Welcome to the Charles W. Chesnutt Association

80+ short stories. 3 novels (and 6 more unpublished). Essay, speeches, a biography of Frederick Douglass. Chesnutt’s writings are remarkably varied in genre, style, and voice.  As archival materials and correspondence reveal, he worked at his craft, revising and reshaping work again and again.  He was also prolific. Writing in every genre, he probed deeply and imaginatively, with both an ethical sense and a capacity for play, some of the most complex issues in American society. 

The Charles Chesnutt Association welcomes all.  Join us.

News and Announcements

Call for Papers: The Charles W. Chesnutt Association welcomes abstracts (of no more than 300 words) for presentation at two sessions on the work of Chesnutt at the 2022 ALA conference in Chicago. May 26-29, 2022.

Session One: Chesnutt’s Influences

There has for decades been very productive work done on the influences that helped shape Chesnutt’s work—literary, historical, and cultural contexts that informed Chesnutt’s writing.  While we are open to further examples of this kind of scholarship, we are especially interested in what is less often explored: Chesnutt’s influence as a writer and thinker on writers, both his contemporaries and future authors.  How did other writers think about and respond to the work and career of Chesnutt?  Where can we see Chesnutt’s legacy showing up after the height of his popularity at the turn-of-the-twentieth century? 

Session Two: Teaching Chesnutt

We invite submissions on all topics related to the teaching of Chesnutt’s work.  We are especially interested in approaches that open up new ways to approach his work and non-traditional pedagogies, such as project-based learning, team teaching, civic/community partnerships, digital humanities projects, archival work, etc.  This panel is intended to be generative for everyone, so rather than looking very idiosyncratic or personal teaching strategies, we seek pedagogical approaches to Chesnutt’s work that will help us all think about how to teach this challenging and exciting author.

Please email an abstract (of no more than 300 words) and a brief (1-2 page) CV by January 15, 2022, to program chair, Bill Hardwig, whardwig@utk.edu.


Lorraine Hansberry worked for years on turning Chesnutt’s The Marrow of Tradition into a play.