Sunday, February 28, 2010

CFP: Read Feather Journal (June 1)

Of possible interest...
Call for submissions to

Red Feather Journal

Red Feather Journal invites critical and/or theoretical examination of the child image to further our understanding of the consumption, circulation, and representation of the child throughout the world’s visual mediums. Red Feather Journal welcomes submissions that examine the child image from a broad range of media’s: children’s film, Hollywood film, international film, television images of children or childhood, child images on the Internet, images of children/childhood in art, or images of children/childhood in any other visual medium. Some sample topics include, but are certainly not limited to: studies of images of children of color; child as commodity; images of children in Africa, Asia, Middle East, South America, etc.; political uses of the child image; children in film; children in advertising; visual adaptations of children’s literary works; child welfare images; children and war; or any other critical examination of the child image in a variety of visual mediums.

Red Feather Journal is a peer-reviewed journal that facilitates an international dialogue among scholars and professionals through vigorous discussion of the intersections between the child image and the conception of childhood, children’s material culture, children and politics, the child body, and any other conceptions of the child within local, national, and global contexts.

Red Feather Journal is published twice a year, February and September, and adheres to the MLA citation system. Authors are welcome to submit articles in other citation systems, with the understanding that, upon acceptance, conversion to MLA is a condition of publication. For more information, please refer to our website:

Interested contributors please submit the paper, an abstract, and a brief 50-word biography as attachments (Microsoft Word compatible) to

Deadline for submissions for the fall issue is June 1st, 2010.

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

ImageText 5.1 Published

The new issue of ImageText, the journal about comics from the University of Florida, was just published. Here's the homepage for this issue. Contents include:


Graphic Whiteness and the Lessons of Chris Ware’s Jimmy CorriganJuda Bennett and Cassandra Jackson
Watchmen: The Graphic Novel as Trauma FictionBrandy Ball Blake
The Confluence of Heroism, Sissyhood, and Camp in The Rawhide Kid: Slap LeatherFrank Bramlett
"To the Stables, Robin": Regenerating the Frontier in Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight ReturnsTheo Finigan
Breaking the Frame: Political Acts of Body in the Televised Dark KnightDT Kofoed
"Mosaic Thresholds": Manifesting the Collection and Production of Comics in the works of Chris WareAaron Mauro
The Beautiful Ambiguity of Blankets: Comics Representation and Religious ArtBenjamin Stevens


"Now you will pay a dreadful penalty!": A Review of I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets! and You Shall Die by Your Own Evil Creation! by Fletcher HanksTerry Harpold


Notes on Contributors

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Monday, February 01, 2010

CFP: SANE journal (July and October)

This looks like it could become a very important new journal...
CFP: First and Second issues of
SANE journal:
sequential art narrative in education
(ISSN 2153-2613)

SANE journal
is now seeking submissions for works of research, practitioner-based articles, reviews, and rationales regarding its first two themed issues. Information about this new peer-reviewed, open access interdisciplinary journal covering all things comics-and-education-related, from pre-k to doctorate, can be obtained by visiting For more information, e-mail James Bucky Carter: jbcarter2 at utep dot edu.

V1.1 (late 2010 release or per article as considered ready by review board): “Comics in the Contact Zone.”

Mary Louis Pratt defines the contact zone as “social spaces where cultures meet, clash and grapple with each other, often in the contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power, such as colonialism, slavery, or their aftermaths as they are lived out in many parts of the world today” and where those involved in the educational experience may “reconsider the models of community that many of us rely on in teaching and theorizing and that are under challenge today.” Texts are social spaces, of course, and the comic book may be the best indicator of this fact. How do you see comics as meeting, clashing, and grappling with social issues in your classrooms when you teach them? How do comics illustrate contact zone precepts such as speech acts, transculturation, unsolicited oppositional discourse, autoethnography, and safe houses? How does the integration of comics themselves set up contact zones in the classroom? Which texts do you teach to get at notions associated with contact zone pedagogy? How does teaching a comics course set up a contact zone with professional colleagues, departments, university officials, etc? Articles should make explicit mention to contact zone theory and its component concepts. Deadline July 2010.

V1.2 (planned 2011 released or per article as considered ready by the review board): “Teaching the Works of Alan Moore.”

Alan Moore may be the most influential and controversial comics writer of the 20th and 21st centuries. How do you teach his complex, multilayered works in your high school classrooms, your college courses, etc? What are the challenges associated with teaching his texts or specific texts and how do you and your students address them? Can they be addressed? How does his output “fit” with notions of literature, literary, canon, etc. as you teach them in your courses? Articles may cover several of Moore’s texts or focus specifically on one. Deadline October 2010.

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

New Journal and CFP: Journal of Comics and Graphic Novels

Today I received word of yet another forthcoming academic journal devoted to comics scholarship. This time it's Journal of Comics and Graphic Novels, from Routledge. As always, you can find a complete list of journals related to comics scholarship at the Academic page of
Here's how the journal is described at its website:
The Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics is a peer reviewed journal covering all aspects of the graphic novel, comic strip and comic book, with the emphasis on comics in their cultural, institutional and creative contexts. Its scope is interdisciplinary and international, covering not only English language comics but also worldwide comic culture. The journal reflects interdisciplinary research in comics and aims to establish a dialogue between academics, historians, theoreticians and practitioners of comics. It therefore examines comics production and consumption within the contexts of culture: art, cinema, television and new media technologies.

The journal will include all forms of 'sequential imagery' including precursors of the comic but in the main emphasis will be on twentieth and twenty-first century examples, reflecting the increasing interest in the modern forms of the comic, its production and cultural consumption.
The general Call for Papers is available as a PDF, but here's the gist:
Contributions are invited on a wide range of comic-related topics including, but not limited to:

Genres (horror, romance, superheroes, experimental, autobiographical etc), underground/alternative comics, censorship, online comics, political and topical issues, fans and audiences (subcultures, gender, subcultural production), comics production and distribution systems, representing famous people in comics (American Presidents, sports heroes, film stars, iconic figures from history).

Possible topics for future themed issues include: Gender issues (comics as male dominated institutions, creators, audiences, representations, women fans, women creators in small press comics), individual genres (horror, romance, superheroes etc), adaptations, convergence culture, key creators (Moore, Hergé, Ware, Crumb, Eisner, McCay, Herriman etc) and national comic cultures (Manga, Latin America, Bande Dessineé etc).

Articles between 5000-7000 words should be emailed to: David Huxley ( and Joan Ormrod ( or posted to: Faculty of Art & Design, Manchester Metropolitan University, Chatham Building, Cavendish Street, Manchester, M15 6BR, UK
I'll be curious to see how these new journals will differentiate themselves from others in the field once they begin publication...

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Animation 4.3 (2009) - Comics and Animation Special Issue

The brand-new issue of Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal is a special issue: "Comics and Animation." Click this link for the table of contents, with links to abstracts. Looks like there could be some fascinating stuff here.

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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Journal of Visual Culture 8.2 (2009): "The Obama Issue"

I've not seen it, but the new issue of Journal of Visual Culture (August 2009, Volume 8, No. 2) is "The Obama Issue." I'm guessing that some of the articles will discuss editorial cartoon depictions of President - and candidate - Barack Obama. You can view the table of contents here.

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Monday, November 09, 2009

In Our Mailbox - "Graphic Novels Beyond the Basics" and "IJOCA 11.2"

It's a good day here at the offices (okay, office): Today's mail brought two all-new, all-different publications. First up is Graphic Novels Beyond the Basics: Insights and Issues for Libraries, edited by Martha Cornog & Timothy Perper. We'll be adding an info page to our bibliography for this book soon (edit: here it is!), but in the meantime, here's how the publisher's website describes it (handy, because I just walked in the door and haven't had time to begin to read the book yet):
This study of the graphic novel and its growth in the library helps librarians utilize and develop this extraordinarily popular format in their library collections.

One of the few bright spots in 21st century print publishing, graphic novels have moved from their stereotypical fanboy niche to the bestseller list, profoundly influencing movies, television, games, music, design, and fashion along the way. The phenomenon has reached libraries as well, with librarians collecting a variety of graphic novels for patrons of all ages.

What does the surge of popularity in graphic novels mean for libraries? Graphic Novels Beyond the Basics: Insights and Issues for Libraries goes deeper into this subject than any other volume previously published, bringing together a distinguished panel of experts to examine questions librarians may encounter as they work to enhance their graphic novel holdings.

Graphic Novels Beyond the Basics begins by introducing librarians to the world of the graphic novel: popular and critically acclaimed fiction and nonfiction titles; a wide range of genres including Japanese manga and other international favorites; recurring story and character archetypes; and titles created for specific cultural audiences and female readers. The book then offers a series of chapters on key issues librarians will face with graphic novels on the shelves, including processing and retention questions, preservation and retention, collecting related media such as Japanese anime films and video games, potential grounds for patron or parental complaints, the future of graphic novels, and more.
Check out the link above for additional information; we'll update this entry once we have the table of contents on our website. The contents are wide-ranging, covering genres, readers, resources and more, all designed with library collections in mind.

The second publication in today's mail was the International Journal of Comic Art 11.2 (Fall 2009). As always, editor and publisher John Lent has assembled an embarrassment of riches: This issue is more than 500 pages long, begins with a symposium on comics in India, contains almost two dozen additional essays, includes about 70 pages of reviews, and ends with a 14-page international cartoon portfolio. And yes, this is a typical issue.

If your library doesn't already subscribe to IJOCA, do all you can to convince them to. For just $70 per yer, they get three giant-size issues, two traditional issues plus a third, all-bibliography issue - this is a steal compared to almost any other journal. And individual subscriptions are only $45 per year (all three issues). If you're counting along at home, that's about 1,000 pages of content per year, not even including the new bibliography issue (I'm curious to see how massive these volumes will be).

For more information about the International Journal of Comic Art, visit the journal's website and blog.

Happy reading!

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Monday, October 26, 2009

CFP: Animals in Graphic Novels (journal issue; December 1)

H/T to Richard De Angelis...
Animals in Graphic Novels

Antennae: The Journal of Nature in Visual Culture is seeking submission for its June 2010 issue devoted to the subject of "animals in graphic novels."

The issue will primarily focus on papers that examine contemporary graphic novels; examples of these might include Pride of Baghdad (Brian K. Vaughan), First in Space (James Vining), the works of Osamu Tezuka, Animal Man (Grant Morrison), Rabbi's Cat (Joann Sfar), Fables (Bill Willingham), and Maus (Art Spiegelman), among others. Papers that examine the subjects of comics for children and comic strips that appear in newspapers may also be considered, depending on the originality of the contextualisation through which they may be presented.

We are looking at gathering a wide range of perspectives, themes and ideas within the broad scope of "animals in graphic novels." These may include, but are not limited to, the following:
  • Exploring animality in the graphic novel medium
  • Representing the human/animal divide
  • Positive and negative aspects of anthropomorphism
  • Becoming animal
  • Links between sexism, racism and speciesism
  • Non-western graphic novels
  • The challenges of animal first-person narratives
  • Ecocriticism and nature in graphic novels
As per usual, Antennae is open to consideration of academic essays as well as fiction and experimental writing. Submission of abstracts and proposals is 1st of December 2009. Final deadline for submissions is 1st of March 2010. For any questions please contact Giovanni Aloi and Lisa Brown (Guest Editor of the Animals in Graphic Novels Issue) at antennaeproject [at]

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

UPDATE - CFP: "Visual Literatures," Special Issue of College Literature (now April 2010)

As we posted earlier this month, College Literature is looking for some more contributors for their forthcoming "visual literatures" issue. Please note that the new deadline for submissions is April 2010. For more information, see our origianl post.

Image Credit: College Literature website.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2009

CFP: "Visual Literatures," Special Issue of College Literature (November 2009)

(CORRECTION: In the initial version of this post I confused the journal College Literature with College English. My apologies to both journals, and also to Dale Jacobs who most cordially pointed out my error.)

The journal College Literature is looking for some more contributors for their forthcoming "visual literatures" issue. A few days ago, Dr. James Bucky Carter (editor of Building Literacy Connections with Graphic Novels) sent a brief note to the Comics Scholars discussion list about the matter. I wrote to the journal for some additional information, and here 'tis.
This is the information I have been sending to those interested in submitting an essay for the special issue.

Essays should deal with approaches to reading, teaching, and/or appreciating visual literatures, which can include graphic novels, film, photography, or any other medium in which the visual is dominant. The expected length is 20 to 30 pages, double spaced, with works cited list and notes.

Originally the issue was to be published late 2010 but I think that may be pushed to early 2011. The current deadline is Nov. 2009, but again, I think the time may be extended. The deadline for submission has been extended to April 2010 with an anticipated publication date of July 2010. The essay must be original and not one previously published. The editor is currently out of the country and I will talk to him about the issue when he returns the end of August.
FYI, here's College Literature's statement of editorial policy:
College Literature is a quarterly journal of scholarly criticism dedicated to serving the needs of college/university teachers by providing them with access to innovative ways of studying and teaching new bodies of literature and experiencing old literatures in new ways.

The journal provides usable, readable, and timely material designed to keep its readers abreast of new developments and shifts in the theory and practice of literature by covering the full range of what is presently being read and taught as well as what should be read and taught in the college literature classroom.

It encourages a variety of approaches to textual analysis and criticism (including political, feminist, and poststructuralist) on English, American, and European literature in addition to Eastern literatures, minority and Third World literatures, oral literature, and interdisciplinary/comparative studies (such as anthropology and literature, computers and literature, literature and film, and so on).
If you're interested in contributing to this special issue (or to CL in general), please contact:
Elizabeth Alex Lukens
Editorial Assistant
College Literature
210 E. Rosedale Ave.
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
elukens [at]
And tell her Comics Research & Such sent you!

Image Credit: College Literature website.

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

CFP: Studies in Comics (journal; September 1, 2009)

Last night we posted the initial announcement for the new journal Studies in Comics. Here's their first CFP.
Call for Papers

Papers are invited for Studies in Comics, a new international and interdisciplinary academic journal that aims to describe the nature of comics, to identify the medium as a distinct art form, and to address its formal properties. The inaugural edition will launch our investigations with a selection of world-class academic articles that explore the formal properties of comics, advancing their own theory of comics or responding to an established theoretical model. We also welcome reviews of new comics, scholarship, criticism and exhibitions, as well as unpublished creative work.

We are now inviting the following submissions:

Articles of 4,000-8,000 words from any discipline. These should have a strong critical focus and seek to apply hitherto unexplored theoretical approaches to the medium of comics or respond to published theories about the medium’s formal properties. Possible areas include:

  • Comics and visual language in the context of communications theory
  • The grammar of comics
  • Narrative structure
  • The relationship between panel, page, and the multiframe
  • Composition and panel transitions
  • The treatment of time and space
  • Responses to published theorists such as Scott McCloud, Will Eisner, Thierry Groensteen
We also welcome reviews of new publications and exhibits and short creative work of 1-5 pages in length. Creative work should be relevant to some aspect of comics, although there are no other thematic or stylistic restrictions. Metafictional submissions that deal with the processes and theories of comics creation are encouraged.

Please send all submissions to

Article submissions: please send 300 word abstracts and include the word ARTICLE in the subject heading. Submissions should be received by 1 September 2009 in the first instance. Please indicate the intended word count of the article. Completed papers will be required by 30 October 2009. All submissions will be peer reviewed. Papers must be submitted in English.

Reviews of publications and exhibitions: please include the words REVIEW PUBLICATION or REVIEW EXHIBITION in the subject heading.

Creative submissions: please include the word CREATIVE in the subject heading.

Reviews and creative work must be received by the same deadlines indicated above (1 September 2009 for statements of intention, 30 October 2009 for final work).

Submissions are welcome from both scholars and enthusiasts. Contributors are encouraged to approach comics from any discipline and to turn their attention to comics from all countries and in all languages. So whether you’re a semiotician, philosopher, scientist, historian, enthusiast, cultural, literary or film critic – Studies in Comics welcomes you!

Julia Round and Chris Murray (Editors)

M. Thomas Inge and Dean Chan (Associate Editors)
Paul Gravett (Review and Exhibitions Editor) and Roger Sabin (Consulting Editor)
Douglas Noble (Creative Submissions Editor)

Image credit: Cover to Studies in Comics, v1 no1, courtesy of editor Chris Murray. Artwork by Chris Ware.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Journal: Studies in Comics

At this year's Popular Culture Association conference, my friend and mentor Tom Inge mentioned that this journal was in the works. And now, here it is!

Studies in Comics
a new, peer-reviewed journal
published by

Edited by Julia Round (, Chris Murray (, Dean Chan ( and M. Thomas Inge (, Studies in Comics aims to describe the nature of comics, identify the medium as a distinct art form, and address its formal properties.

The emerging field of comics studies is a model for interdisciplinary research and this journal welcomes all approaches and methodologies. Its specific goal, however, is to expand the relationship between comics and theory and to seek to articulate a 'theory of comics'.

The editors welcome articles that explore the formal properties of comics, advance their own theory of comics, or respond to an established theoretical model. The journal will also contain reviews of new comics, scholarship, criticism, and exhibitions, as well as unpublished creative work.

For submission guidelines please write to Thank you.

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

CFP: Jewish Comics [journal issue; October 2, 2009]

[Synchronicity Dep't: I'm currently reading Danny Fingeroth's Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews, Comics, and the Creation of the Superhero.]

The scholarship surrounding comics and “graphic novels” has proliferated over the past several years, as has studies focusing on particular comics themes or visual texts created by certain ethnic communities. Indeed, over the past three years alone there have been at least six critical studies investigating the links between comics and Jewishness. Given this emergent field of inquiry, Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies will devote a special issue to Jewish comics (slotted for Summer 2010). The scope of this volume will take in the theoretical, literary, and historical contexts of graphic narrative and its links to Jewish identity and discourse. Possible topics could include, but are certainly not limited to:
  • The ways in which comics have articulated the American Jewish experience
  • Comics and the Holocaust, as expressed in such narratives as Maus, Auschwitz, I Was a Child of the Holocaust, We Are on Our Own, Mendel’s Daughter: A Memoir, and Yossel: April 19, 1943
  • The contributions of Jews in the history of comic strips and comic books
  • Images of Israel in the works of Joe Sacco, Rutu Modan, Ari Folman, Miriam Libicki, and the Dimona Comix Group
  • Jewish identity through superheroes and villains, from Superman to The Spirit to Shaloman
  • The form of the contemporary “graphic novel” by Jewish writers/artists such as Kim Deitch, Joann Sfar, Miss Lasko-Gross, Ben Katchor, and Aline Kominisky-Crumb
  • Graphic adaptations of Jewish texts and legends
  • Immigration and ethnic urban landscapes in the works of comics artists such as Will Eisner and Ben Katchor
  • Comics, the Diaspora, and Jewish internationalism
  • Jewish identity and world conflict, from the world wars to 9/11
  • Jewish autobiographic comics (e.g., Harvey Pekar’s American Splendor and Will Eisner’s autobiographic fiction) as well as graphic biographies of such figures as Franz Kafka, Emma Goldman, Houdini, and Anne Frank
  • Representations of the Jewish gangster in comics
  • The uses of the golem and its relation to the superhero
All essay submissions should be between 5,000 and 8,000 words, including notes. Contributors should format submissions based on the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, and use footnotes. Authors will be responsible for securing copyright permission for all images used. Address all inquiries, and submit all completed manuscripts, to the guest editor, Derek Parker Royal at Derek_Royal[at] Please include the words “Jewish Comics” in the subject heading.

Deadline for final manuscript submission is October 2, 2009.

Shofar is published for the Midwest Jewish Studies Association, the Western Jewish Studies Association, and the Jewish Studies Program of Purdue University by the Purdue University Press. For more information on the journal, please visit

Update 04/21/2009: You also can download a pdf of this call for papers.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

CFP: Mechademia 5 - Fanthropologies (Deadline: Jan. 5, 2009)

Above: The cover to Volume 2; see the contents listing for that issue at the Mechademia website. BTW, I love the word "fanthropology."

Call for Papers
Mechademia 5: Fanthropologies

(University of Minnesota Press, forthcoming in 2010)

In recent years, interest in fan communities and fan activities has exploded, and the term otaku has become global currency. Terms like "fan" and "otaku" have been mobilized for a wide range or reasons in a wide variety of discourses, from gender studies to inquiries about technology and sociality. We think that the exploration of fan activities and otaku phenomena is crucial to understanding the contemporary world of transnational image and information flows, as well as the transnational formation of concepts and discourses.

In keeping with our mission to forge links between different communities of knowledge and to challenge the conventional channels for the flow of information, in Mechademia 5, we propose a challenge to the received understandings of fans. We would like to challenge quasi-anthropological and pseudo-sociological readings in which the identity of "fan" or "otaku" is presumed in advance as a fixed object of knowledge. We propose "fanthropologies" not as the anthropology of fans but as an exploration of the challenge that fans present for the imposition of anthropological knowledge and the sociological gaze. To do "fanthropology" is not to do anthropology of fans but to ask what anthropology might be for or to fans.

We thus invite submissions that take seriously the social and historical construction of fans or otaku as an object of knowledge rather than impose it imperiously. We welcome essays that counter the tendency to posit fans as nothing more than a new object for old forms of knowledge. We seek essays about zones of activity as varied as manga and anime fandoms, game and character design, subcultures, emergent communities and microfascisms, connoisseurship, packaging, pop arts and fine arts, to name but a few.

We encourage authors from various backgrounds with diverse interests to write in a variety of formats and from a range of perspectives. These might include textual readings that foreground reader or viewer experience, critical theorizations of fandom, and studies of fan-produced texts, as well as first-person narratives, photo essays, artistic interventions, and other approaches not listed here. We call on contributors not only to write across disciplinary boundaries but also to address readers in allied communities of knowledge.

The submission deadline is January 5, 2009. Submissions may be sent as attachments to submissions @ Essays should be between 1,000 and 5,000 words and use Chicago style documentation. Authors may include up to five black-and-white images, and additional images or color images may be possible with special permission from the publisher. Further information is available on the Mechademia web site at

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Journal: Transformative Works and Cultures

The first issue of the new (peer-reviewed!) fan studies journal Transformative Works and Cultures was launched yesterday. From the press release:
This open-access online multimedia fan studies journal publishes scholarly essays, personal essays, and book reviews. TWC is published under the umbrella of the nonprofit fan advocacy group Organization for Transformative Works, and although its audience will primarily be acafans (academic fans), its scope ranges widely with the aim of providing a forum for fannish voices, academic or not.

"One important aspect of the journal is its open-access nature," Karen Hellekson, coeditor of TWC, commented. "It will be available for anyone to read, without any subscription restrictions. Plus it's online, so the articles can use hotlinks and embed videos. It's really time to move beyond the print model, so it's exciting that we're able to do that." She points to Francesca Coppa's essay, "Women, Star Trek, and the Early Development of Fannish Vidding," as an example of an essay that uses embedded media. "It's got screen caps from fan vids, plus embedded links to video, all to support her argument. It really explores the range of what multimedia has to offer." The issue also contains an audio feature, presented by Bob Rehak, with two downloadable recordings of a discussion held at the 2008 Console-ing Passions academic conference.
While the journal isn't focused solely or even primarily on comics, the first issue contains Madeline Ashby's "Ownership, Authority, and the Body: Does Antifanfic Sentiment Reflect Posthuman Anxiety?" It's an article that references manga while "examin[ing] three Japanese anime texts - Ghost in the Shell, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and Serial Experiments: Lain - in order to discover metaphors for female fan practices online."

They're already soliciting content for issue No. 2, to be released March 15, 2009, focused on "Games as Transformative Works." Complete information - and, of course, the journal itself - may be found at its website:

TWC promises to be a journal that comics scholars should keep their eye on, both for information and for publishing opportunities.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New Academic Journal: European Comic Art

European Comic Art is a new academic journal on comics, published by Liverpool UP. The journal's website describes it better than I can (especially since I haven't seen a copy yet):
European Comic Art will be the first English-language scholarly publication devoted to the study of European-language graphic novels, comic strips, comic books and caricature. Published in association with the American Bande Dessinée Society and the International Bande Dessinée Society, European Comic Art builds on existing scholarship in French-language comic art and will be able to draw on the scholarly activities undertaken by both organisations. However, our editorial board and consultative committee bring expertise on a wider European area of comic art production and the journal will emphasise coverage of work from across Europe, including Eastern Europe.
Given the contents of the first issue, including its roster of contributing scholars, this journal should become an essential resource. Get your library to order a subscription, pronto!
  • Introduction - Laurence Grove, Mark McKinney, Ann Miller, and Hugo Frey ... 0
  • Bande dessinee and the Cinematograph: Visual narrative in 1895 - Lance Rickman ... 1
  • De Luca and Hamlet: Thinking outside the box - Paul Gravett ... 21
  • Family History and Social History: Etienne Davodeau's reportage of reality in Les Mauvaises gens - Clare Tufts ... 37
  • Autobiographical Innovations: Edmond Baudoin's Eloge de la poussière - Matthew Screech ... 57
  • A Few Words about The System of Comics and More... - Thierry Groensteen ... 87
  • News and Reviews - edited by Hugo Frey ... 95
  • Artwork by Tanitoc
The first issue of European Comic Art is now available. For more information, see the journal's website.

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Monday, February 04, 2008

CFP: Reading Between the Panels (Scan Journal; due Mar. 31, 2008)

Scan is a project of the Media Department @ Macquarie University, Sydney. This CFP is also available at Scan Journal's website.

Call for Papers:
Reading between the panels

Edited by:
Dr Steve

Comic books have been often treated deridingly as a hybrid of art and literature, but ultimately a product of low culture. Works by artists, writers and scholars including Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore, Art Spiegelman, Frank Miller, Scott McCloud, Will Brooker and Danny Fingeroth have forced a reappraisal of the space occupied by comic books. Over the last two decades comic book stories have diverged from hero-centric mythologies to more broadly explore areas such as the full gamut of the human psyche, sexuality, and politics. Beyond the stories themselves, the comic industry and economy has expanded to encompass underground, adult and alternative productions as well lucrative movie adaptations. This issue of Scan Journal invites submission on areas dealing with comic books and graphic novels that include, but are not restricted to:
  • Studies of narrative
  • Visual aesthetic
  • Analysis of specific titles or characters
  • Comics and adaptations/derivatives
  • Fan fiction
  • Comic book histories
  • Economics of the comic book industry
  • Comics and new media, Web comics, micropayment systems such as Bitpass, digital comics on DVD
  • Comic books and intellectual property, for example copyright assignments, the pirate trade in scanned comics
Abstracts should be emailed to the editors by no later than 31st March 2008.

Full articles will adhere to the submission guidelines for Scan Journal and be emailed as a Word document attachment to the editors by Friday, 16th May 2008.

Submission guidelines can be found here.

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

CFP: Mechademia 4: War/Time (Deadline:January 7, 2008 )

This is a wonderful journal. Be sure to have your library order it!
Editor: Frenchy Lunning Associate Editors: Thomas LaMarre, Christopher Bolton, Michelle Ollie

Call for Papers

Mechademia is an annual forum published by the University of Minnesota Press, for critical work on anime, manga, and fan arts. We are seeking submissions on topics linked to Japanese and international manga or anime, as well as related material from fields like fashion, film studies, fine art, game design, and global fan culture, among others. We encourage contributions in a variety of formats, by authors from a wide range of backgrounds and fields. Contributors should endeavor to write across disciplinary boundaries, presenting their unique knowledge in all its sophistication, but with a broad audience in mind.

We are currently accepting submissions for Mechademia #4, the theme of which is "War/Time." Possible topics include:
  • past and future conflicts
  • war and memory
  • animated violence and cinematic duration
  • millennialism and apocalypse
  • manga histories
  • heroic archetypes versus real histories
  • avatar wars
  • etc.
This list is only a beginning: contributors are encouraged to interpret the topic broadly and contribute their own original perspectives. Superior submissions that fall outside the theme may also be considered if space permits.

The submission deadline for volume #4 is January 7, 2008.

Submissions should be approximately 5000 words or less, plus notes. Mechademia uses Chicago style documentation. Files may be sent as attachments to

Detailed submission guidelines and further information are available on our web site at

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Thursday, January 25, 2007

CFP: "Autographics" (8/15/2007)

[Thanks to new ComicsResearch & Such friend Chandra Wells, via the inestimable K.A. Laity.]

"Autographics": A Biography Special Issue.

The Winter 2008 Special Issue of Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly will be devoted to Autographics. Guest editors Gillian Whitlock and Anna Poletti seek to explore the diverse forms of visuality and conjunctions of image, text, and materiality in contemporary life narrative. Graphic forms include visual elements such as drawings, images, and pictures, as well as elements of design and physical features of the text--for instance, the diverse use of materials in such DIY autobiographical forms as personal zines, installations, and websites. Other examples of autographics include autobiographical comix and sequential art, graphic memoir, writing on the body and body maps, self portraiture, auto/biographical uses of found objects in collage, assemblage and installation, and contemporary uses of craft.

TO SUBMIT: Manuscripts should be double spaced and ideally between 3,000 and 10,000 words. A double-blind submission policy will be followed; the author's name should not appear anywhere on the manuscript, but an accompanying cover letter should contain the author's name and address. Consultation on manuscript ideas is welcomed.

Inquiries and submissions may be sent by email to, or to:
Center for Biographical Research
University of Hawai'i at Mänoa
1800 East-West Road #325
Honolulu, Hawai'i 96822 USA
(Tel./Fax 808 956-3774)

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Saturday, December 03, 2005

Ditko = Ditko

I first discovered cartoonist Steve Ditko's work in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man - or, more accurately, in Pocket Books' three-volume Spider-Man Classics series, published in the late 1970s. Technically, the first Ditko art I saw must have been in Origins of Marvel Comics- but the Pocket Spider-Mans gave me hundreds of pages of Ditko artwork, and I devoured them all, over and over again. Ross Andru was the current Spider-Man artist at the time, and I liked that work a lot; but the old books drawn (and often plotted) by Ditko were quirky, instantly recognizable, intensely felt: They were magic, and I couldn't get enough of them (or reprints of his early work on Doctor Strange). Fans of Ditko's Marvel-era work will be interested in the recent Marvel Visionaries: Steve Ditko volume, at right.

It wasn't until years later that I discovered Ditko's own, more personal work, on characters like Static, The Mocker, and - of course - Mr. A (you might still find copies of The Ditko Collection, with lots of Mr A., if you're lucky.) Ditko had become a student of Ayn Rand, and Mr. A. was the living embodiment of Rand's philosophy of "Objectivism": A is A. In Mr. A's world (and in Ditko's) there can be no moral grey areas; there is good, and there is evil, and there is nothing else. I think the icongraphy in the following image (from the Heritage Comics website) makes the stark argument quite clearly, itself:

While I find Ditko's personal work fascinating, I can't say that I could ever agree with it philosophically; I guess I'm too much of a grey-area kind of person. But that doesn't mean that I can't enjoy Mr. A; it's clearly passionate, heart-felt work. How many commercial artists of any stripe are that willing to put their innermost beliefs down on the page, this starkly, with no apologies or hedging?

Thanks to a post by Dr. Chris R. Tame on the Ditko-Kirby email list, I was happy to learn about the following article:
"The Illustrated Rand", by Chris Matthew Sciabarra. The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies 6.1 (2004): 1-20. (Download a PDF version of the entire article here.)
The article, part one of two, catalogues Rand's cultural influence by listing some of the scores of academic journals, magazines, televsion shows, and more media which have quoted or mentioned Rand's work. Unfortunately, the bulk of the article is little more than a list. There's precious litle analysis here, although there may be more extended discussions in part two, which I haven't yet read. We don't even learn if most of these mentions are positive or negative, informed or throw-away.

The largest section of the article by far, however, is devoted to Steve Ditko and Frank (Sin City) Miller (pages 8-12). While the section includes several meaty Mr. A quotes, we still don't find much in the way of analysis. I'd love to learn more about how Objectivism plays out in Ditko's work: How accurately does his work embody the philosophy? Does Ditko's thought expand on, embellish, or even contradict Rand's? Again, perhaps I'm asking too much of an admitted "overview" article; but if anyone out there knows of more critical looks at Ditko's pesonal work, I'd love to hear about them.

And since I haven't mentioned it yet, the premiere website for Ditko is Blake Bell's Ditko Looked Up. Watch for Blake's Steve Ditko: Mysterious Traveller, a biography forthcoming from Fantagraphics. I'm sure that Blake's book will get into the questions I've asked above - and more - with relish.

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