NOTICES & QUERIES

To post a CFP, make an announcement, or ask a question of the Bierce community, please submit your message to bierce@psu.edu.

July 23, 2011

Due to the low volume of submissions during 2009 and 2010, the ABP Journal is now on hiatus.  Those scholars wishing to contribute a project to the ABP Resources should contact the editor. Thank you.  

June 10, 2009

QUERY: Is it true that Bierce once wrote, "War is God's way of teaching Americans geography"? If so, when did he write it and what was its original place of publication?

ANSWER: Although almost always attributed to him, the geography quotation is unlikely to have originated with Bierce. Bierce scholars (myself included) have failed to find this witticism in any of his fiction, memoirs, or journalism. While it's possible that he did write or say something of the sort, we have no evidence to substantiate it.

As described in the book The Quote Verifier by Ralph Keyes (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2006), the Bierce scholar David E. Schultz believes the quotation has a far more recent heritage. Schultz concludes that the quotation actually derives from a comedy routine delivered in 1987 by the actor/comedian Paul Rodriguez. Rodriguez was quoted in the LA Times as saying: "War is God’s way of teaching us geography." (Note that this version does not mock Americans explicitly.)

My guess is that the line simply evolved over the last 20 years, gaining popularity with the added knock against Americans' understanding of the larger world.  The misattribution is not surprising, as the modified line sounds like something Bierce would say.  And of course, some readers may prefer the idea that Bierce -- and not a stand-up comic -- produced this clever sentiment.

So in sum, the quotation is probably not something that Bierce wrote or said.  By contrast, the line was said by Rodriguez, and probably did originate with him. -- C.W.

May 20, 2009

The Fall 2008 issue of the ABP Journal has been released.

June 1, 2007

The MLA International Bibliography has announced that it will index all past and future issues of the ABP Journal.

The MLA International Bibliography, the most widely distributed humanities database, is the preeminent reference work in the fields of literature, language, linguistics, folklore, ethnomusicology, and teaching. The bibliography lists over 1.5 million citations, and is available worldwide in print, online, and on CD-ROM.  

August 8, 2006

The Ambrose Bierce Project has joined NINES, a Networked Interface for Nineteenth-Century Electronic Scholarship. This federation of nine projects and archives is comprised of the Victorian Studies Bibliography, the Poetess Archive, the Whitman Bibliography, the Swinburne Project, the Ambrose Bierce Project, the Dante Gabriel Rossetti Archive, Romantic Circles Praxis, British Women Romantic Poets, and the Charles Chesnutt Archive.

NINES has released Collex 1.0, aggregating nearly 45,000 digital objects from these projects in 19th-century literature and culture. Through Collex 1.0, users can:

perform text searches on finding aids for all 45,000 digital objects in the system;

search full-text content across participating sites (currently Rossetti, Swinburne, and Poetess);

browse common metadata fields (dates, genres, names, etc.) across all objects in a non-hierarchical, faceted manner;

constrain their search and browse operations to generate highly-individualized results;

create personal accounts on the system to save and share their research work;

publicly tag, privately annotate, and ultimately "collect" digital objects
located through Collex or in browsing NINES-affiliated sites;

browse their own and others' collections in an integrated sidebar interface;

and discover new, related objects of interest through the Collex "more like this" feature.

A 2.0 release of Collex, planned for December of this year, will refine many social-software aspects of the tool and add an exhibit-builder, through which users can re-purpose the digital objects they've discovered and collected into multimedia presentations, annotated bibliographies, course syllabi, and more.

The Collex can be found at http://www.nines.org/collex/

March 3, 2006

The Ambrose Bierce Project (http://www.ambrosebierce.org) is a hypermedia project and peer-reviewed e-journal hosted by Penn State University. To prepare for the second issue of the journal (fall 2006), we are now seeking essays and literary briefs about the writings of Ambrose Bierce and his contemporaries. Submissions will be reviewed by members of the ABP advisory board, a collection of leading Bierce scholars and Americanists.
 
Literary briefs will offer a critical perspective on a *single* Bierce story or work of nonfiction prose. Briefs should not exceed 2,000 words, but should include scholarly notes. Deadline: 5/1/06.
 
Full essays should fall between 5,000 and 12,000 words. We welcome original essays relating to the life and works of Ambrose Bierce, his contemporaries, and United States history and culture of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Interdisciplinary studies are encouraged. Deadline for abstracts (with short CV): 4/15/06.

Please submit queries, abstracts, completed briefs, and book review proposals to the editor, Craig A. Warren, at bierce_at_psu.edu.
 
Correspondence may also be directed to:

Craig A. Warren, Editor
The Ambrose Bierce Project
School of Humanities & Social Sciences
Irvin Kochel Center
Penn State Erie, The Behrend College
5091 Station Rd.
Erie, PA 16563


February 28, 2005


The Ambrose Bierce Project (ABP) is a forthcoming hypermedia project hosted by Penn State University. As part of its initial phase, the ABP is seeking essays and literary briefs about the Civil War fiction and nonfiction war writings of Ambrose Bierce. Submissions will be peer-reviewed by ABP affiliates and by members of the advisory board, a collection of leading Bierce scholars.

Literary briefs will offer a critical perspective on a *single* Bierce story or work of nonfiction prose. Briefs should not exceed 2,000 words, but should include scholarly notes. Deadline: 5/1/05.

Full essays should fall between 5,000 and 12,000 words, and may examine any dimension of Bierce's life and work as it relates to the American Civil War. We are especially interested in interdisciplinary studies. Deadline for abstracts (with short CV): 4/15/05.

Please submit queries, completed briefs, and essay abstracts to the editor, Craig A. Warren, at bierce_at_psu.edu.

Correspondence may also be directed to:

Craig A. Warren, Editor
The Ambrose Bierce Project
School of Humanities & Social Sciences
Irvin Kochel Center
Penn State Erie, The Behrend College
5091 Station Rd.
Erie, PA 16563