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The Appalachian Studies Association was formed in 1977 by a group of scholars, teachers, and regional activists who believed that shared community has been and will continue to be important to those writing, researching, and teaching about Appalachia.

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The ASA is headquartered at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. Mary Thomas, Executive Director, and Christopher Leadingham, Office Manager, can be reached via email at and, respectively.

Telephone: (304) 696-2904
Fax: (304) 696-6221
Mailing Address:
    Appalachian Studies Association
    One John Marshall Drive
    Huntington, WV 25755

39th ASA Annual Conference

Voices from the Misty Mountains: Diversity and Unity, a New Appalachia

March 18-20, 2016

Shepherd University,
Shepherdstown, West Virginia

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39th Annual ASA Conference

Voices from the Misty Mountains: Diversity and Unity, a New Appalachia
March 18-20, 2016

Shepherd University
Shepherdstown, West Virginia


Sylvia Bailey Shurbutt, Conference Chair and Local Arrangements Chair
304.876.3119 or 304.876.5207

Rachael Meads, Program Chair

We invite participation in the 39th annual Appalachian Studies Conference organized by the Appalachian Studies Association. This year’s theme is “Voices from the Misty Mountains: Diversity and Unity, a New Appalachia.” We especially invite presentations that focus on the changing face of the region; the diverse groups that constitute who we are; the educational and community institutions that either accommodate or react to the changes that challenge us and call for our best selves; and the grass-roots efforts to protect the very mountains that are the principal source of our commonality and identity.

Formats might include: individual scholarly research papers and sessions; formed sessions; poster sessions presenting scholarly research OR documenting community work; panels and community presentations; performance or sharing of films, documentaries, videos, poetry, music, plays, art, and writing; roundtable conversations on contemporary issues, e.g. activism in the region; professional development, or a newcomer’s orientation to Appalachian studies.

The 2016 Call for Participation is now available. Proposals may be submitted via Marshall Digital Scholar beginning September 1 through October 15, 2015.

Research in Action

Submit to the Journal of Appalachian Studies

The Journal is always accepting manuscript submissions for consideration. The JAS welcomes any serious scholarship on Appalachia, the region, or its people. Anyone interested in submitting should refer to the submission guidelines and requirements. >> Read more

ASA in Classroom

Updated K-12 Educational Resources

Bring the study of Appalachian topics and perspectives into your K-12 Classroom with our updated list of resources. >> More

Volunteer with the ASA

The ASA needs you! Why? Because the ASA depends on volunteers who donate their time and effort to run the organization, publish the JAS, and plan the annual conference. Check out our ASA Volunteer Form to see how you can help! >> Read more

Spring Newsletter Now Available!

The spring 2013 issue of Appalink is now available online. Check it out by clicking here. >> Read more

ASA Video

In case you missed the Thirty-Seventh Annual ASA Conference in Huntington, WV, March 28-30, 2014, live stream video of the keynote address and two of the plenaries are available at the links below.

Keynote Address: “Our Secret Places in the Waiting World: Becoming a New Appalachia” by Silas House

Plenary I: “Me? An Appalachian Stereotype? I Thought my Stories Worked Against That” by Adam Booth and Rebecca Hill

Plenary II: “Appalachian Women, A Herstory of Oppression and Resistance” by Sue Massek

News and Announcements

A Conversation with Photographer Builder Levy

Click here to listen to an interview with Builder Levy, which originally aired on Inside Appalachia, West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

A selection of Builder Levy’s work will be exhibited at the upcoming conference in Shepherdstown.

2016 Conference Call for Participation

Click here to download the Call for Participation for the 39th Annual ASA Conference, to be held March 18-20 at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.

New Gates-Carawan Artist Award

The Gates-Carawan Artist Award recognizes an individual for artistic potential or artistic contributions to Appalachia in the realms of visual, oral, musical, literary, or other arts. With this award, the ASA seeks to recognize and cultivate artists who are working in the spirit of the award's namesakes, independent filmmaker Bob Gates and activist musicians Guy and Candie Carawan—socially conscious artists who supported and encouraged the work of other regional artists.

The winner will receive a physical award produced by a regional artist and either a $500 stipend (for artistic contributions) or the guidance of a mentor (for artistic potential). Nominations may come from any ASA member. Nominators of a winning candidate with artistic potential will be strongly encouraged to develop a mentoring plan with the winning artist.

Nominations may come from any ASA member. Submission requirements are detailed on the awards page. Send nomination materials to Scott Goebel, Gates-Carawan Artist Award Selection Committee Chair,, by December 1.

Summer 2015 Y'ALL newsletter

Check out Y'ALL's Summer 2015 newsletter to find out about Y'ALL opportunities.

Updated 2015 ASA Handbook

View the updated ASA Handbook for 2015 as a PDF (2.7 MB) or Word document (953 KB).

ASA members hit the airwaves

Check out this radio show featuring ASA members Chad Berry and Roger Guy discussing the Appalachian migration to Chicago on WBEZ 91.5!

Uptown's moment as a 'Hillbilly Heaven': Why tens of thousands of white Southern migrants made the North Side neighborhood home, only to leave a short time later.

New President-Elect

Debbie Zorn is the ASA President-Elect. Read more at the Urban Appalachian Community Coalition.

Remembering William Clark Lindley, Jr.

ASA Remembers William Clark Lindley, Jr. — written by Jordan L. Laney.

ASA Bylaw Changes

Changes to the ASA bylaws were approved by the membership at the annual ASA Membership Forum & Business Meeting on March 28, 2015, 11 – 12 p.m. in the D.P. Culp Center, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, Tennessee. Please see pages 5-7 of the spring 2015 issue of Appalink for a detailed listing.

Call for Papers for a Journal of Appalachian Studies Forum On Economic Development in Appalachia

The Journal of Appalachian Studies announces a special two-year forum on sustainable economic development in Appalachia, starting with the journal’s Spring 2016 (Vol 22, No 1) issue and ending with the Fall 2017 (Vol 23, No 2) issue.

We invite the submission of manuscripts dealing with practices relevant to sustainable economic development in Appalachian communities. We will consider a wide-range of scholarship from a variety of disciplines and applied fields. Manuscripts focusing on economic development theory, empirical and/or applied research, or narrative essays on development issues will be welcome. We also seek research, which compares Appalachia to other regions in the world.

Scholars are encouraged to submit papers addressing, but not limited to, the following topics:

Tourism and developmentSocial capital, trust, politics, and development
InfrastructureBroadband and technology
Education, labor, capital, and developmentFunding community and economic development
EntrepreneurshipPlace-based development
Local food movementsDowntown development
Local currencyLand ownership
Environmental capital and sustainable developmentGender and development
Taxes and developmentThe creative class in Appalachia
Vision-buildingPublic participation methods
Health care and its effects on developmentGlobalization
The CommonsPrivatization and neoliberalism
Cooperatives, non-profits, employee-owned businessCredit, access to capital
Out- and in-migration and developmentSocial change, policy and movements

The deadline for manuscripts to be considered for publication for the Spring 2016 issue is July 1, 2015. The deadline for the Fall 2016 issue is February 1, 2016; the Spring 2017 deadline is July 1, 2016; and the Fall 2017 issue deadline is February 1, 2017.

Articles should be submitted electronically to the JAS online manuscript submission portal. This secure, personalized resource will allow you to track your manuscript through each step of the review and acceptance process. To get started, and view manuscript submission guidelines, visit the Journal's submissions page. Questions about the forum and/or the review process should be directed to the Journal’s Editor, Shaunna Scott, at or to the Forum’s Special Editor, Will Hatcher, at