Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - nicholasdiak

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 16
Gothic Pedagogies: teaching, learning, and the literatures of terror
14 July 2022
University of Birmingham

Abstracts due: 30th April 2022
Keynote speakers: Professor Gina Wisker, Dr Ian Burrows

It has been a decade and a half since the last period of sustained work exploring the ways in which gothic literature is, and might be, taught in the classroom. This symposium seeks to renew this important critical discussion. It invites contributions that explore the richness, value, and complexities of pedagogy that situates the careful scrutiny of gothic literature at its heart.

Critical interest in the gothic remains high and the critical field is notable for the breadth of its scholarship; moreover, gothic literature courses at undergraduate and postgraduate level are enduringly popular choices for students, whether they are survey and introductory courses or bespoke Masters-level programmes, and the genre is a mainstay on UK secondary education curricula. But how might recent innovations in the critical field inform, and be informed by, innovations in the classroom? In order to explore this question more fully, we are motivated by several central concerns:

How do we teach gothic literature in the classroom?
What do gothic texts themselves have to say about learning and pedagogy?
How do we negotiate a genre that thrives on forms of affect – what Fred Botting calls the genre’s ‘negative aesthetics’ – that are, by and large, difficult to recapture in classroom environments, and difficult to evaluate cogently?

The gothic undoubtedly wants us to experience its thrills and chills. But it insists frequently on its own unspeakability and seems to prioritise individual susceptibility to its terrorising affect in ways that would suggest a shared experience of the gothic is an extremely difficult thing to recover. In what ways can something that wants quite deliberately to bypass rational thought be better understood via supposedly detached or objective small group discussions in secondary and higher education? How do we bring to light that which is secret and hidden, that which thrives only when briefly glimpsed?

Relatedly, there are questions to be asked here about responsible ways of teaching this literature, grappling as it does with subject matter that may be hoping to deliberately discomfort, shock, or offend its readers. We are interested, also, in what happens when the gothic does not succeed, and how far the gothic is in this respect indicative of broader issues when teaching genre literature. The classroom and lecture theatre might readily make space for the pleasures of reading lurid gothic texts. But what if the gothic text does not scare us (anymore)? If the gothic seeks above all to be experiential, hoping to stimulate certain sensations in its readers, in what ways do we make room in the classroom for our failure to experience something, for those moments when we did not “get it”?

We invite proposals for 15–20 minute papers and joint/collaborative presentations, 5 minute lightning talks, poster presentations, or any other relevant format that reflects on the questions above or any other issues pertaining to humanities pedagogy and the various literatures of terror and horror.
Please send an abstract of 200–300 words and a brief biography (100–150 words) to by 30th April 2022. Please also send any queries our way: we’d be glad to hear them.

We strongly encourage submissions from a range of teachers and students of the gothic, whether working or studying in secondary, further, higher or any other form of education.

CFP: Future Werewolves: Lupine Gothic and Lycanthropy in the 21st Century and Beyond

Any representations of non-traditional werewolves/wolf-hybrids/wolf-like-creatures in any medium (the more Posthuman the better but not vital).
300 word abstract by end June to:

Coreopsis Journal of Myth and Theatre
Call for Papers: Spring 2023: Myths that Kill: Lies, Damn Lies, and Urban Myth

Deadlines: Queries and abstracts: August 2022
Full papers: October 15, 2022
Publication date: February 28, 2023

Urban myth, internet rumors, social media memes, deliberate falsification of information in the media: these all have real world impact. These past several years we have witnessed how a rumor or a myth that contains false information can spread and do serious harm to communities and individuals; how some are deliberately spread by political parties and how others seem to come from nowhere and take on a life of their own. From the insurrection of 1/6/21 to Youtube pseudoscience concerning AIDS, COVID-19, Ebola, and cancer, to religious fakery, theocratic power mongering, and campaigns of oppression and genocide against those who are perceived as different and “the other”. This issue will be devoted to how these myths spread and how they harm people, places, other living creatures, communities, and democracy itself and how communities debunk and counter these myths.

Topics to consider:

How does a community, a society or a country counter these fakeries in popular media, oral folklore, and destructive urban myths? Or does it?
Debunking and dismantling disinformation.
The history and current use of “the blood lie” and other myths concerning minority communities.
Social media and internet memes
Protests and counterprotests: how rumors become viral
Deliberate propaganda and how it is used
"Jailhouse Myth" corruptions of Norse Mythology and racist ideologies.
Urban myth in film, live performance and literature
Medical mythologies in pandemics, cancer treatment, and major illness
RE: the "wellness community" and other movements

To contact the editors and to submit your work, please write to:

Please prepare your paper for blind peer review. Artists and scholars are welcomed in the pages of Coreopsis journal. It is recommended that all writers and artists wishing to submit to Coreopsis Journal familiarise themselves with the guidelines before submission.

Our submission guidelines are here:

Essays from artists do not have to be strictly prepared for review. As Coreopsis Journal is a web-based publication, we can accommodate samples of both audio and video performances.

Visual art submission guidelines:

Please label - clearly - whether your paper or essay is submitted for peer review or as an editorial. Papers submitted for peer review from scholars must be in APA style and prepared for blind review following these guidelines:

This journal accepts papers from many disciplines and is welcoming of all faiths and philosophies. We publish 3-5 papers per issue that have been peer-reviewed according to academic standards. Final submissions should be 3000 to 10,000 words. If you have a finished paper ready for submission, send it directly to

COPE Notice

This journal and her editors, referees, readers, staff and Advisory Board members work, to the best of our abilities, under the guidelines for scholarly publications as set forth by The Committee for Publication Ethics Code of Conduct for Journal Editors. Download the PDF “Code of Conduct for Journal Editors” to learn more.

Coreopsis Journal is published 2X yearly by The Society for Ritual Arts. Never for profit.

Call for Submissions
Multiverse Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention

Event Date & Location: October 14-October 16, 2022, Westin Atlanta Perimeter North, 7 Concourse Parkway in Sandy Springs
Deadline for Submissions: June 30, 2022
Organization Website:
Contact Email: Rhonda Jackson Joseph,


Multiverse Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention was formed from our belief that great stories don’t only come from the books and comics we love to read. Each fan is their own universe as well, with their own unique story to tell. Added together, these infinite stories create the Multiverse of modern fandom.
This Multiverse also informs the creation of works of speculative fiction, a body of work encompassing every imaginable academic field. In this light, we seek to create a multidisciplinary academic program that will showcase the innumerable ways speculative fiction is inspired by various branches of academia. 


Multiverse Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention is seeking academic presentations of 15, 25, and 45 minutes in length for our 2022 convention. While we require presentations to reflect rigorous academic scholarship, we are not requesting conference paper readings. Presentations only, please.
We are seeking presentations that approach an academic topic in a way that non-academic audiences will find accessible and entertaining. Ideally, presentations will incorporate a core theme or topic of interest to speculative fiction fans.

Example topics may include, but are not limited to:

    • An interesting historical event that garners immense speculation. What really happened?
    • A comparison between modern governments and dystopian societies
    • The application of a sociological lens in examining a popular speculative fiction TV show or movie
    • From a scientific angle, could one of the monsters from horror tropes really exist?
    • How might the fantasy elements of speculative fiction lend themselves to child development in teaching various lessons?
    • A chemistry presentation that teaches children how to create spider webbing
    • A presentation on new, emerging technologies or scientific breakthroughs (e.g., artificial intelligence, biotech, space travel, etc.)

Presentations on specific authors, works of fiction, or genres within speculative fiction are also welcome. Of particular interest are presentations on the works of any of our Guests of Honor and/or focuses on voices within speculative fiction that are not typically amplified.

Please note: we would like to include at least one presentation per convention day that fits our theme and is targeted to a child/family audience, so please submit those presentation proposals, as well. Our definition of child/family targeted includes any images, videos, or handouts accompanying the presentation.

Please provide the following in your submission:
    • 300-500 word abstract
    • Preliminary bibliography
    • Length of presentation (15, 25, or 45-minute category)
    • 100-word professional biography (should reflect academic credentials)
    • Any required props or specialized A/V equipment
    • Do you have any special accommodations or additional requests we should be aware of? (any request for a video presentation should be indicated here, please)

    • What are your pronouns?

Email your submissions and/or questions to Rhonda Jackson Joseph at:

Accepted presenters will receive a complimentary convention membership for 2022 and may be invited to participate in other panels within the convention’s other programming tracks. If you would like to be considered for other programming at the convention, separately or in conjunction with your proposed academic presentation, please fill out our guest application here.

Submissions will be accepted on a rolling basis up until June 30th. Acceptances will be sent out by July 31.

Candyman and the Whole Damn Swarm
A Thirtieth Anniversary Conference

30 years ago, Polygram Filmed Entertainment released Candyman, a film loosely adapted from Clive Barker’s short story “The Forbidden”. Unlike Barker’s original text, this Candyman was set in Chicago, specifically the urban ghetto Cabrini Green, and seemed to focus on the tragedy of a Black artist who vengefully returns as a violent ghost after his brutal lynching. The film and its ideologies were complicated. Innovative in its starting point – a story of profound Black suffering which called attention to the racial injustice underpinning US society – audiences were also given a tale which reiterated ideas of Black monstrosity and illogical interracial violence. Notably, the film and its stars went on to win a number of awards, and spawned a franchise worthy of critical exploration.

29 years later, Jordan Peele and Nia DaCosta released the long-awaited Black response to the original film. Released in the midst of another wave of anti-Black violence, the film served as both tribute and corrective to the original, shifting the focus from the white heroine’s quest (the center of the original film) to the terror and pain of Black men made monstrous and the Black women forced to act as witnesses. Ultimately this later film asked audiences “who is the real monster: Candyman, or the violent racist society which created him?”

This conference, a collaboration between the Centre for the History of the Gothic at the University of Sheffield, Fear 2000 at Sheffield Hallam University, and the University of California, Riverside, and taking place on Friday 7 - Sunday 9 October 2022, seeks to explore, critique and celebrate the legacy of Candyman as text, film and, in it’s latest iteration, clapback…

We invite papers that focus on the following themes:
Historical and sociopolitical contexts
Blaxploitation and Black Horror
Monsters and monstrosity
Gender and feminism
Class, gentrification, and race
Ancestral trauma and narratives of violence
Sequels, adaptations, and source materials including: Clive Barker’s short story “The Forbidden”; the original sequels (Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh, 1995 and Candyman: Day of the Dead, 1999); and the 2021 legacy sequel
Transmedia including: advertising, merchandise, gaming, songs, pop culture etc.
Candyman as urban legend and folklore
Sounds of Candyman including film soundtracks and Ice Nine Kill’s “Farewell II Flesh”
Film production 

These are just suggestions and we welcome proposals for 20 minute papers or panel proposals (with three 20 minute papers) exploring any and all aspects of Candyman, its histories and its legacies. We also welcome proposals for nontraditional, creative papers and / or art submissions: see our FAQ for more details or get in touch to discuss your idea.

Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words along with a short bio to The deadline for abstracts is 8 July 2022.

This will be an international hybrid conference taking place in person in Sheffield (UK), Riverside, California (US) and virtually on zoom across different time zones, and as such may be subject to scheduling changes due to COVID restrictions or time zone conflicts. Please see our FAQ before submitting an abstract.


ReFocus: The Films of Jack Arnold

Deadline: May 1, 2022
Contact: Michael L Shuman,

We invite chapter proposals (300-500 words) for an edited volume of critical essays dealing with film director Jack Arnold to be published as part of the University of Edinburgh ReFocus series, which examines overlooked American directors (series editors Robert Singer, Frances Smith, and Gary D. Rhodes).

This edited collection, while emphasizing Arnold’s films in the science fiction and horror fields, will also examine the director’s work in the Western, Comedy, and Detective and Film Noir genres, as well as his innovative use of the emerging 3D film technology and his extensive involvement with television series during his later career.

Jack Arnold, in collaboration with John Landis, had planned a mid-80s rendition of The Lost World, the science fiction novel written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle originally filmed in 1925, employing modern-day special effects technology. That project never advanced beyond the script and story board phases, but in its absence, this missing film provides both tantalizing footnote for film scholars as well as a metaphor for the organizing principle of this edited collection.

Arnold’s films often projected the stereotyped situations and characters typical of 50s and 60s entertainment media but were elevated above these conventions by Arnold’s distinctive use of black and white cinematography, fast-paced action, and the suspenseful, sometimes eerie atmosphere pervading his work. Today’s audiences, attracted by Arnold’s compelling stories and his distinctive style, thus have access to a “lost world” of film conventions, a cinematic landscape where relationships and situations follow predictable and comforting norms and, in doing so, expose essential characteristics of the mid-century social order. The audience experiences, in effect, two distinct lost worlds created by Arnold: one of bygone cinematic conventions portraying an aspirational notion of the social order, and one revealing, if only tangentially, the actual ethics and mores of the time.

Arnold’s influence on contemporary cinema, exemplified by Guillermo del Toro’s appropriation of The Creature from the Black Lagoon’s amphibious being for his film The Shape of Water, demonstrates the director’s ability for identifying timeless narratives and iconic characters and bringing them to movie theaters, sometimes in 3D. This collection examines Arnold’s unique status in film history as both a director with a distinct, compelling style and as a creator of icons, an auteur of imaginative cinema. 

We especially solicit essays on the following films, television shows, and contextual topics:

 Films and TV:

 Science Fiction & Horror

It Came from Outer Space
Creature from the Black Lagoon
Revenge of the Creature
The Incredible Shrinking Man
Monster on Campus
Science Fiction Theatre (TV)
Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (TV)

The Man from Bitter Ridge
 Red Sundown
 No Name on the Bullet
Detective and Film Noir

Girls in the Night                               
Outside the Law
Black Eye
Peter Gunn (TV)
Mr. Lucky (TV)
Ellery Queen (TV)
It Takes a Thief (TV)

The Mouse that Roared
Bachelor in Paradise
A Global Affair
The Bunny Caper
Sex and the Married Woman
The Brady Bunch (TV)
Mr. Terrific (TV)

Contextual Topics:

Jack Arnold’s Influence on Contemporary Cinema
Issues of Representation and Class in Arnold’s Mysteries and Film Noir
Jack Arnold and the Development of Cinematic 3D
Film Conventions vs. the Social Order in the Directorial Work of Jack Arnold
Film to TV: Arnold’s Directorial Style Adapted for the Small Screen
Uncredited: Jack Arnold on Metaluna
The Mouse Re-imagined: The Mouse that Roared in Theatres and on TV
Directing the Stars: Jack Arnold on the Set with Bob Hope, Lana Turner, and Peter Sellers
We also invite essays on your choice of other films, TV episodes, and contextual topics.


Deadline for submission of proposals: May 1, 2022


Important Dates

Proposal Abstract and Author Bio: May 1, 2022

 Decision Date: June 1, 2022

 Final Version of Accepted Projects: October 1, 2022


 Proposal Submission

Interested scholars should send a 300-500 word proposal and a 150 word bio by May 1, 2022, to Michael L. Shuman at:

Michael L. Shuman is Professor of Instruction in the Department of English at University of South Florida. His recent publications in film studies include “Dracula’s Deuce: How Horror Films Haunt Garage and Surf Music,” an analysis of film tropes and popular music for Weird Fiction Review, and “Accidental Outlaw: Agency and Genre in Ida Lupino’s The Bigamist,” a chapter in Ida Lupino, Filmmaker, edited by Phillip Sipiora. An essay on the 1947 film serial Jack Armstrong: All American Boy is forthcoming in ReFocus: The Films of Wallace Fox, edited by Gary D. Rhodes and Joanna Hearne. He is Deputy Editor of The Mailer Review, a publication dedicated to the work of author Norman Mailer, and regularly contributes articles and book reviews to that annual journal. Recent work for the Review includes “When Genres Collide: ‘The Last Night’ as Science Fiction,” a study of Mailer’s 1963 film treatment anticipating global nuclear catastrophe.

Call for Papers: The Aesthetics of Horror in Music Videos (Edited Collection)

Deadline: March 31, 2021
Contact: Miniature Malekpour,

The grotesque and bizarre have accompanied many lyrics and melodies throughout the decades. Whether it is used to fit the Gothic narrative of bands such as Bauhaus and The Cure, or to serve as a device to create buzz surrounding the artist/band, such as the monstrous element of Lady Gaga’s early persona, the shock factor of audiovisual aesthetics has played a pivotal role in the development of contemporary soundscapes. From Michael Jackson’s Zombie infested “Thriller” to The Weeknd’s experimentation of male-gaze induced ultraviolence in “Pretty,” this edited collection looks at the unique history and social-cultural significance of the aestheticization of Horror, which has come to represent one of the multiple facets of how musicians shock their viewers while promoting sales of their albums/records.

We invite proposals from scholars at all stages of their careers.

Possible topics may include but are not limited to:

-          Horror Iconography in Music Videos
-          Horror Music Video Directors
-          Horror Music Video Analysis
-          The Metaphysical use/s of Gothic Iconography in 80’s Music Videos
-          The use of Horror Aesthetics as Homage, Parody, and/or Satire in Music Videos
-          Horror Imagery as Cultural Expression
-          Horror as a tool for Socio/Political Visualization in Music Videos
-          Horror and Music Video Animation
-          Ultraviolence and the Male Gaze in Music Videos
-          The Association of Horror and Heavy Metal Music Videos
-         Shock Value and Surrealism in Music Videos

Submission Details:

Please email proposals of no more than 350 words to Miniature Malekpour at the following email address:

Ghostbusters – A Companion

Deadline: February 28, 2022

The release of Ghostbusters: Afterlife, the fourth installment coming almost 40 years after the original Ghostbusters film, prompts inquiry into this beloved and oftentimes fraught film franchise. While the original and (and its sequel) was a paean to academics becoming the working class heroes who act as the ghost janitors of New York City, the third and fourth films, reimagined with new casts, have become a battleground for who ‘owns’ nostalgia, and have acted as meta-commentaries on the question. As Charles Bramesco wrote in his Guardian review of Ghostbusters: Afterlife, “Perhaps it’s appropriate and telling that the 2021 incarnation of an 80s artifact would be imbued with all the issues most endemic to the current studio release. Here, we can find a damning summary of modern Hollywood’s default mode – a nostalgia object, drained of personality and fitted into a dully palatable mold, custom-made for a fandom that worships everything and respects nothing.” We are asking for essays of 2,500 words that frame a theoretical aspect of the cultural role Ghostbusters plays by centering on one text, whether literary or cinematic, to use as a lens to look at the wider topic. The essays themselves should be accessible but address the big ideas, placing Ghostbusters into cultural and historical context. We are specifically interested in the intersections of gender, race, class, disability and LGBT+ concerns with the franchise, its tie-ins and extended universe. We are particularly interested in hearing from scholars from marginalised groups. We prioritise Own Voices and encourage you to self-identify in your bio for this purpose.

The proposed Companion will be divided into several sections. The topics in each section may include but are not limited to the following, with understanding there is room for crossover:

Ghostbusters (1984)
Ghostbusters 2 (1989)
Ghostbusters: Answer the Call (2016)
Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)

Plus:All soundtracks, trailers, deleted scenes, directors’ commentaries, and tie-in shorts related to the theatrical and home video release of all four films.

Extended Universe
Animated series
Comics and graphic novel adaptations and new series
Multimedia tie-ins
Gaming: board games, video games, handhelds, card games, role playing
Fan fiction: film, art, music FandomLive meetups and regional fan groups
Cosplay, costume and prop makers
Model builders and automobile restoration enthusiastsSmall business tie-ins
Ghost hunters Merchandising/licensingFood tie-ins and merchandising
Vintage toy collectors
Pin Trading
Ghostbusters cameos/callbacks/references in other media

Please send 300 word abstracts and a 50-word bio to editor Cathleen Allyn Conway ( by 28 February 2022 for consideration in the collection, which will be part of the Peter Lang, Oxford Genre, Literature and Film Companion Series.

Fear 2000: Horror Undying (Online)
Sheffield Hallam University, 1–3 July 2022

Submission Deadline: 28 March 2022

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers and 80-minute panels to be presented at the sixth Fear 2000 conference, Fear 2000: Horror Undying. Hosted by staff and postgraduate students in the Centre for Culture, Media and Society and the Department of Media Arts and Communication at Sheffield Hallam University, this online conference will explore connections between twenty-first century horror and the genre’s history.

Taking inspiration from the recent trend for ‘legacy sequels’ such as Blair Witch (2016), The Exorcist (2016–2017), Halloween (2018), Spiral (2021), Candyman (2021), Chucky (2021– ), Scream (2022) and Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022), Fear 2000: Horror Undying aims to form social, cultural, political, industrial and textual links between horror past and present. The conference will discuss contemporary horror media through topics such as franchising, sequelisation, remaking, adaptation, nostalgia, intertextuality, homage, pastiche and parody. It will also investigate historic themes, issues, styles, modes and sub-genres that have recurred post-2000. Any paper that aims to explore the historical legacy of the horror genre in the new millennium will be considered.

Our first keynote speaker for this event will be Stella Gaynor (University of Salford), author of the forthcoming monograph Viewer Discretion is Advised: Rethinking Horror in the New Economies of Television, who will discuss historic franchise properties on contemporary TV. Further keynote lectures will be announced via our website and social media channels. The programme will also include special events to be announced.

This three-day conference will take place on 1-3 July 2022. The deadline for proposals is 28 March 2022. For individual papers, please send an abstract (maximum 300 words) and bio (maximum 75 words) to Craig Ian Mann (, Chris Cooke ( and Oliver Hicks ( Your submission should be in .doc or .docx format if possible and include your name, the title of your paper and your institutional affiliation (if applicable; independent scholars are welcomed).

We also seek proposals for 80-minute panels comprising three speakers; if you would like to propose a panel, please keep submissions to a maximum of 1000 words and include abstracts, institutional affiliations and contact information for all speakers and a chair. Panels should run to no more than 80 minutes.

Please direct any informal enquiries to the organisers using the email addresses listed above.

You can also find information on the conference via the following channels:

Twitter (
Facebook (
Web (

CFP: Born to Be Bad?: Critical Essays on the Heritage of Evil

Children, particularly tweens and teens, are essentially liminal creatures; neither fully adults nor entirely child-like. This status, as neither one thing nor the other, can breed distrust in adults regarding their behavior, morality, or ideas. Indeed, moral panics, such as Satanism in the 1980s, juvenile delinquency in the 1950s, or the “lost” generation of the Great Depression are targeted particularly at this age group, coloring them as suspect primarily because of their age and potential susceptibility to pernicious influences. One can see this play out across multiple genres and mediums, from films such as The Bad Seed or The Good Son featuring murderous tween sociopaths, to procedurals such as Law & Order (and its spinoffs), which offered multiple episodes following the theme of the “soulless” tween or teen committing horrific acts, made more horrific by their ages. Yet the appellation can also be applied more broadly–and incorrectly–to those who don’t fit the supposed social norms, are raised in problematic or actively toxic environments, or who protest against injustice. Thus in this collection we would like to see examinations of the supposed “evil” child in the 20th and 21st centuries across multiple (global) mediums, both those who commit horrendous acts or merely don’t fit in with their environment and/or adult expectations, or embrace their environment or seek to transcend their upbringing. 

Abstracts of 300 words to be sent to the editors Erin Giannini and Simon Bacon by the end of August 2022 at: and


When Jordan Peele’s Get Out made its big screen debut in 2010, it was met with instant, widespread praise among worldwide audiences for its creative blending of horror conventions and social commentary. As part of the horror film trend known as “social horror” (Heba, 1995; Kronja, 2016), Get Out championed the filmic representation of sociopolitical ideologies in the United States at a time when horror codes and sociocultural issues acquired recognized critical distinction. Parallel to current divisive sociopolitical disagreement, contemporary horror movies are emerging as a reproduction of what dominates popular culture and the current political framework: culture wars.

In the 2010 book, Culture War? The Myth of a Polarized America, M. Fiorina, J. Abrams and J. Pope turned the spotlight on commonly believed myths about American sociopolitical reality, claiming that Western civilization and, specifically, the United States are deeply divided in their fundamental political views. Confrontations between social conservative and progressive forces in American society, described as “culture wars” by sociologist James D. Hunter (1991), are as much a reality today as they were in the past. Beginning in the 1960s, the United States has experienced a partisan conflict over cultural issues such as gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, religion, immigration and ecology which is actively exported as a model to other cultural spheres, such as contemporary cinema. According to theses on the present-day existence of culture wars, salient battles have led contemporary cinema to characterize these issues as “new fronts in the culture war” (Castle 2018), thereby giving reasons to revisit the culture wars debate.

This edited volume seeks to examine recent culture wars manifestations in American popular culture, considering their impact and representation in the field of horror cinema. In many contemporary examples of the genre, these ideologically charged battles over opposing moral values and fundamental belief systems are a substantial part of the definition and development of horror films. Night of the Living Dead (1968) as a commentary on Cold War paranoia and racism, or Rosemary’s Baby (1968), as an allegory of women’s liberation, are two good examples of the penetration of social references in the genre. In this way, American horror film hinges on cinematically constructed fears of the Other, an Otherness “both drawn from and constitutive of any given era’s cultural history” (Benshoff 2000:31). However, the changing spectrum of filmmakers, producers and other agents involved in the making of these films in the 21st century has reached a turning point pitting the “normal” (white, middle-class, heterosexual, male) vs. the “monstrous” (defined by racial, sexual, class, gender, ideological markers). In this horror film trend, the “monster”, the foregrounded “other” is rooted in historically specific cultural and social horrors, which set the stage for the ideological depiction of contemporary culture wars.

The horror genre has long been ripe for social commentary precisely because it subverts the idea of what “villainous” is, allowing us to subtly empathize with the subject we fear while exploring why we fear it (Solórzano and Yosso 2002). In other words, these marginalized subjects become narrative agents who take possession of the gaze, and whose act of looking emerges from them. Moreover, culture wars and horror cinema do not shy away from the most diverse polarized issues: from religious dilemmas, immigration, and gender violence to racism or ecological consciousness. We are not only concerned with horror genre conventions and their sociocultural references, but also with the way in which the genre appropriates a divisive, polarized society, and what results from this situation in a global context. Thus, for example, consider the way Happy Death Day (2017), Antebellum (2020) or The Invisible Man (2020) can be analyzed as operating in the Black Lives Matter and #MeToo context by mobilizing horror film conventions to represent polarized social views as they are experienced today.
The widespread social discontent with recent political actions has been connected to recent horror films, which can be taken to be examples of a critical framework that attempts to understand social divisions today. Therefore, we ask ourselves the following: How can we create a framework for the analysis of conflicting and divisive sociocultural representations in contemporary horror cinema? Are American horror films becoming more polarized in their representation of social values? Have movements such as #MeToo, Black Lives Matter or new narratives of slavery in film contributed to making this trend even more salient? Which conventions of the genre challenge traditional values and ideals within 21st century horror cinema? By what means are these movies taking sides on the current culture wars?

Contributors to this edited volume are invited to critically analyze the ways in which the ideology of culture wars has made its way through recent American horror cinema across different nations, topics and visual aesthetics. From indigeneity, race criticism, religion and ecology to issues such as post-feminism, gender violence, immigration, and social media as surveillance, the areas and films to be explored include but are not limited to:

• The relationship of social horror and indigeneity (The Dead Can’t Dance, 2013; Violet, 2015)
• Horror articulations of the Neo-slavery and the Old South (Get Out, 2017; Antebellum, 2020)
• Gender/Genre: the culture wars in the #MeToo era (The Perfection, 2018; The Invisible Man, 2020)
• Spaces and limits of the culture wars: borders, race, ethnicity (Planet Terror, 2007; Vampires vs. The Bronx, 2020)
• Endangered society and nature: Eco-horror (Take Shelter, 2011; The Incident, 2014)
• Representations and constructions of culture wars and immigration (Don’t Breathe,
2016; His House, 2020)
• Postmodern social horror: parody, pastiche, self-reflective humor (Happy Death Day,
2017; Midsommar,2019)
• Religion, faith and the Southern Gothic: (The Skeleton Key, 2005; Mother!, 2017)
• Horror, surveillance, and social media (Ratter, 2015; Spree, 2020)
• Social horror and late capitalism (The Purge, 2013; A Quiet Place, 2018)
• The monster as a symbol of Othering vs. a figure of resistance
• The reception of social horror movies: cinematic responses to the culture wars

If you are interested in proposing a chapter, please send an abstract of 400- 500 words and a short biographical note including the author’s academic affiliation no later than 21st March 2022 to

Manuscripts should not have been previously published, and should not be submitted simultaneously for publication in another edited volume collection or medium.

March 21, 2022: abstract submission
April 1, 2022: notification of acceptance/rejection September 15, 2022: paper submission
2023: Expected publication in a major publisher

Noelia Gregorio-Fernández (UNED) Assistant Professor of American Literature and Culture at the Department of Foreign Languages, Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Madrid.
Carmen M. Méndez-García (UCM) Associate Professor of American Literature at the Department of English Studies, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

CFP: “They Came From Beneath”: Critical Readings of Subterranean Realms and Those that Come From Them.

Underground,  underwater, underneath, under-our-world. The monsters, villains, and even heroes, that haunt our dreams, our subconscious, our waking, daylight world have stories to tell and lessons to teach us, but of what, for whom, and why?

Abstracts of 300 words to Leslie Ormandy and Simon Bacon by end May 2022:

University of Wales Press is seeking proposals for their Gothic Literary Studies Series.

PDF can be found here:

Copy and paste of flyer:


Gothic Literary Studies is the University of Wales Press’s award-winning series dedicated to publishing ground-breaking scholarship on the Gothic genre. We are actively commissioning pioneering research which analyses the diverse and emerging trends in the Gothic.

Volumes in the series explore how issues such as gender, religion, nation and sexuality have shaped our view of the Gothic tradition, and are informed by the latest developments in critical theory.

GLS currently features over twenty-five titles, including three winners of the Allan Lloyd Smith Memorial Prize: Gothic Music: The Sounds of the Uncanny by Isabella van Elferen, The Twilight of the Gothic? Vampire Fiction and the Rise of the Paranormal Romance by Joseph Crawford, and The Gothic and the Carnivalesque in American Culture by Timothy Jones.

Individual titles will ideally be original monographs or edited collections of around eighty thousand words, intended for an academic and global readership.


The University of Wales Press’s Gothic Authors: Critical Revisions series focuses on innovative introductions to writers of the Gothic, including Mary Shelley, Richard Marsh, and Bram Stoker. We are seeking original scholarship which can serve as accessible and engaging guides for students and teachers of the Gothic. Ideal manuscripts will be around sixty to eighty thousand words, on the subject of an author who has made a significant contribution to the Gothic.

For either series, please send initial expressions of interest to Sarah Lewis, Commissioning Editor (, or to the series editors Professor Andrew Smith, Sheffield University (, and Professor Benjamin F. Fisher, University of Mississippi (

For more information on our series, please visit our website:

There Can Be Only One: Critical Essays on the Highlander Franchise

Abstract submission deadline: May 31, 2022

Essays of 4,000 – 6,000 words deadline: December 10, 2022

There Can Be Only One.  This phrase was made popular 35 years ago with the release of Highlander, a fantasy action-adventure film directed by Russell Mulcahy and starring Christophe Lambert, Sean Connery, and Clancy Brown.  While it did not turn a profit during its theatrical release, it did become a cult film inspiring several sequels, three television series, original novels, comic books, audio books, video games, a web series, collectibles, musical scores, and a loyal fandom who have successfully organized a number of Highlander fan conventions. 

Over the years, aspects of this franchise become part of popular culture’s lexicon, such as the enduring Queen album, A Kind of Magic with iconic phrases (“Princes of the Universe”/“There Can Be Only One”), and dramatic imagery (electrifying beheadings and portrayals of historic events/places). Since 2008, there have been discussions of remakes and reboots and most recently in May 2021 with Henry Cavill proposed to have a lead role. 

Interestingly, other than franchise retrospectives, soundtrack analysis, and film reviews, there are no singular books of scholarly focus.  This proposed transmedia book will seek to address this gap by collecting a series of essays that provide a focused exploration of the Highlander franchise.

The editor seeks essays exploring any aspect of the Highlander franchise in films/television, literature, comics, video games, and any other popular culture medium such as:

Films: Highlander (1986, Russell Mulcahy); Highlander II: The Quickening (1991, Russell Mulcahy); Highlander III: The Sorcerer (1995, Andy Morahan); Highlander: Endgame (2000, Doug Aarniokoski); Highlander: The Source (2007, Brett Leonard); Highlander: The Search for Vengeance (2007, Yoshiaki Kawajiri)

Television series: Highlander: The Series (1992-1998); Highlander: The Animated Series (1994-1996); Highlander: The Raven (1998-1999)

Books:  Highlander: Die Ruckkehr des Unsterblichen (Highlander: The Return of the Immortal, 1994, Martin Eisele and Hans Sommer); Highlander: The Element of Fire (1995, Jason Henderson); Highlander: Scimitar (1996, Ashley McConnell); Highlander: Scotland the Brave (1996, Jennifer Roberson); Highlander: Measure of a Man (1997, Nancy Holder); Highlander: The Path (1997, Rebecca Neason); Highlander: Zealot (1997, Donna Lettow); Highlander: Shadow of Obsession (1998, Rebecca Neason); Highlander: The Captive Soul (1998, Josepha Sherman); Highlander: White Silence (1999, Ginjer Buchanan); Highlander: An Evening at Joe’s (2002, written by cast/crew of Highlander: The Series)

Comics: Highlander comic book series (Dynamite Entertainment); Highlander 3030 (Emerald Star Comics)

Video games: Highlander (1986, PC); Highlander: The Last of the MacLeods (1995, Atari Jaguar CD)

Audio: Highlander: The Original Scores (1995); Queen’s A Kind of Magic (1986); Big Finish Productions’ Highlander audio stories; Highlander: A Celtic Opera

Web series: The Methos Chronicles (2001)

Collectibles: Highlander: The Card Game (La Montagnard Inc.)

Fan derivative works: film, fiction, etc.

Essays that take an interdisciplinary approach to the subject matter and/or can apply a variety of lenses and frameworks, such as, but not limited to, are encouraged:

Close textual analysis
Comparative analysis
Cult/secret societies
Cultural and ethnic
Fandom and fan studies
Film studies
Gender/LGBTQIA+ studies
Historic analysis
Literature studies
Media and communications
Media Sociology
Racial studies
The editor will review multiple abstract submissions to assemble the most cohesive arrangement of entertaining/insightful essays that will provide a well-rounded exploration and representation of this popular franchise.  Additionally, the editor is seeking essays that balance an academic and armchair enthusiast tone to ensure the widest audience appeal. The deadlines are:

05/31/2022: Abstract of 300 – 500 words, brief CV, and preliminary draft bibliography emailed to the editor.
06/10/2022: Notification of acceptance/rejection.  Successful essayists will be sent a comprehensive style sheet.
12/10/2022:  Essays of 4,000 – 6,000 words in length are due to the editor.  Earlier submissions are welcomed and encouraged.
12/10/2022 – 05/10/2023: Essays will be edited and returned to each author for review and revision. 
05/11/2023 – 11/11/2023: Manuscript will be peer reviewed.  The editor will work with essayists to address all peer review notes and finalize each essay.
11/30/2023: Final manuscript sent to the publisher.


The editor will be utilizing Microsoft Word’s Track Changes function to record all edits.  It will be the writer’s responsibility to resolve each edit and submit a final clean essay by the deadline noted above.

Contributors will receive a complimentary book copy when published.  Postage will be paid by the editor.

For team written essays, keep to a maximum of two co-authors.

The editor encourages the widest possible diverse representation to submit to this call for papers.
Please direct all correspondence to Michele Brittany, Editor, at

The Mouse’s Monsters at PCA: Further Examples of Monsters and the Monstrous in the Worlds of Disney
Sponsored Session Proposed for the 2022 Virtual Conference of the Popular Culture Association

Virtual event: 13-16 April 2022.
Proposals due: 21 January 2022
At its 2021 Virtual Conference, the Monsters & the Monstrous Area and the Disney Studies Areas of the Northeast Popular Culture/American Culture Association (a.k.a. NEPCA) organized three successful sessions on the theme of monsters and the monstrous in the fictional worlds of the Walt Disney Company.
We’d like to continue to build on those investigations this coming spring at the national meeting of the Popular Culture Association (a.k.a. PCA) and to also help support the PCA’s new Disney Studies Special Topic Area.

For this session, we’re most interested in proposals related to representations of monsters and the monstrous in the traditional Disney brand and in Pixar, but papers related to more recent properties and acquisitions (for example ABC, ABC Family/Freeform, Hulu, Lucasfilm, Marvel, the Muppets, Saban Entertainment, and Twentieth Century Fox) can be also be valid approaches. All submissions will also be considered for inclusion in a collection of essays based on the topic.

Potential topics might include the following:
    • Adaptations of classic monster stories.
    • Aliens.
    • Animals as monsters.
    • Attractions.
    • Bad dreams.
    • Communities of monsters.
    • Constructs.
    • Cryptids.
    • Curses.
    • Dinosaurs.
    • Disguises.
    • Disney as monstrous.
    • Disney Villains.
    • Gargoyles.
    • Ghosts.
    • Halloween.
    • Halloween-themed productions.
    • Haunted houses (and mansions)
    • Horror-themed productions.
    • Human “monsters”.
    • Imaginary creatures.
    • Legendary creatures.
    • Magical creatures.
    • Magic-users.
    • Othered individuals.
    • Reanimated dead.
    • Shape-shifters.
    • Technology and monsters.
    • Undead/zombies.
    • Underworld and other realms of the dead.
    • Vampires.
    • Weather-related monsters.
    • Witchcraft/witches and wizards.

If you are interested in joining this session, please submit your information into PCA’s online system at You’ll need to create a profile and upload a biographical statement AND join the PCA for the coming year before the system will allow you to reach the proposal screen. Be sure to select “Disney Studies” as the area for your paper. Proposals should be about 250 words.

Please also send a copy of your proposal to the session organizers, so we can keep track of them: Michael A. Torregrossa (NEPCA’s Monsters & the Monstrous Area Chair) at and Priscilla Hobbs (NEPCA’s Disney Studies Area Chair) at

Further details on PCA’s Disney Studies Special Topic Area can be found at
NEPCA’s Monsters & the Monstrous Area maintains a blog at

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 16