SASA presents new developments and findings in American Studies scholarship; identifies and defines areas of debate about the nature of American culture and its study; and conducts cultural and historical programs on the South and its communities. Conference themes are broad and inclusive to encompass topics such as art and architecture, black literature and music, American Studies as cultural critique, the cultural uses of photography, Native American Studies, popular culture, Southern literature, and women's studies. Younger scholars in American Studies and related disciplines are encouraged to regard SASA meetings as an appropriate entry-level professional experience. SASA also holds smaller, informal board meetings at the ASA annual conventions and sponsors annual joint meetings with SAMLA and the Southern Historical Association.
SASA covers the following geographic region: Virginia (zip codes 224-246), West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana.