Professor to Help Sustain Small Scholarly Societies

Meredith Goldsmith, a professor of English, is part of a collaboration led by West Virginia University that is seeking to establish a consortium of small scholarly societies in the humanities.

Goldsmith, assistant to the president for strategic initiatives, is a co-principal investigator on the project, which is being funded by a 12-month, $59,500 planning grant by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Cheryl E. Ball, an associate professor of digital publishing studies and director of the Digital Publishing Institute at West Virginia University, is serving as the lead principal investigator.

Goldsmith will serve as an expert in small scholarly societies based on her longstanding experience on the board of the Edith Wharton Society and as editor of the Edith Wharton Review.

“It’s often difficult for small societies to publish their scholarship — especially those with no institutional home — and we want to keep this aspect of the scholarly landscape going; to create a more diverse landscape of scholarly work,” Goldsmith says.

“Many Voices: Building a Consortium of Small Scholarly Societies in the Humanities” seeks to develop a plan to preserve, sustain, and enhance the work of small scholarly societies (1,000 members or less) and explore ways to consolidate administrative, financial, technical, and related society tasks so that they can focus on their scholarly knowledge-making and communicative goals.

A scholar of late 19th and early 20th century American women’s writing, Goldsmith has published numerous articles in scholarly journals, and she is a co-editor of Edith Wharton and Cosmopolitanism (University Press of Florida, 2016). In 2015-16, she held a Mellon-funded Humanities Writ Large Fellowship at Duke University and is also a former Fulbright Scholar. —By Ed Moorhouse