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Open Cultural Studies
Peer-Reviewed Journal by De Gruyter Open
CFP: Black Womanhood in Popular Culture
Editors: Dr Katharina Gerund (Erlangen/Nürnberg); Dr Stefanie Schäfer (Jena)
contemporary popular culture, black womanhood frequently takes centre stage. It occupies an increasingly central place and articulates new and renewed dimensions, prompting questions about the status of black women in the cultural imaginary of the US and beyond. Most prominently, Michelle Obama’s First Ladyship has sparked scholarly and media discussions around the significance of stereotypes associated with black women, the possibilities and limitations of public figures to create new images and anchor them in the cultural imaginary, and about the subject positions and images that express and shape constructions of black womanhood (cf. Harris-Perry 2011, Schäfer 2015, Spillers 2009). Further examples include the pop singer Beyoncé, who has proclaimed her commitment to feminism and designed an already iconic celebration of black motherhood (concerning Afro-futurist tropes), wildly popular TV shows like Scandal or How to Get Away with Murder which feature black female protagonists, or literary works and feminist manifestos such as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah (2013) or We Should All Be Feminists (2014) and Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions (2017).
Our special issue aims to examine the multifaceted ideological implications of this proliferation of black womanhood in popular culture. We understand popular culture as a site where “collective social understandings are created” (cf. Stuart Hall 2009) and as a marketplace governed primarily by economic interests, but also trading in symbolic capital, identities, and collective fantasies. Popular culture thus may model new subject positions, unsettle cultural authorities, and question cultural ideals – intentionally or inadvertently so. The contributions to this special issue discuss representations and performances of black womanhood in the transatlantic sphere. They raise issues about the genealogies of these images and their empowering and limiting qualities, about the “affective agency” (Rebecca Wanzo) and subjecthood that black women claim and/or are assigned in these cultural productions, and about the signifying functions of the black female body in visual economies: How does contemporary popular culture negotiate, revise, or recalibrate stereotypical depictions of black women? How can representations of black womanhood be discussed from different theoretical vantage points, such as Afro-Pessimism, Critical Race Studies, Black Feminism? And how can they be positioned within new formations of the Black Atlantic, within (trans)national “affective economies” (Sara Ahmed) and contemporary discourses on race, class, gender, and age in the US and beyond?
Contributions may address a broad range of topics, pertaining to e.g. visual culture (comics, films, TV shows, etc.), material culture and bodily practices, literature, performances, or the arts. We welcome academic essays as well as images to our volume. Issues to be explored include but are not limited to:
· Black women as cultural agents
· Feminist agendas and their representation in cultural discourses
· Epistemologies of black womanhood and systems of knowledge production
· Afropessimisms and ontologies of black subjecthood
· Histories and genealogies of representing black womanhood
Studies in American Humor (StAH), a member of the Council of Editors of Learned Journals (CELJ), has published scholarly critical essays, review essays, and book reviews on all aspects of American humor since 1974. The premier journal for scholarship on humor, StAH addresses a wide spectrum of American humor, past and present. As a service to its audience of scholars and students in the humanities, especially literary, cultural, and media studies, StAH has featured an annual review of current scholarship, “The Year’s Work in American Humor Studies,” since 1999.
Submissions of essay manuscripts between 5000 and 8000 words are welcome on any topic, theme, practice, practitioner, and medium of American humor. StAH values transnational and interdisciplinary approaches as well as traditional critical and historical humanities scholarship. We are particularly interested in publishing essays on the visual humor of comics and animated cartoons; varieties of ethnic humor (African-American, Asian-American, Latinx, and Native American); online humor; television humor (late-night satire sketch comedy, and sit-coms); stand-up; vaudeville; and antebellum literary humor. One electronic copy of a manuscript should be submitted in Word or rtf format with documentation in Chicago endnote style following The Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition) to the journal’s online Editorial Manager portal http://www.editorialmanager.com/sah/; accompanying illustrations should be provided in jpg format. Additional details are available at our editorial portal and at <http://www.studiesinamericanhumor.org>. Authors are responsible for securing permissions if their accepted submissions contain copyrighted material beyond fair use.
The journal also invites individuals to send books for review; books and essays for our annual feature, “The Year’s Work in American Humor Studies”; and previously unpublished (or long lost) primary sources with short analytical essays for our occasional feature, “The Recovery Room.”
Essay submissions and other materials in electronic form for “The Recovery Room” should be submitted via the Editorial Manager portal at the address above. Please submit other publication queries to Lawrence Howe, Editor of Studies in American Humor, at StudiesinAmericanHumor@roosevelt.edu. Books and inquiries about book reviews should be sent to David Gillota, Associate Editor.
All contributors must be members in good standing of the American Humor Studies Association (AHSA) at the time of publication. Membership information is available via the AHSA website: <http://americanhumorstudiesassociation.wordpress.com/>.
Christy Zempter, Managing Editor, Studies in American Humor
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What is it about culture and society that creates an environment in which an athlete is able to excel or fail in his/her respective sport? Which factors, such as racism, discrimination, financial advantage or hardship, propel or hinder an athlete’s achievements? This volume seeks to explore how the world of sports is often a microcosm of the real world and the many ways in which it uniquely reflects cultural and societal issues. Abstracts are welcomed from all disciplines. Articles should either favor a historicist approach or be grounded in discourse analysis.
Abstract Due Dates: Preference will be given to abstracts received by October 15, 2017 and should be no longer than 300 words. Please also include a brief biographical statement and a CV. The book is going to be published by Universitas Press in spring 2018 (www.universitaspress.com).
Final manuscripts (no longer than 15,000 words, including Works Cited) should be submitted in MLA style, by December 15, 2017.
Send inquires and abstracts to: email@example.com
Eileen M. Angelini, Ph.D.
Fulbright Scholar and Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques
East VP and Newsletter Editor, Pi Delta Phi National French Honor Society
New York State Representative for Women in French
Routledge Books has requested a proposal for a sports media history anthology. The book will cover all periods and all forms of media and will serve as a standard reference for students, academics, and other interested professionals. The book will focus on the interplay of sports, media, and global culture at various points of history, with chapters that stress interpretive over descriptive writing. Interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary perspectives are welcome.
If you have something that you would consider appropriate to the project, I would love to hear about it. I was wanting to get all the abstracts in by Oct. 15. If you could e-mail a 300-word proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org by then, that would be great. If you need additional guidance and interaction before you fully develop your proposal, I’m also available.
Let me know if you have any questions. And if you know of anyone who would be interested in this project, feel free to forward this information.
Professor of Journalism
Racism and Discrimination in the Sporting World – An interdisciplinary volume to be edited by Professor of French and Fulbright Scholar Eileen M. Angelini, Ph.D., Canisius College
What is it about culture and society that creates an environment in which an athlete is able to excel or fail in his/her respective sport? Which factors, such as racism, discrimination, financial advantage or hardship, propel or hinder an athlete’s achievements? This volume seeks to explore how the world of sports is often a microcosm of the real world and the many ways in which it uniquely reflects cultural and societal issues. Abstracts are welcomed from all disciplines.
Abstract Due Dates: Preference will be given to abstracts received by October 15, 2016 and should be no longer than 300 words. Please also include a brief biographical statement and a CV.
Final manuscripts (no longer than 15,000 words, including Works Cited) should be submitted in MLA style, by December 15, 2016.
Send inquires and abstracts to: email@example.com
The volume is scheduled for publication in February 2017 by Universitas Press, Montreal