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American Studies

Professional Associations

Professional Associations

American Historical Association (AHA) 

  • The American Historical Association is the largest professional organization serving historians in all fields and all professions. The AHA is a trusted voice advocating for history education, the professional work of historians, and the critical role of historical thinking in public life.

The American Literature Association (ALA) 

  • The American Literature Association is committed to exploring the richness and diversity of American writing and welcomes all forms of scholarship. It is not limited to any specific critical methodology or dogma. The American Literature Association recognizes the importance of encouraging a wide variety of approaches, both established and innovational, to the study of American authors, including biographical and historical studies of an author’s life and times, bibliographical examinations and close readings of literary texts, as well as all other critical approaches.

The American Studies Association (ASA) 

  • The American Studies Association promotes the development and dissemination of interdisciplinary research on U.S. culture and history in a global context. Its purpose is to support scholars and scholarship committed to original research, critical thinking, and public dialogue. We are researchers, teachers, students, writers, curators, community organizers, and activists from around the world committed to the study and teaching of U.S. history and culture from multiple perspectives.

Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) 

  • The mission of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, Inc. (ASALH) is to promote, research, preserve, interpret, and disseminate information about Black life, history and culture to the global community. The vision of the association is to be the premier Black Heritage and learned society with a diverse and inclusive membership supported by a strong network of national and international branches to continue the Woodson legacy.

The National Council for Black Studies (NCBS) 

  • NCBS was formed out of the substantial need for a national stabilizing force in the developing discipline of Africana/Black Studies. The roots of NCBS run deep in the evolutionary growth of the discipline given that the organization was formed only seven years after the establishment of the first Black Studies Program in the United States. Today, the purpose of the NCBS is multidimensional and the scope of its functioning is quite broad. As an organization created and sustained primarily by students and their teachers, NCBS is committed to academic excellence and social responsibility.

Organization of American Historians (OAH) 

  • The OAH is an association of historians dedicated to the promotion of teaching and scholarship about the history of the United States both before and after its formation as a nation-state. The organization pursues these goals by encouraging and supporting excellence in historic research, interpretation, and publication; advancing the teaching and practice of American history at all levels and in all settings; promoting the widest possible access to historical sources and scholarship and the widest possible discussion of historical questions and controversies, including advocacy for professional scholarly standards where appropriate; generating support for the preservation, dissemination, and exhibition of sources dealing with the history of the United States; and encouraging respectful and equitable treatment for all practitioners of history.

The Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association (PCA/ACA) 

  • The mission of the Popular Culture Association is to promote the study of popular culture throughout the world through the establishment and promotion of conferences, publications, and discussion. The PCA actively tries to identify and recruit new areas of scholarly exploration and to be open to new and innovative ideas. PCA is both inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary.

Western Literature Association (WLA)

  • Founded in 1965, the Western Literature Association (WLA) is a non-profit, scholarly association that promotes the study of the diverse literature and cultures of the North American West, past and present. ince its founding, the WLA has served to publish scholarship and promote work in the field; it has gathered together scholars, artists, environmentalists, and community leaders who value the West’s literary and cultural contributions to American and world cultures; it has recognized those who have made a major contribution to western literature and western studies; and it has fostered student learning and career advancement in education.

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