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Call for papers for the Ohio Valley History Conference “History Made Strange


October 15-17, 2020. Location and Accommodations: Western Kentucky University is located 70 minutes from Nashville International Airport. A block of rooms is available at the Hyatt Place adjacent to the WKU campus in Bowling Green, Kentucky, for a reduced rate of $124/night. Registration information will be posted on the conference website.


The Ohio Valley History Conference is open to historians and advanced graduate students from all time periods and specializations. This year’s theme, History Made Strange, will examine how other academic disciplines or intellectual frameworks can transform conventional wisdom about the past. Accordingly, the OVHC also invites scholars in other fields—including English, Art History, Economics, and more—to present work that engages with history from their own disciplinary vantage points. The OVHC accepts proposals for individual papers, full panels, roundtables, and volunteers to chair panels or provide comment. Traditional historical topics are welcome in addition to interdisciplinary proposals. Graduate students are particularly encouraged to attend and present.

Possible topics can include but are not limited to:

  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Public History
  • War and Peace
  • Labor History
  • Science and Technology
  • Digital Humanities
  • Race
  • Philosophy of History
  • Environmental Studies
  • Transnational History
  • Economic History
  • Visual Culture Studies

Keynote Speaker: We are proud to announce the keynote speaker will be Dr. Brooke Blower, Associate Professor of History, Boston University. The dinner and keynote will be on Friday, October 16 at 5:30pm. Dr. Blower’s research focuses on modern American politics, culture, and war. Her first book, Becoming Americans in Paris: Transatlantic Politics and Culture between the World Wars (Oxford University Press, 2011) won the Gilbert Chinard Prize from the Society for French Historical Studies and the James P. Hanlan Best Book Award from the New England Historical Association. Dr. Blower is currently writing a book that traces the lives and politics of seven American noncombatants and the missions that took them across the globe during World War II. Articles related to this project have appeared in the American Historical Review, Diplomatic History, and the book she co-edited with Mark P. Bradley, The Familiar Made Strange: American Icons and Artifacts after the Transnational Turn (Cornell University Press, 2015). With Sarah T. Phillips, Blower co-edits Modern American History, a Cambridge University Press journal that covers all aspects of United States history since the 1890s.


Submission Deadline: June 15, 2020.

Send proposals as a PDF attachment to Please include the name and affiliation of each participant as you would like it to appear in the program.

Submission Process: For panels, roundtables, or individual papers, please submit a 200‐word abstract of each paper and a 1‐2 page CV. Volunteers to chair sessions or provide comment should submit a 1‐2 page CV indicating areas of interest and expertise. All proposals should be submitted as PDF documents. For any questions, please contact conference organizer Dr. Alexander Olson at

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