WAL Special Issue (CFP)

Call for Submissons for Special Issue of WAL

Title: Emerging Field Directions from Younger Scholars

This special issue of Western American Literature showcases literary and cultural study work of younger scholars — graduate students and junior faculty.  Of particular interest is work which engages current theoretical debate in the field.  “West” is defined broadly here to refer to all of North America that either critically or historically has been considered “West” including comparative studies of the American West that cross regional or national boundaries.

Possible topics include:

  • interdisciplinarity and Western American Studies (ie ethnography, philosophy, the biological sciences, and more familiar history/literature study)
  • decolonizing the West
  • the interface between the virtual and real in postregional cultural production (ie place issues as they intersect with the “local real” in practices of video gaming, digital humanities, social networking, and etc.)
  • visuality and West: cinema, TV, photography, art
  • cultural and postmodern geography and literatures of place
  • affective geographies
  • historicist practices and 19C contact zones on moving frontier
  • animal studies and the posthuman in literature, film, culture
  • environment, social justice, nature writing, ethics of place
  • theoretical work engaging debates about conceptualizations of West including: notions of the rhizome or westness, forensic aesthetics, region as city-region in network of global world cities, translation, the local/global West, place ethics, feminist critical geographies, critical regionalism, comparative frontiers
  • issues of sovereignty, settler colonalisms, and the question of “What constitutes legitimate settlement?”
  • comparative work on the Global South, the US South, borderlands, and West
  • marking gender/queer/race/class as ongoing strategy of engaging problems of power
  • class, political economy, rural/urban/suburban
  • other issues of critical significance not listed here

Proposals (500 words) for submissions are due December 31.  Essays will be due July 1 (sooner is great).  Essays will be reviewed by the guest editor and/or sent out for more specialized review and returned with comments on August 1.  Contributors are to submit any revisions by September 1, 2010.  Essays cannot exceed 25 pages double-spaced, including endnotes (no footnotes) and Works Cited.  This special issue will be published in the early winter of 2013.  At 2012 WLA annual meeting in Lubbock, contributors will be invited to present their work in a plenary devoted to this special issue.  Your manuscript should follow MLA style. All submissions are electronic to guest editor, Krista Comer.  Questions and submissions should go to kcomer@rice.edu directly.

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