Sauntering to UMF

UMF Faculty Member Kristen Case Named Editor of Prestigious Academic Journal on Thoreau

FARMINGTON, ME (January 25, 2012)—Kristen Case, University of Maine at Farmington assistant professor of English, has recently been named editor of the Concord Saunterer, the professional journal of the Thoreau Society—the oldest and largest organization devoted to an American author. During Case’s tenure as editor, the prestigious academic journal will be housed on the UMF campus. This will bring the journal to Maine—an important part of Thoreau’s life and work.

“Kristen Case is an outstanding scholar, and we are all excited that she has been named as editor of the Concord Saunterer,” said Daniel P. Gunn, UMF provost and vice president for academic affairs. “UMF is proud to be the new institutional home of this highly regarded journal.”

One of the most influential and eloquent writers of the 19th century, Henry David Thoreau was born in Concord, Massachusetts and educated at Harvard. His writings reflect his interest in simple living, the study of nature and the political struggles of his day. His book “Walden” is considered a masterpiece of American literature, and Thoreau is seen by many as an inspiration to today’s environmental movement.

Case’s term as editor of the Thoreau journal will begin with the upcoming volume. “This is a great honor, and I am so appreciative to the Thoreau Society for this opportunity,” said Case. “The Concord Saunterer is a unique publication in that it serves both dedicated Thoreau scholars and general readers interested in Thoreau. We publish material ranging from scholarly and technical articles to personal essays and poems. I’m very excited to be part of this wide-ranging and dynamic conversation.”

Case’s scholarly work on Thoreau, originally part of her Ph.D. dissertation, began in 2007 and has since become a major endeavor.  With it, Case has undertaken the transcription and publication of an online edition of Thoreau’s “Kalendar.” This previously unpublished work represents a decade worth of Thoreau’s scientific observations aimed at creating a biological timeline tracking the natural year.

Currently teaching courses in American literature, Case came to UMF in 2010. “I feel incredibly lucky to be working at UMF at this time,” said Case. “UMF is an institution that supports in-depth, interdisciplinary research and understands how important the experience of seeing this type of scholarship up close can be for students. “

Case’s book “American Pragmatism and Poetic Practice: Crosscurrents from Emerson to Susan Howe” (Camden House, 2011) was recently published. Her essays have appeared in The Robert Frost Review, Concord Saunterer and Southwest Review, among others. She previously taught at Lebanon Valley College, S.U.N.Y at Oneonta and Brooklyn College.