Laura Ingalls Wilder: Global Migration and Midwestern Sensibilities

Thanks for your interest in creating space for the important and complicated conversations we need to have about immigration in Wisconsin.

Emily Anderson is a writer, literary scholar and City Council member in her hometown of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Emily’s writing has appeared in a wide variety of publications such as The Atlantic, Harper’s, and McSweeney’s.  She is the author of two books, Little: Novels and Fifteen and Change (using the pen name Max Howard). In 2017, she earned her PhD in English from SUNY-Buffalo. Her research interests include American literature, women’s writing and children’s literature.


Laura Ingalls Wilder is an American icon, known for her novels about her family’s experience as American pioneers in the 1870s.  But does her Little House on the Prairie series have meaning for today’s immigrants and refugees to the Midwest?  Indeed it does.  Now the themes of courage, hard work, and dedication to family and tradition play out in modern riffs, such as hit Canadian TV series Little Mosque on the Prairie and Minneapolis-based blog Little Laos on the Prairie. Contemporary immigrants have adapted the iconic pioneer girl’s story about overland migration to explore current immigration controversies, facts, and myths.  In this talk, Anderson will open a discussion about how immigration is perceived today in light of American history, ideals, and representations in pop culture.

We want to help! Contact us today to get started!

  • We ask that events be free and open to the public. They must take place before November 1, 2019.
  • We will connect you with Emily Anderson so you can work with her to find a date and time that works.
  • You will be required to fill out an online form to secure your reservation by September 15, 2019.
  • The Wisconsin Humanities Council will pay Emily Anderson an honorarium; there will be no cost to your organization.
  • We ask that you credit the Wisconsin Humanities Council in your promotions.
  • Please aim for 20+ audience members. We can share resources to help with event promotion.
  • You will be required to fill out a Host Evaluation Form after the event.
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