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The British Association for American Studies was founded in 1955. It exists to promote, support and encourage the study of the United States in the Universities, Colleges and Schools of the United Kingdom, and by independent scholars. It welcomes application forms from all those engaged in or connected with the study of the United States.

Welcome to the website for the British Association for American Studies. The website is intended to be the hub of the BAAS community with information on our awards, annual conferences, schools’ liaison work, calls for papers, publications, job listings, related research networks and a media contacts database through which we can share our expertise and increase our visibility. We continue to include BAAS news, resources and links, as well as information on our committee structures.

*LETTER TO BAAS MEMBERS FROM SUE CURRELL, CHAIR OF BAAS*

Dear BAAS members,

It is with pleasure that I attach the latest issue of the BAAS newsletter, American Studies in Britain. In the past you have received this in print and by post twice per year. A non-print version of ASIB is just the start of several aims to update our publications and communications activities and reduce our costs. Over the coming year we will be focusing our attention on upgrading the website and our social media communications and hope to create an online space that represents the liveliness and range of our membership interests.

It has been a busy time for the BAAS Publications committee, with a changeover in editorship for the Journal of American Studies taking place in January 2015, as well as a forthcoming relaunch for US Studies Online (the postgraduate journal) and a new series of BAAS paperbacks commissioned by Edinburgh University Press. Likewise, our Awards committee is continuing to administer the huge range of prestigious awards that we make available to our members (see ASIB for some of the reports these generated last year). Also busy, the Conferences committee has its sights on big plans for 2018. For your diaries, the next three Annual conferences will be at the Universities of Birmingham (2014), Northumbria (2015), and Belfast (2016). Future plans are to make the conference shorter to facilitate attendance and reduce costs. The draft programme of the annual conference to be held in Birmingham, 10-13 April is available through the BAAS Conference “button” on the top right of this site. Do take a look at it even if you can’t attend: BAAS represents a wide community of interdisciplinary scholars and the exciting range of panels illustrates the current diversity and liveliness of our field. At the conference we will be looking for several new members for the Executive committee, including a BAAS Secretary to take over from the wonderful Jo Gill, whose term expires. Please get in touch for more information about the role or about standing — the nomination forms are in ASIB. If you cannot come to all of the conference, try to come for a day to attend some of these fantastic panels or take part in the AGM elections.

Your support for BAAS helps us to promote American Studies here in the UK and enables us to continue highlighting that the study of America is an important intellectual pursuit with academic and public significance. This is as important as ever in the changing arena of Higher Education, and I believe that our activism to raise the profile of American studies and generate interest in our work can affect areas such as the allocation of research funding, REF assessment, as well as postgraduate funding.

Please get in touch with any member news, achievements or announcements to include in my Chairs report in April. I look forward to seeing some of you in Birmingham and to hearing any suggestions that will help us become more effective in our advocacy role for the BAAS community.

Chair of BAAS 2013-6: Dr Sue Currell (University of Sussex)

For more information about Sue and American Studies at the University of Sussex follow this link.