, and Whitman biography but also features excerpts of newly discovered writings by Whitman—on topics as disparate as prostitution, policing, and public works. Additional production support provided by Lizzy LeRud (Georgia Institute of Technology). Transcript is available at [].

S05E04 | Public Memory and Los Angeles’ Latinx C19 | Subscribe

It is likely that you walk past a road or building sign every day without the slightest thought about how the names listed on these spaces have rich ties to an activity that is popular in your town or city, important to the history of a particular group of people in your community, or to a historical event that a particular narrative has overlooked. This episode centers on Los Angeles’ Latinx communities as integral sites of C19 cultural production through its retelling of the historical significance of the Pico and Sepulveda intersection in West Los Angeles and the famous horse race that occurred there between Pío Pico and José Antonio Andrés Sepúlveda, two prominent figures in Mexican California, on March 20, 1852. Scholars Efren Lopez (SDSU-Imperial Valley), Marissa López (UCLA), and Gabriela Valenzuela (UCLA), as well as young poets from 826LA, a non-profit writing center serving K-12 youth, and the British-Guyanese writer Fred D’Aguiar, invite listeners to consider how digital tools can be used to spark conversations about our surroundings, literature, and public memory. DeLisa D. Hawkes (UT-Knoxville) produced this episode. Check out this complete list of URLs related to these scholars’ work on public memory and Los Angeles’ Latinx C19 studies at Full transcript at



Have you loved listening to our podcast? Have you thought about how you might showcase your own work in this medium? This podcast exists for and because of people like you—and we need your episode ideas as we move into our sixth season! 

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 September 30th!

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
●       Reflections on past 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 defining the proposed scope of the episode. 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 an outline of the proposed episode, 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 (Jacksonville State University) at



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