Middle West Review: An Interdisciplinary Journal about the American Midwest

Middle West Review: An Interdisciplinary Journal about the American Midwest

Edited by Jon K. Lauck
David Grabitske and Jennifer Stinson, Associate Editors 

ISSN 2372-5664

eISSN 2372-5672

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The Middle West Review is an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal focused on studying the American Midwest, a “lost region” which has received far less scholarly attention than other American regions. Middle West Review is the only scholarly print publication dedicated exclusively to the study of the Midwest as a region. It provides a forum for scholars and non-scholars alike to explore the meaning of Midwestern identity, history, geography, society, culture, and politics. Overall, the mission of the Middle West Review is to join with like-minded associations, historical societies, writers, and scholars to help revitalize the study of the American Midwest. The inaugural issue of the journal was published in the fall of 2014 and since 2019 Middle West Review has made the University of South Dakota its home. 

Table Of Contents


Volume 8, Number 2 (Spring 2022)
Special Symposium: The Jewish Midwest

Jon K. Lauck

Jewish “Iron Rangers”: Jewish Settlement on Minnesota’s Iron Range
Marilyn J. Chiat

“There Are No Cultural Islands like Ceshinsky’s”: Ceshinsky’s Community Bookstore and Intellectual Space in Chicago, 1922–1966
Erin Faigin 

Eyzehu M’koman Shel Zevakhim? [What is the Site of the Ritual Sacrifice?]: Yiddish Writers Encounter the Chicago Meatpacking Industry
Jessica Kirzane

Culture and Politics in Cleveland’s Hebrew Cultural Garden
Sean Martin

“Minneapolis: The Curious Twin”: A Reexamination
Laura Weber

Book Reviews
Kerry Pimblott, Faith in Black Power: Religion, Race, and Resistance in Cairo, Illinois
Samantha Horton

Sara Egge, Woman Suffrage and Citizenship in the Midwest, 1870–1920
Bonnie Laughlin-Schultz

Kristopher Maulden, The Federalist Frontier: Settler Politics in the Old Northwest, 1783–1840
Patrick Allan Pospisek

Jane Ann Moore and William F. Moore, Owen Lovejoy and the Coalition for Equality: Clergy, African Americans, and Women United for Abolition
Rochelle E. Danquah

Jonathan Wright and Dawson Barrett, Punks in Peoria: Making a Scene in the American Heartland
David Woken

Book Review Essay
Goths and Visigoths: Jon Hassler and the Midwestern Moral Universe
Jon K. Lauck

Media Reviews
Detroit, dir. Kathryn Bigelow, 2017
Jacob DeBrock

Breaking Away, dir. Peter Yates, 1979
Sheng-mei Ma

Internal/Rural Disaster and Recovery in Take Shelter (dir. Jeff Nichols, 2011)
Matthew Sorrento

An Interview with Pulitzer-Prize Winning Journalist, Farah Stockman

An Interview with Iowa’s Poet Laureate, Debra Marquart

Midwestern Fashion Pioneer: Virgil Abloh, 1980–2021
Holly M. Kent

A Poet of the Midwest: Robert Bly, 1926–2021
David R. Pichaske

How the Midwest Shaped the Way We Bank: Early Twentieth-Century Banking Politics
Christopher W. Shaw

Submissions & Book Reviews

Statement of Publishing Ethics

The Middle West Review accepts submissions on a rolling basis. We encourage readers to contribute original content that deepens the public’s understanding of the American Midwest in an accessible and thoughtful manner. Some examples of submission types include:

Articles and Essays
Scholarly articles or essays should run roughly 8,000-12,000 words and articulate a central thesis about an important aspect of the Midwest. These works should build upon original research or new interpretations of existing sources and advance a unique argument pertaining to the American Midwest and, when appropriate, rely on proper citations and a footnote apparatus. Authors are advised to review earlier issues of Middle West Review to better understand the type of articles published by the journal.

Photo Essays
These projects should incorporate original photographs of or about the Midwest. We ask contributors to also include a description of each photograph and a brief written explanation (100 to 200 words) of their significance as a body of work.

Book Reviews: Middle West Review is eager to review new books related to the Midwest and to publish review essays which discuss groupings of recent books about the Midwest. Book review inquiries should be directed to Jennifer Stinson: jstinson@svsu.edu

Other types of submissions will be also considered. All contributions will undergo a process of peer review spearheaded by the Middle West Review editors and executive board.

Submissions will either be accepted for publication outright, returned with a request to “revise and resubmit,” or rejected outright. All submissions will benefit from the comments and revisions of the Middle West Review editors and its editorial reviewers.

Stylistic Guidelines
Authors should consult the Chicago Manual of Style as they prepare to submit their manuscripts to Middle West Review. Works should use endnotes in accordance with that manual’s specifications. Please Times New Roman 12-point font. All written submissions should be double-spaced and have one-inch margins on all sides. Manuscripts should be clear, concise, and devoid of jargon. Refrain from using the first person or passive voice. Successful submissions will marshal a strong argument buttressed by adequate evidence, thoughtful analysis, and lucid prose. Furthermore, in keeping with the journal’s mission, manuscripts should use the Midwest as a category of analysis and seek to explain why their project matters for the study of this region.

Please feel free to submit your materials at any time to MWR@USD.edu. You can also send any questions about submissions and other matters to that address.

Editorial Board


Jon K. Lauck, University of South Dakota

Associate Editors

David Grabitske, South Dakota State Historical Society 

Jennifer Stinson, Saginaw Valley State University 

Assistant Associate Editor

Hannah Redder, New York University 

Executive Editors

Richard J. Jensen, Montana State University–Billings

Paula Nelson, University of Wisconsin at Platteville

Gregory L. Schneider, Emporia State University

Editorial Board

William Barillas, University of Wisconsin–La Crosse

Megan Birk, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

James F. Brooks, University of California–Santa Barbara

Jason Duncan, Aquinas College

David F. Good, University of Minnesota–Twin Cities

Jeffrey Helgeson, Texas State University

Wallace A. Hettle, University of Northern Iowa

R. Douglas Hurt, Purdue University

Suzzanne Kelley, North Dakota State University Press

Rebecca J. Kinney, Bowling Green State University

Sara A. Kosiba, Kent State University

Gregory Rose, The Ohio State University at Marion

Matthew Sanderson, Kansas State University

Andrew Seal, University of New Hampshire

Book Review Editor

Jonathan Kasparek, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Media Review Editor

Adam Ochonicky, University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh


Middle West Review seeks applications for the post of Editor-in-Chief and Associate Editor. The EIC oversees and coordinates all operations of publishing MWR, including; assigning manuscript submissions to evaluators; communicating with authors; communicating with MWR’s publisher; signing off on accepted manuscripts; chairing the meetings of the Executive Board; keeping records of the actions of the Executive Board and insuring that complete and accurate records for MWR are maintained.      
An Associate Editor performs a range of tasks relating to the day-to-day operations of MWR, but this position in particular will focus on copyediting. MWR seeks a copyeditor with a knowledge of the Chicago Manual of Style, who can use Track Changes for editing, who has experience in communicating with authors about revisions, and who is an effective proofreader. 
Interested parties should submit a letter of intent and a CV to the chair of the journal's Executive Board, Paula Nelson, by September 19, 2022: nelsonp1951@yahoo.com  

Sponsoring Society

Middle West Review is affiliated with the Midwestern History Association. Upon joining the MHA, members will receive Middle West Review for free. Join on the MHA page on this website.


Reading List: Migration

This list of peer-reviewed materials features articles on many topics spanning Globalization, Genocide, Religion, Diaspora Communities, and other aspects on the topic of Migration.

Reading List: Willa Cather

This list of peer-reviewed articles & reviews centers on the work of acclaimed author (and UNL alum) Willa Cather. Known for her novels on the pioneer experience, her works are reexamined here through the lens of modern-day academics.

Reading List: Social Media

As online communities continue to widen their reach, so too does our list of peer-reviewed articles on various subjects including Journalism, Communal Narrative, Activism, Marketing, and Image Rehabilitation.

Reading List: Sports-Related Controversies, Social Issues, and Scandals

This sprawling list includes peer-reviewed articles on subjects as diverse as the fields of play they revolve around, including Violence in Sports, Gambling & Game Fixing, Drugs & Banned Substances, Mascots & Offensive Imagery, and other controversies.

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