The End of Austin Publishes “Sheltering In a Weird Place: Notes from a Quarantined Austin”

Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 10.33.54 AM

The End of Austin, a digital humanities project housed in the UT Department of American Studies, recently published “Sheltering in a Weird Place: Notes from Quarantined Austin.” The collection features reflections on quarantine from writers throughout Austin, including several UT AMS graduate students, undergraduates, and faculty.

“They’re like dispatches from a surreal battlefield,” TEOA editor Randy Lewis writes, “people cooped up, waiting, goofing off, scared out of their minds, lonely, going broke, thwarted, cautiously optimistic, and a thousand other feelings that are bubbling up in neighborhoods under the violet crown.”

You can read “Sheltering in a Weird Place” here.




Announcement: New issue of The End of Austin released

Summer’s here, which means that the latest issue of The End of Austin, has been published. Here’s what editor and American Studies professor Randy Lewis had to say about this issue:

The big summer issue of our award-winning website is here: hipster hate, disappearing bees, unaffordable housing, exploited sex workers, weird slogans, dreams deferred, the fate of Barton Springs, rapidly changing neighborhoods, festival blues, documentary photography, Borges in Austin, and much more. The new issue features 25 original pieces from writers, photographers, and activists who are talking about life in the fastest growing city in the US. Check it out and share us on social media (nothing helps us more than that simple act).

For more information, check The End of Austin on Facebook and on Twitter.

The End of Austin: Brendan Gaughen’s work featured by The Criterion Collection


The most recent issue of The End of Austin turned some heads, to say the very least. The publication skyrocketed from just over 50,000 views to over 70,000 in just three weeks thanks to the incredible work of the many contributors to the latest issue. One of these pieces, Slacker Geography, 25 Years Later by American Studies Ph.D. candidate Brendan Gaughen, inspired a whole host of attention from the city’s residents (past and present) and film buffs.

We’re thrilled that both Brendan and The End of Austin nabbed some very positive feedback. Among these plaudits were an Alcalde piece about his work as well as a quick piece from The Criterion Collection‘s blog. And be sure to check out the comment thread at Brendan’s original piece (linked above) for fascinating firsthand accounts from people who appeared in or worked on the film.

Talk about reaching the public through innovation and creativity. Nice work, Brendan!

The End of Austin Issue 5 Launches

_0152322983 smaller

We are pleased to announce that issue 5 of The End of Austin is now published.

Featuring the work of current UT American Studies Ph.D. candidates Brendan Gaughen and Jeannette Vaught, as well as Adam Tallman, David Villarreal, Megan Coxe, Andres Lombana Bermudez, Jack Murphy, Derek Sayer, Riley Triggs, Jonathan Silverman, Adrian Mesko, Monty Jones, Álvaro Torres, Daniel Perera, Jonathan Lowell, Emily Mixon, and Joy Luther, this issue addresses topics like Slacker 25 years later, shared services at UT, flooding in Onion Creek, the F-1 track, weirdness in Austin, cedar fever, and more.

2014 has been an exciting year already for the project. Having surpassed 50,000 unique page views, the site continues to gain momentum as an invaluable source for conversations about Austin’s changing identity. This year, we’ve been featured in a variety of national and international press outlets, including British Airways’s High Life Magazine and Bavarian Public Radio’s Bayern 2 for an hour-long feature about Austin – not to mention UT’s own The Daily Texan.

Members of the The End of Austin editorial board were also asked by the University of Texas to speak at the UT Chancellor’s Council Annual Meeting on May 2. Randy Lewis, Sean Cashbaugh, and Carrie Andersen gave a well-received lecture to nearly 200 donors about the project, the field of American Studies, and what they anticipate of Austin’s future.

We hope you enjoy this issue, available here – and please share it with anyone you know who may be interested in Austin’s metamorphosis.

AMS department members speak about The End of Austin at UT Chancellor’s Council Annual Meeting

Exciting news: earlier this May, three members of the American Studies department were asked to speak at the UT Chancellor’s Council Annual Meeting, held at the Frank Erwin Center. Dr. Randy Lewis, editor and founder of the project, and two of its editorial board members Carrie Andersen and Sean Cashbaugh discussed the website and engaged in a Q&A after their talk.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

See Dr. Lewis’s recap here:

Last week, Sean, Carrie and I had a remarkable opportunity to share our work on with the Chancellor’s Council, several hundred of the most generous donors to the UT system. We spoke for an hour about the website, describing how it grew out of an American Studies graduate seminar to become a digital humanities project with almost 50,000 page views for its first four issues. We celebrated TEOA as an example of doing more with less: as resources shrink at UT, faculty and grad students have scrambled to create low-cost, high impact projects that reach beyond the confines of the campus to engage a larger public. We had a great response from Chancellor’s Council, in part because so many people in the audience have the same hopes and fears about Austin that Sean and Carrie presented so effectively. It was great exposure for our project, the American Studies Department, and COLA generally, and we’re hopeful that it will lead to greater support for our project, which has so far existed with an annual budget of $100.

Submit to The End of Austin – Deadline May 15

For those of you who have some thoughts or feelings about Austin’s changing identity over the past several years, we encourage you to consider submitting a piece to The End of Austin, one of our department’s flagship digital humanities projects. See the call-for-submissions below.

We are pleased to invite your submissions to the fifth issue of The End of Austin, a digital humanities project housed in the Department of American Studies that explores Austin’s changing urban identity.

Our goal is to bring together different kinds of voices—academic, artistic, activist—to start an interdisciplinary conversation about life in the fastest growing city in the US. We are interested in original writing, photos, video, art, music—anything that illuminates how things are changing, ending, expiring, or collapsing in the midst of our growth-obsessed sunbelt burg. For additional information about the project, please see our press page.

We encourage submissions from all disciplines on the following topics (and welcome other proposals):

  • Traffic and transportation infrastructures (bus, urban rail, etc.)
  • Cedar fever and air quality
  • Droughts, floods, freezes, and weather issues
  • The proliferation of festivals of various kinds (e.g. SXSW, ACL, FunFunFunFest, PsychFest, Ice Cream Fest, Eeyore’s Birthday)
  • The Formula One track
  • The turnover of businesses and concerns about chains versus local businesses
  • Race, class, and gentrification
  • Cultures of leisure
  • Food culture and food trucks
  • The “Live Music Capital of the World” moniker
  • Weird anxiety and anxiety over weirdness
  • The rapidly changing cityscape, skyline, and exurban sprawl
  • The [administrative, pedagogical] future of the University of Texas
  • Representations of Austin in film, television, and other forms of popular expression
  • Drunk driving

Deadline for completed submissions is May 15, 2014. Please email inquiries and submissions to