The Mid-Atlantic Popular & American Culture Association (MAPACA), a regional organization of the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association (PCA/ACA), is an academic organization dedicated to critical analysis of various aspects of popular and American culture. MAPACA’s membership is open to all individuals (academics, students, and independent scholars) who share an interest in gathering to talk about the issues and events that affect cultural construction and production, often in ways that connect and collide across disciplinary boundaries.
A brief history by Ralph Donald
The band of scholars now known as the Mid-Atlantic Popular & American Culture Association had its first conference in Baltimore in 1990. Although an attempt at creating an association a few years earlier was not successful, the Baltimore conference and subsequent annual meetings were successful, and MAPACA was born. Marie Campbell of Mount Saint Mary’s College was the first MAPACA president. Other members of the board in the early years were James Shokoff, SUNY Fredonia; Anne Kaler, Gwynedd Mercy College; The Rev. Ed Ingebretsen, Georgetown University; Ron Ambrosetti, SUNY Fredonia; Bill Mistichelli, Penn State University and John Matviko, West Liberty State College. These founding members and many others who joined MAPACA later worked tirelessly through the years to make the organization a strong regional presence in the PCA/ACA universe.
Stanley Blair of James Madison University wrote the first MAPACA constitution. Ralph Donald also joined the board in 1990 as a member and as editor and publisher of the organization’s new juried academic journal, the Mid-Atlantic Almanack, which published its first edition in 1992. Six yearly editions later, Ralph stepped aside, and other faithful MAPACA members stepped in to edit the journal: Margaret King, Ted Bain, Ralph Donald again for another three years, then Tom Kitts and Gary Earl Ross. Scores of MAPACA members have served as associate editors through the 20 years of the Almanack’s existence, reviewing manuscripts for their peers.