Related Calls for Papers

Call for Submissions: Edited collection on Familial Influences on Superheroes


Areas of analysis: American Studies, Cultural Studies, Fan Studies, Film and Television Studies, Media Studies, Gender Studies, Popular Culture Studies, Media Industries Studies


Editor: Jim Iaccino


This text will examine the role that the family plays on the development of the superhero as portrayed in radio, comics, graphic novels, television series, and feature films.  Many superheroes have experienced the trauma of losing (a) parent(s), which sets them apart from others.  Thus, the individuals that the superheroes gravitate towards become an integral part of their lives, to the point where they form a necessary and vital “familial network” of connections that would either replace those that were lost or never fully established.  This network ranges from “substitute” parents/guardians as well as siblings and relatives, to significant others and even more extended members comprising superhero teams.  Each chapter will focus on a specific superhero and how s/he has been impacted by the aforementioned familial figures.  Through this collection of essays, readers will understand the psychological makeup of superheroes much better and see that behind every hero is a family member(s) encouraging them to use their powers for the benefit of humanity.


Besides Batman, potential superheroes to be covered across a number of media (radio, comics, television and film) include, but are not limited to:


  • Superman
  • Supergirl
  • The Flash
  • Green Arrow
  • Wonder Woman
  • Spider-Man
  • Captain America
  • Iron Man
  • The Hulk
  • Thor
  • Black Widow
  • Scarlet Witch
  • X-Men
  • Fantastic Four
  • The Avengers
  • Justice League of America
  • Teen Titans


We already have an agreement with McFarland Press to do this collection, so all that remains is securing the contributions in a timely fashion for a planned text publication in early 2021.


The deadline for proposals of 500 words is April 30, 2019.  Please email your abstract and a brief bio to  Please put “Familial Influences Abstract” in the subject line.  If an abstract is selected for the collection, full essays of 5,000-7,000 words will be due by September 1, 2019.


Ethics and Culture
This series focuses on scholarly books that will be of interest to
both academics and non-academics. The books should contain
new, original material and explore various areas where scholarly
debates intersect with cultural concerns.
What We Want
Book Length Manuscripts
 For example, T. Furman, The Ethics of Poker (978-1-4766-6461-3)
Edited Volumes
 For example, T. Samek and L. Shultz, Information Ethics, Globalization,
and Citizenship: Essays on Ideas to Praxis (978-1-4766-6772-0 )
Categories of interest include but are not limited to debates in healthcare,
science, genetic enhancement, free speech, journalism, literary genre,
sports, gaming, politics, business, performing arts, immigration, technology,
disability, environment, urban space, law enforcement, protest, and
popular culture.

Have an Idea?
James M. Okapal
Series Editor
Also visit
and explore
“Becoming an Author”
For general information
Tel: 336-246-4460
FAX: 336-246-5018

Call for Papers

Batman in Popular Culture Conference

Friday, April 12 and Saturday April, 13 2019

Bowling Green State University Bowling Green, Ohio, USA

The Department of Popular Culture and the Browne Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio are proud to announce the Batman in Popular Culture Conference on Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13, 2019.  The Batman in Popular Culture conference aims to examine Batman in Popular Culture in all mediums and media.  It is intended to serve as a space for academics, graduate students, comic industry professionals, retailers and fans to engage in dialogue about topics related to Batman in its many media forms, mediums and cultural influence in popular culture and beyond. The scope of this conference is deliberately broad, with the intention of highlighting the interdisciplinary nature and many different avenues of research possible related to Batman in Popular Culture.

Possible topics might include but are not limited to:


  • Textual analysis of graphic novels, storylines, other texts related to Batman
  • In-depth analysis of particular authors & artists work related to Batman
  • The development of supporting characters, villains, and themes within the Batman mythos
  • Batman in Popular Music
  • Batman in Film, Television, and Animation
  • The rise of Batman-centric podcasts
  • Batman as a mass merchandising phenomenon
  • Batman VS. Superman
  • Batman and video games
  • The role of diversity issues (race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality) within Batman’s world
  • Batman within the Comics Industry (writing, drawing, retailing, etc.)
  • Batman art and covers across the decades
  • How authors build an audience in an era of subgenre specialization
  • Reception and fan communities for Batman and the superhero genre
  • Digital Humanities approaches to Comics and Mass Media Studies with emphasis on Batman


We welcome individual proposals or pre-formed panels that address any or all of these themes. As the conference seeks to provide a multitude of perspectives, academic presentations and those from outside the academy are welcome.

Please send a 300-word abstract describing your individual presentation to  with “Batman in Popular Culture” in the subject line. (Panel, roundtable, performance, and artistic display proposals should include a 300 proposal for each individual and a 500-word proposal explaining the group presentation.) Submissions should be sent in a document attachment with the following information:

Author’s name/Title

Institutional Affiliation (if applicable)

Email address

Presentation Title and Abstract

Deadline for Submissions is Monday, December 30, 2018.


CFP – Re-entering Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse – Sept 1 2018

Co-editors Heather M. Porter and Michael Starr invite proposals or completed essays for an edited collection of scholarly works that explore Joss Whedon’s science fiction television series Dollhouse (2009-2010). Though arguably Whedon’s most provocative foray into television, Dollhouse has thus far been subject to limited academic analysis in comparison to his other works, something this collection is aiming to redress. Indeed, Dollhouse’s meditations upon corporate control of the individual and female autonomy have grown ever more prevalent in the light of contemporary socio-political developments and the #metoo movement, and are hence ripe for further investigation.
Proposals should demonstrate not only a clear methodology and strong thesis but also a
familiarity with prior and current conversations and publications about the series, and the Whedonverse in general. The anticipated collection seeks to showcase a range of theoretical lenses; we are hence interested in a variety of topics as well as diverse disciplinary approaches. Though not prescriptive, it may be productive to consider the following list of topics:

Dollhouse and the #metoo movement
Recent controversy surrounding Joss Whedon’s feminism
The influence and legacy of Dollhouse on television (e.g. HBO’s Westworld)
Dollhouse and the current and expanding corporate influences on government
The construction of sexuality and/or gender
Queer identity and Theory
Race Relations
The Posthuman Body
The Dollhouse Comics
Philosophy and Ethics
Paratexts or production elements

We strongly recommend authors familiarize themselves with these publications to extend and/or challenge published analyses of the series:
Espenson, Jane, ed. Inside Joss’ Dollhouse: From Alpha To Rossum. Dallas, TX: Benbella,
Ginn, Sherry, Heather M. Porter and Alyson Buckman, eds. Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse:
Confounding Purpose, Confusing Identity. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2014.

All essays in the Dollhouse Issue of Slayage: The Journal of the Whedon Studies
Association. Volume 8.2/3, Summer/Fall 2010.
Selected writings on Dollhouse in:

Ginn, Sherry. Power and Control in the Television Worlds of Joss Whedon. Jefferson, NC:
McFarland and Company, 2012.

Iatropoulos, Mary Ellen and Lowery A. Woodall III, eds. Joss Whedon and Race. Jefferson,
NC: McFarland and Company, 2016.

Kitchens, Juliette C. At Home in the Whedonverse: Essays on Domestic Place, Space and Life. Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Company, 2017.

Waggoner, Erin B. Sexual Rhetoric in the Works of Joss Whedon. Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Company, 2010.

The Whedonology Academic Whedon Studies Bibliography, available at:
Queries and Submissions:
Please send queries and abstracts for proposed chapter-length original work (350-500
words) to (subject line: Dollhouse Collection).
Proposals should be submitted no later than September 1, 2018. Selected contributors will be notified by October 1, 2018. We suggest but do not require that proposals include a working bibliography. Please provide in a separate document or in the body of the email a brief author biography and selected list of prior publications/conference presentations. We are currently discussing the book proposal with a publisher who is very interested in the collection, hence are working on a production timeline which would tentatively allow the book a 2020 publication date.

Dear Colleagues
We invite you to take part in the Russian Society of American Culture Studies
XLIV International conference of the Russian Society of American Culture
Studies will be held December 6-19, 2018 at Lomonosov Moscow State
University Journalism Department. Its theme – “America and Europe: Forms
of Cultural Interaction”.
Sections: Journalism, American Culture of the 17th -19th Centuries,
Contemporary culture, Ethnic Contribution, Gender, Fantastic in the Arts,
Canadian perspectives. Also a traditional Round Table discussion: Imprints –
Image of America and Image of Russia will be held. You are welcome to suggest your own panel (no less than 3 participants).
Deadline – May 15, 2018.
Official languages of the conference are English and Russian. All participants
will understand papers given in English and will provide an English resume of
their talk, if given in Russian.
The deadline for abstracts – September 15, 2018 (half a page). Please send
them to all to On the basis of delivered and discussed
papers, an annual bilingual collection is published.
Conference fee $ 100 US, payable upon arrival, includes also an excursion to
Kremlin and a farewell party.
Information about visa support: As it is a lengthy process – please send the
needed materials [copy of two first pages of passport and info on place of birth
(city and country), affiliation and position, office address, phone and fax
numbers, place of visa application, dates of arrival and departure] to the
address no later than September 20, 2018. See you at our conference!
Larisa Mikhaylova, RSACS Secretary


Wilson College Humanities Conference


The Alien and The Aliens: Difference, Otherness, and “Little Green Men”


Saturday, February 25, 2017

Held in the Brooks Complex of Wilson College

Chambersburg, PA


sponsored by Wilson’s M.A. in Humanities Program


The theme of this year’s Wilson College Orr Forum is concerned with inequality, from social justice to wealth and status to the veritable “Eye of the Needle,” referencing the New Testament story about a rich man asking Jesus what is needed for salvation. Wilson’s annual Humanities Conference seeks to broaden this theme by focusing on concepts of alienation and alien-ing—on that which causes us to create or notice difference, and that which causes us to react to those differences as well.


The Other suggests that which is of society but still different from it—meaning that the Other is recognizable as an element of society, even if originating elsewhere. The Alien, though, suggests some things—beings, concepts, people, ideas, beliefs, values, systems—that seemingly differ so much that they must originate from outside of society—from other worlds and outer spaces, metaphorically or (in some cases) literally. Aliens, after all, in their most basic definition, are beings not of this Earth, and as such, they are strange to us indeed.


This conference looks to how the various fields represented by the Humanities explore our own relationship to these concepts of The Alien and The Aliens. How can we use the Humanities to make sense of that which seems so different? How can we use what we study to understand more about our own fears and fascinations for what is seen as dissimilar, and strange, and unusual? Or, conversely, how does the Humanities bridge the gap between The Alien and what is deemed socially normative, or socially desirable, or simply capable of being comprehended?


Please feel free to interpret the theme of this conference liberally. Our goal is to bring a group of Humanities scholars from around the region together to articulate and celebrate these always intriguing and confounding questions of difference, o/Otherness, inequality, alienation, and, yes, even little green men and women; we hope to use this conference to explore all relevant aspects of what is alien.


Faculty, graduate students, and independent scholars are invited to submit.


Undergraduate students may also submit abstracts, but their submission must be sponsored by a current faculty member at their institution. (For more on this, please contact the conference director.)


To submit a presentation, please send an abstract of approximately 200 words to the email address below.


Send abstracts to:

Dr. Michael G. Cornelius

Program Director, MA in Humanities

Wilson College


Submit the abstract as either a .rtf, .doc, or .docx file, or simply place it into the text of the email itself.


Individual presentations will last no more than 15 minutes; panels of up to 3 individuals may be submitted as well. Special panels or creative approaches are happily considered; please contact the conference director for more information. Each conference participant may submit only one abstract. Abstracts are due by JANUARY 15, 2017.


The conference is sponsored by Wilson’s M.A. in Humanities program, in conjunction with the Orr Forum 20176-17 Lecture and Performance Series.


Call for Proposals

“Considering Sydney Newman”



Sydney Newman, image from

In light of the recent fiftieth anniversary of the long-running science fiction television series Doctor Who, it seems only fair that some attention be paid to its creator Sydney Newman (1917-1997).  Newman enjoyed a long and interesting career in broadcasting and films.  While his ‘claim to fame’ might very well be as creator of Doctor Who and Avengers, he also worked at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation as Supervising director of features, documentaries and outside broadcasts (1952-1958), the Associated British Corporation as head of Drama (1958-1962), the British Broadcasting Corporation as head of Drama (1962-1967), and the National Film Board of Canada as a film editor (1941-1949) and as Commissioner (1970-1975).  He then became a special advisor on film to the Canadian Secretary of State, and was Chief Creative Consultant for the Canadian Film Development Corporation (1978-1984).


His work at these institutions was important in the history of Canadian and British broadcasting, and popular culture. His influence was far-reaching.  But thus far, while there have been some studies which have taken into account the particular roles which he has played during his career, no study has taken his roles together, to provide a more complete picture.


This peer-reviewed collection seeks to understand Sydney Newman in relation to his long career in Canada and in Britain. Articles can deal with specific aspects of his career, specific institutions, specific programs he developed, his influence as a producer/filmmaker, or administrator.  Biographical articles are also welcome.

The aim is that the collection taken as a whole will provide a balanced look at his varied career in two countries during periods of significant development and change in the entertainment industry.


Proposals should be approximately two hundred words, and sent to by the 1st of September 2016.  A decision will be communicated by the 15th of September, and final articles should be submitted by the 15 May 2016.


Gillian I Leitch, PhD

Independent Scholar

Co-Chair, Science Fiction Fantasy Area, PCA/ACA





Key Words: Canada, United Kingdom, National Film Board of Canada, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, British Broadcasting Corporation, Associated British Corporation, television, film, policy, public broadcasting


CFP: The Romance of Science Fiction/Fantasy, 2016


CALL FOR PAPERS:  The Romance of Science Fiction / Fantasy

Deadline: September 30, 2016


Whether we consider romance novels incorporating elements of the fantastic, the future, or the alien, or works of Science Fiction/Fantasy exploring love, desire, and other aspects of romantic culture, the relationship between these genres has been enduring and productive. Following up on a series of joint panels at the 2016 national conference of the Popular Culture Association, the Journal of Popular Romance Studies calls for papers for a special issue on the intersections between romance and science fiction/fantasy in fiction (including fan fic), film, TV, and other media, now and in the past, from anywhere in the world.  This special issue will be guest edited by Gillian I. Leitch, PCA co-chair for SF/Fantasy, and Erin Young.


Contributions might consider questions like the following, either in terms of particular texts (novels, films, TV shows, etc.) or in terms of genre, audience, and media history:


  • How has the intersection of these two popular genres opened up new possibilities in conceptualizing gender, desire, sexuality, love, courtship, or relationship structure, not just recently, but since the earliest years of SF/Fantasy?
  • How has their intersection allowed us to see existing concepts of gender, desire, sexuality, love, courtship, and relationship structure in fresh or critical ways?
  • How have authors, filmmakers, producers, and fans played these genres against one another, for example by using romance to critique traditions in SF/F, or SF/F to critique the tropes of romance? How has this counterpoint been explored by authors, filmmakers, producers, and fans of color, or by LBGTQIA creators and audiences?
  • How might reading classics of SF/F as romance change our perception of them: works like Dune and the Witch World novels, The Left Hand of Darkness, or even E.E. “Doc” Smith’s Lensman series, which are threaded on a tale of eugenic love?
  • What happens to works of paranormal, futuristic, or time-travel romance when we read them through the lenses provided by SF/Fantasy Studies?
  • What happens when teaching works of SF/Fantasy and popular romance? How do these genres co-exist or compete in pedagogical experience or classroom practice?
  • How do works of SF/Fantasy and popular romance coexist and interact in library ecosystems? What issues arise in terms of collection development, readers advisory, or community engagement?


Papers of between 5,000 and 10,000 words, including notes and bibliography, should be sent to Erin Young ( To facilitate blind peer review, please remove your name and other identifying information from the manuscript.  Submissions should be Microsoft Word documents, with citations in MLA format.


The Journal of Popular Romance Studies is a double-blind peer reviewed interdisciplinary journal exploring popular romance fiction and the logics, institutions, and social practices of romantic love in global popular culture. JPRS is available without subscription at





CFP: Seeing What We’ve Become: Essays Examining Heroes and Heroes: Reborn

Editor Heather M Porter invites proposals or completed essays for an edited collection of scholarly works that explore Tim Kring’s Heroes (2006-2010) and the upcoming new incarnation of the series as a mini series Heroes: Reborn (2015).  Proposals are sought on a variety of topics as diverse disciplinary approaches.

Though not prescriptive, the following list of topics may be productive to consider:

The reboot of the series in terms of production, narrative, and history of reboots.  Multimedia platform presentations of the narrative (comics, web episodes and TV)

Personal Identity                                             Race Relations

Group Identity (Us vs them)                       Philosophy and Ethics

Role of Heroes and Villains                          Psychopathology

Technology                                                         Violence

Superheroes and Super Powers                                Production and Network Influence

Time Travel                                                         Fan Response

Corporate Identity


It is strongly recommended authors familiarize themselves with these publications to extend and/or challenge published analyses of the series.

  • Johnson, David Kyle ed., Heroes and Philosophy: Buy the Book Save the World, Hoboken, NJ, John Wiley & Sons, 2009
  • Porter, Lynette, David Lavery and Hillary Robson, Saving the World A Guide to Heroes, Toronto, ECW Press, 2007
  • Simmons, David ed, Investigating Heroes: Essays on Truth, Justice and Quality TV, Jefferson, McFarland & Company, 2012.

Queries and Submissions

Queries are welcomed: please email to and indicate that it is a “Heroes Query/Proposal/Paper” in the subject line.  Send 350-500 word proposals or 5,000-7,000 word essays in Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format (RTF) to the same email address.  Please provide a brief biography in a separate document or in the body of the email.

Proposals due: 15 January 2016

Notification of Acceptance: 1 March 2016







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