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Ernest J. Gaines Center

Resources and Links

A Research Center

The Ernest J. Gaines Center is an international center for scholarship on Ernest Gaines and his work. The center honors the work of UL Lafayette’s Writer-in-Residence Emeritus, and provides a space for scholars and students to work with the Gaines papers and manuscripts. Research avenues have included:

Gaines' biography and book history Passing narratives Rural spaces
Gaines' writing process      Racial dynamics Temporality
Louisiana Studies Foodways Memory and nostalgia
Civil Rights Religiosity Gender and sexuality
Southern economics Sports and fan culture     Identity-creation

Student Opportunities

Graduate students have the opportunity to work for the Gaines Center as a part of their assistantship. Gaines Center assistants enjoy autonomy in task-completion, and often hold their positions for their tenure at UL—establishing an in-depth understanding of Gaines’ life and work, as well as relevant historical and cultural contexts. Assistantships bolster students' own research and teaching, and professonalize them through the following work:

  • Archival (digitize collections; inventory and catalogue donated items; archival programs)
  • Curatorial (give class tours, research and annotate pedagogical materials for instructors)
  • Scholarly (present materials at various classes, meetings, events, and conferences)
  • Managerial (build purchase orders; use of Word, Excel, and Trello; transcribe meeting minutes)
  • Outreach (maintain social media; contact other departments; organize Books from the Bayou)