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Call for Chapters: Japanese Horror: New Critical Approaches to History, Narratives and Aesthetics (Extended Deadline)

deadline for submissions:
November 25, 2019

full name / name of organization:
Subashish Bhattacharjee (Jawaharlal Nehru University), Ananya Saha (Jawaharlal Nehru University) and Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns (Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina)

contact email:

Call for Chapters: Japanese Horror: New Critical Approaches to History, Narratives and Aesthetics (Extended Deadline).

Edited by Subashish Bhattacharjee (Jawaharlal Nehru University),

Ananya Saha (Jawaharlal Nehru University)

Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns (Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina)

Cathedra of Film and Literature

The cultural phenomenon of Japanese Horror has been of the most celebrated cultural exports of the country, being witness to some of the most notable aesthetic and critical addresses in the history of modern horror cultures. Encompassing a range of genres and performances including cinema, manga, video games, and television series, the loosely designated genre has often been known to uniquely blend ‘Western’ narrative and cinematic techniques and tropes with traditional narrative styles, visuals and folklores. Tracing back to the early decades of the twentieth century, modern Japanese horror cultures have had tremendous impact on world cinema, comics studies and video game studies, and popular culture, introducing many trends which are widely applied in contemporary horror narratives. The hybridity that is often native to Japanese aestheticisation of horror is an influential element that has found widespread acceptance in the genres of horror. These include classifications of ghosts as the yuurei and the youkai; the plight of the suffering individual in modern, industrial society, and the lack thereof to fend for oneself while facing circumstances beyond comprehension, or when the features of industrial society themselves produce horror (Ringu, Tetsuo, Ju on); settings such as damp, dank spaces that reinforce the idea of morbid, rotten return from the afterlife (Dark Water)—these are features that have now been rather unconsciously assimilated into the canon of Hollywood or western horror cultures, and may often be traced back to Japanese Horror (or J-Horror) cultures. Besides the often de facto reliance on gore and violence, the psychological motif has been one of the most important aspects of Japanese Horror cultures. Whether it is supernatural, sci-fi or body horror, J-Horror cultures have explored methods that enable the visualising of depravity and violent perversions, and the essence of spiritual and material horror in a fascinating fashion, inventing the mechanics of converting the most fatal fears into visuals.

The proposed volume will focus on directors and films, illustrators and artists and manga, video game makers/designers and video games that have helped in establishing the genre firmly within the annals of world cinema, popular culture and imagination, and in creating a stylistic paradigm shift in horror cinema across the film industries of diverse nations. We seek essays on J-Horror sub-genres, directors, illustrators, designers and their oeuvre, the aesthetics of J-Horror films, manga, and video games, styles, concepts, history, or particular films that have created a trajectory of J-Horror cultures. Works that may be explored in essay-length studies include, but are not limited to, Kwaidan, Onibaba, Jigoku, Tetsuo: The Iron Man and its sequels, Audition, Fatal Frame, the Resident Evil game franchise, Siren, Uzumaki, Gyo, Tomie, besides the large number of Japanese horror films that have been remade for the US market, including Ringu, Ju on, Dark Water, and Pulse among others, and a host of video games with Western/American settings (such as the Silent Hill franchise) and film adaptations (Resident Evil franchise)—analysing the shift from the interactive game form to consumable horror in the cinematic form. For adaptations, we are also looking for essays that analyse the shift from the interactive game form or image-and-text form to consumable audiovisual horror in the form of cinema and vice versa. Analyses of remakes could also focus on the translatability of Japanese horror vis-à-vis American or Hollwood-esque horror, and how the Hollywood remakes have often distilled western horror cinematic types to localise the content.

Directors, designers and manga artists working in the ambit of Japanese horror cultures who may be discussed include, but are not limited to, Nobuo Nakagawa, Kaneto Shindo, Masaki Kobayashi, Hideo Nakata, Takashi Miike, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Ataru Oikawa, Takashi Shimizu, Hideo Kojima, Junji Ito, Kazuo Umezu, Shintaro Kago, Katsuhisa Kigtisu, Gou Tanabe and others. Other issues that may be explored in J-Horror cultures may include the issue of violence and gore, gender and sexuality, sexual representation, the types of the supernatural, cinematic techniques and narrative techniques and others.

At this stage we are looking for abstracts for proposed chapters up to 500 words within November 25th, 2019, but complete papers will be well received. The papers must be written according to the MLA stylesheet, following the rules of the 7th Edition handbook, with footnotes instead of endnotes. All submissions (Garamond, 1.5 pt line spacing) must be accompanied by an abstract (200-250 words) and a short bio-biblio of the author. Images, if used, should preferably be free from copyright issues—sourced from creative commons/copyright-free sources, or permissions should be obtained from relevant copyright holders.

Enquiries and submissions are to be directed to Subashish Bhattacharjee, Ananya Saha and Fernando Pagnoni Berns at

Subashish Bhattacharjee is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of North Bengal, India. He edits the interdisciplinary online journal The Apollonian, and is the Editor of Literary Articles and Academic Book Reviews of Muse India. His doctoral research, on the cultures of built space, is from the Centre for English Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, where he has also been a UGC-Senior Fellow. His recent publications include Queering Visual Cultures (Universitas, 2018), and New Women’s Writing (Cambridge Scholars, co-edited with GN Ray, 2018).

Ananya Saha is a PhD scholar in the Centre for English Studies, JNU, New Delhi. Her research is on the idea of the ‘outsider’ in Japanese and non-Japanese manga vis-a-vis globalization. Other research interests include Fandom and Queer studies, Translation theory and practice, New Literatures and so on. She has published in international journals, including Orientaliska Studier (No 156), from the Nordic Association of Japanese and Korean Studies. She is the co-editor of the volume titled Trajectories of the Popular: Forms, Histories, Contexts (2019), published by AAKAR, New Delhi. She has been the University Grants Fellow, SAP-DSA-(I) in the Centre for English Studies, JNU (2016-17), and has been awarded a DAAD research visit grant to Tuebingen University, Germany under the project “Literary Cultures of Global South.”

Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns is an Assistant Professor at the Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA) – Facultad de Filosofía y Letras (Argentina)-. He teaches courses on international horror film and is director of the research group on horror cinema “Grite.” He has published chapters in the books To See the Saw Movies: Essays on Torture Porn and Post 9/11 Horror, edited by John Wallis, Critical Insights: Alfred Hitchcock, edited by Douglas Cunningham, A Critical Companion to James Cameron, edited by Antonio Sanna, and Gender and Environment in Science Fiction, edited by Bridgitte Barclay, among others. He has authored a book about Spanish horror TV series Historias para no Dormir.

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Edited Volume CFP

Not Dead, But Dreaming: Reading Lovecraft in the 21st Century

In the one hundred and twenty-nine years since his birth, H. P. Lovecraft’s reputation has grown beyond all expectation. Not only has he influenced generations of readers, but he has also influenced scores of people in areas such as filmmaking, television, comics, music, and literary theory. Because interest in Lovecraft continues to grow, our intention is to explore some of the reasons why he has become so influential—and so indispensable—since the early 1990s. From his stories of human degeneration that started with “The Tomb” and “Dagon” to the cosmic horror that culminated in The Shadow out of Time and “The Haunter of the Dark,” the less than 20 years that Lovecraft devoted to a career in fiction produced narratives that remain popular among a growing number of readers who follow his work from multiple areas of interest. Additionally, Lovecraft’s literary production in general has also become increasingly relevant from an academic perspective since at least the 1990s. In this volume, we want to reflect on the possible reasons for Lovecraft’s expanding popularity and the significance of his legacy as we entered the digital age. Consequently, we are interested in research that focuses on the significance of Lovecraft’s work from the 1990s to the present day.

Possible topics to explore in the work of Lovecraft and its connection with the 1990s to the present might include, but are not limited to:

• The Anthropocene
• Influence in videogames
• Lovecraft Adaptations, including his influence on film and art in general
• Lovecraft’s philosophical thought
• Lovecraft’s poetry
• Lovecraft related RPGs and LARs
• Lovecraftian families
• Object Oriented Ontology
• Posthumanism
• Postmodernism

Please send a proposal of about 500 words, for chapters of 6000-7000 words, and a short biography to Tony Alcala or Carl Sederholm, by 30 Nov 2019.

Contributors can expect to be selected and notified by 15th December 2019. The deadline for submission of completed articles will be 30 May 2019.

Threshold, Boundary, and Crossover in Fantasy

Organised by the University of York Fantasy Discussion Group

To be held in York 12th-13th March 2020

Keynote speakers: Professor George P. Landow (Emeritus Professor, Brown) and Dr. Rob Maslen (University of Glasgow)

‘There was nothing Lucy liked so much as the smell and feel of fur. She immediately stepped into the wardrobe and got in among the coats and rubbed her face against them, leaving the door open, of course, because she knew that it is very foolish to shut oneself into any wardrobe. Soon she went further in and found that there was a second row of coats hanging up behind the first one. It was almost quite dark in there and she kept her arms stretched out in front of her so as not to bump her face into the back of the wardrobe. She took a step further in – then two or three steps – always expecting to feel woodwork against the tips of her fingers. But she could not feel it.’ – C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, first published in 1950.

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers on the subject of ‘threshold, boundary, and crossover’ in fantasy. Creative interpretation of the theme is encouraged, and particular precedence will be given to papers looking at interdisciplinarity in fantasy studies. We wish to push the limits of how we interpret and understand fantasy as a categorical term, interrogating the idea put forward by art historian Walter Schurian that ‘the fantastic can also be found in other fields of art, such as literature, architecture, music and film; fantastical tendencies and currents can even be observed in the natural sciences, for example in the form of unusual, chance opinions and theories.’ As such, we welcome papers from scholars working in any field or discipline. Some thematic prompts include, but are not limited to:

Juxtaposition, comparison, overlap
Cross-media studies
The monstrous
Cross-cultural exchange
International exchange
National fantasies
Gender, Sexuality
The body
Selfhood, self and other
The alien
Interethnic relationships
Schools of thought
Children/ YA/ Adult
Journey, pilgrimage, passage
Time and space
Ancient/ Medieval/ Modern/ Contemoprary
Between worlds
Frames, framing devices and literal thresholds
Portals and transportation
Genre, categorisation, classification
Ideas of here and there
The real and unreal
Youth and age
Fantasy and science fiction

To submit a proposal, please send (in one document) a biography of c. 100 words and a paper abstract of no more than 400 words to by September 13th 2019. Queries can be directed to this email address also.

N.B. We also welcome and encourage non-traditional forms of participation and presentation, i.e. performances, cosplay, lightning presentations (1 slide & 5 minutes), speed panels, poster discussions, and other. For non-traditional presentations, please outline your delivery proposal when submitting.

Please join us in Orlando, Florida, March 18-22, 2020 for the 41st International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts (ICFA) when our theme will be “Climate Change and the Anthropocene.”

Since the turn of the millennium, the term Anthropocene has been widely popularized to describe the massive changes humanity has inflicted upon the planet through our technologies and ways of living—influences so substantial that some believe we have entered into a new geological epoch. Climate change, and its related crises of ecological damage, forced migrations as weather and arable land shift, and mass extinctions of nonhuman species, are imaginative and materially entwined. Climate change asks us to think in spatial and temporal scales that exceed human lifetimes and perceptions, while the concept of the Anthropocene encourages us to think in global, perhaps cosmic registers about humanity’s pasts and possible futures.

Amitov Ghosh suggests in The Great Derangement (2017) that among the difficulties of confronting climate change is the fact that it is “unthinkable” via the conventions of realist fiction. Taking our cue from Ursula K. Le Guin’s phrase “realists of a larger reality” in her acceptance speech for the Medal for Distinguished Contributions to American Letters, ICFA 41 will explore the power of fantastic genres to make climate change and other crises of the Anthropocene visible and intelligible. How have fantastic genres helped us represent and respond to this reality? How might these genres offer us new ways for thinking about humanity, our planet, and the complex entanglements between them? How might we reimagine ourselves and the future in the face of climate change? We welcome papers, creative works, and panel discussions addressing these and related questions across any genre, every language, and across all media of the fantastic.

Possible topics might include, but are not limited to:
• Texts engaging questions of eco-horror aesthetics and themes
• Fantastic texts by that explore Indigenous worldviews on ecology
• Analyses of how specific motifs or themes emerge and change with time, such as climate-driven apocalypse or images of urban worlds
• Texts that imagine innovative technologies and/or new lifeways that offer new patterns for human habitation
• Texts or other media that interrogate questions of ontology, especially humanity’s relationship with other life
• Engagements with alternative terms used to frame our present era—Donna Haraway’s Cthulhucene, Jason Moore’s Capitalocene, and the like
• Work emerging from ecocritical frameworks and methodologies
• Work emerging from posthumanist frameworks and methodologies, especially human-animal studies
• Work emerging from environmental humanities and petrocultures frameworks and methodologies
• Dystopian and/or utopian responses to climate change
• YA and children’s literature and its distinct strategies for representing climate change
• Work on significant authors of ecologically themed works, such as Kim Stanley Robinson or N.K. Jemisin or the subgenre solarpunk
• Analyses of texts or other media that question the human/animal boundary
• The role of fantastic texts in offering new theoretical rubrics for thinking about climate change and the Anthropocene

The conference will feature Guest Scholar Stacy Alaimo (University of Texas at Arlington) and Guest of Honor Jeff VanderMeer. We encourage proposals that engage the work of these two distinguished guests.

Please submit proposals via the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts Portal ( by October 31, 2019. Further instructions regarding submissions are available at this link, including instructions regarding IAFA’s Division Structure and Division Head contact information where questions may be sent.

Call for Chapters: “Polyptych: Adaptation, Television, and Comics”

Vernon Press invites chapter proposals on Adaptation in Comics and Television for an edited collection Polyptych: Adaptation, Television, and Comics, edited by Reginald Wiebe (Concordia University of Edmonton).

All areas of study, with a common goal of engaging the cultural, social, philosophical, and material significance of the reciprocal adaptation of television and comicbooks are invited to participate.

Comicbooks and television have been adapting almost as long as either has existed, yet scant work has been done on the relationship between these two mass media. Adaptation theory helps us navigate a world of transmedia properties and media conglomerates where models of stable text and singular author have little useful purchase. The creative collaboration and corporate origin of these projects demands more than a reading for theme; rather, the nature of the relationship between comicbooks and television requires a range of interpretive strategies.

The scope of the present call is broad. All topics regarding the intersection of adaptation, television, and comics will be considered. Possible topics include:

television adaptations of comicbooks
comicbook adaptations of television shows
comicbooks adapted from television shows that were themselves adapted from comicbooks (e.g. DuckTales, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Superboy, Batman ’66, Smallville, the comics based on the CW’s “Arrow-verse” suite of shows)
parallel development of brands within comicbooks and television (e.g. Transformers, GI Joe, The Walking Dead)
Television series that continued as comicbooks after ending (e.g. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, Jericho, The Legend of Korra)
the parallel material history of comicbooks and television
serialization and narrative strategies on comicbooks and television
the role of comicbook adaptations before the advent of the VCR and home entertainment
the role of comicbook adaptations after the advent of the VCR and home entertainment
popular but critically neglected adaptations such as Archie, Tintin, Casper the Friendly Ghost, The Addams Family, and Adventure Time
Deadline for proposals: January 1, 2020

Deadline for first drafts: July 1, 2020

How to submit your proposal

Please submit one-page proposals (200 words approx.) including an annotated summary and a short biographical note.

For further questions or to submit your proposal, you can email Reginald Wiebe (

A paper that has been published previously may not be included.

Selected abstracts will be notified by the end of January 2020, and full chapters should be submitted by July 1, 2020. Complete chapter lengths should be between 6000-7000 words.

For more information, please click here.

Gothflix, A Conference

1st-2nd February 2020 – Lancaster University

This conference was born following a discussion between Luke (Lancaster University) and Jess (University of Liverpool) the night before Sheffield’s Reimagining the Gothic 2019 conference where they were together presenting on a group panel on The Good Place (2016) – a tentative plan for another group panel the next year quickly evolved into something else entirely, a whole conference on Netflix and the Gothic.

With over 100-million subscribers, Netflix has exploded into popular culture having become not just a medium for consumption but also, since 2012, a creator and producer of its own content. Much of its programming makes nods to the Gothic, whether this be more obvious through its Horror and Fantasy programming such as Hemlock Grove (2013) and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018) or the more subtle like The Crown (2016). Catherine Spooner writes that ‘Gothic sells’ and Netflix has created a means not only for the Gothic to be sold but streamed directly into the household at any time, not limited by scheduling or network censorship. We look forward to the many interesting and exciting papers as well as to announcing our keynote.

We are inviting papers of 20-minutes in length on any paper which explores the links between Netflix and the Gothic.* Group panels are also welcome and must consist of 3-4 papers each of 20 minutes length.

Papers may consider any of a variety of topics and Netflix Original texts; possible foci for papers may include but are not limited to the subjects and texts below:

· The nature of streaming and how it affects our consumption of texts.

· How have series such as Lucifer (2019) been altered in their transfer to Netflix from cable television?

· The use of algorithms to tailor our Netflix experience.

· Text focused papers on any of the many ‘Netflix Originals’.

· The shared experience of consuming streamed media.

· The effect of binge watching on the viewing of television series and on viewing of Horror.

Please submit a title, 300-word abstract, and a 50-word bionote in a single document for consideration by 11pm on the 31st October 2019 to For group panels, please submit your papers as separate documents together in a single email. You will usually receive a confirmation email within 48 hours confirming receipt of your submission.

Keep up with the news about the conference by following @gothflix on Twitter and at our website: as well as by using the following hashtags: #Gothflix #StreamingTheGothic.

*We are asking papers be solely focused on texts marketed as Netflix Originals within the UK (any text produced by Netflix, such as Orange is the New Black, or exclusively first distributed in the UK by Netflix, such as Riverdale) and a full list is available on our website. If you have any questions, please email us. If you want to focus on a none UK Netflix Original, we would ask that the paper has a strong focus on what the Netflix platform brings to the text.

Journal of Dracula Studies Special Issue: Witches

deadline for submissions:
January 1, 2020

full name / name of organization:
Anne DeLong/Transylvanian Society of Dracula

contact email:

The Journal of Dracula Studies is accepting submissions of manuscripts of scholarly articles (4000-6000 words) for a 2020 Special Issue focusing on witches and witchcraft. Papers may examine the figure of the witch and/or the practice of witchcraft in literature, film, folklore, and popular culture. Submissions are due by January 1, 2020. Possible topics include the following:

witches, wizards, warlocks, cunning folk

magic and magical practices

hexing and spell casting

witches throughout history

witch hunts and witch trials

witchcraft and feminism

witchcraft and New Age spirituality

witchcraft and political activism

witchcraft and spiritualism: seances, spirit communication

culturally diverse witchcraft practices: Voodoo, conjure, pow wow, etc.

depictions of witches and witchcraft in film, television, and popular culture

An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact: The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Date and Time: December 12, 2019, 9:00AM-6:00PM

Location: New York City College of Technology, 285 Jay St., A105, Brooklyn, NY

Almost 90 years ago, Analog Science Fiction and Fact began its storied history as one of the most important and influential SF magazines with the publication of its first issue under the title Astounding Stories of Super-Science. During that time, its fabled editors, award-winning writers, recognized artists, and invested readers played roles in the development of one of the longest running and renowned SF magazines, which in turn, influenced the field and adapted to change itself.

The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium will celebrate “An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact.” It will feature talks, readings, and discussion panels with Analog Science Fiction and Fact’s current and past editors and writers, and paper presentations and discussion panels about its extensive history, its relationship to the SF genre, its connection to fandom, and its role within the larger SF publishing industry.

We invite proposals for 15-20 minute paper presentations that explore or strongly relate to Analog Science Fiction and Fact. Please send a 250-word abstract with title, brief professional bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis ( by September 30, 2019. Topics with a connection to Analog Science Fiction and Fact might include but are certainly not limited to:

• Histories of the magazine’s editors, writers, and relationship to other SF magazines.
• Relationship of the magazine to the ongoing development of the SF genre.
• Tropes, themes, and concepts in the magazine.
• Issues of identity (culture, ethnicity, race, sex, and gender) in the magazine.
• Writers of color in the magazine.
• Women writers in the magazine.
• Fandom and the magazine.
• Visual studies of cover and interior artwork.
• Hard SF and the magazine.
• Interdisciplinary approaches to studying the magazine.
• STEM and the Humanities bridged in the magazine.
• Pedagogical approaches to teaching SF and/or STEM with the magazine.

This event is free and open to the public as space permits: an RSVP will be included with the program when announced on the Science Fiction at City Tech website (

This symposium is held in partnership with Analog Science Fiction and Fact and its publisher Penny Publications. It is hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

The Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction is held in celebration of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, an archival holding of over 600-linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and scholarship. It is in the Archives and Special Collections of the Ursula C. Schwerin Library (Library Building, L543C, New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201). More information about the collection and how to access it is available here:

Conference, University of Southern Denmark, May 28–29, 2020

Utopia & Dystopia

Conference on the Fantastic in Media Entertainment

Venue: University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark Proposal Deadline: December 10, 2019

Call for Presentations

Today, genres of the fantastic reign supreme in all media entertainment – film, television, games, toys, theme parks, haunted houses. We are surrounded by superheroes, fantastic beasts, and battles in dystopian futures. Intriguingly, the more secularized societies become, the more infatuated we are with the fantastic. In terms of revenue and fan interest, fantastic genres are the most popular the world over. The Shape of Water (2017), an adult fairy tale, won four Oscars. The Star Wars trilogy (2015–), Wonder Woman (2017), and Captain Marvel (2019) feature female protagonists, a recent development. Black Panther (2017) featured an African-American protagonist. And shows like The Walking Dead (2011–) and Game of Thrones (2011–2019) have made adult fantastic television the new black. The fantastic, once considered for children, has become respected for its ability to break existing limits and imagine the impossible and the unknown.

This conference invites new research in the fantastic. Why is the fantastic more popular than ever? What theories – or bundle of theories – capture the specific nature of the fantastic? What purposes do fantastic genres serve in terms of evolution, adaptation, sensory pleasures, and cognitive as well as social uses? How do we create fantastic stories across media platforms and in different aesthetic forms? How is worldbuilding used to create transmedia stories of the fantastic? How do new technologies and media aesthetics affect the fantastic in terms of production, distribution, and fan uses?

The conference welcomes multiple theoretical approaches and perspectives. The aim is to understand the use, function, and role of the fantastic today; to engage with its various expressions across media; and to ask what powers and appeal all its genres hold, from fantasy and fairy tales to science fiction and supernatural horror. We believe the fantastic is especially suited to ask questions about human existence, pressing questions in times of today’s ecological crisis, and with this call we want to ask those questions.

Greek phantastikos means producing mental images, and the OED defines fantastic as “existing only in imagination . . . fabulous, imaginary, unreal.” But the fantastic has been defined multiple ways. A broad definition sees it a supergenre with subgenres that break with the laws of nature: sci- fi, fantasy, fairy tale, supernatural horror, and superheroes. A narrow definition targets singular elements, for example a reader’s hesitation between a natural or a supernatural explanation of events (Todorov). We use a broad definition of the fantastic and welcome paper proposals on all subgenres of the fantastic and its expressions in practice, film, tv, games, digital media, theme parks, haunted houses, fan studies, and more.

Suggested Themes

• Play and the fantastic
• Cognitive and evolutionary approaches to the fantastic
• The fantastic as live entertainment (haunted attractions such as haunted houses, escape
rooms, zombie runs)
• Genre mashup and new mixing
• The precariat in the fantastic
• Women in the fantastic
• Indigenous fantastic
• Transnational and global fantastic
• Fantastic beasts – imaginary animals in the fantastic
• Auteurs in the fantastic
• Fan tourism and the fantastic
• Designing and creating fantastic spaces
• Subgenres of the fantastic – all subgenres are welcome

Keynotes Speakers – More Keynote Speakers to be Announced

Professor Cristina Bacchilega, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Professor Angela Ndalianis, Swinburne University of Technology

We invite submissions of research papers of 20 minutes as well as pre–constituted panels of three or four people. Proposals of 300 words and 150 word bio should be sent to Rikke Schubart, by December 10, 2019, as should any queries.

Conference Steering Committee

Ass. Prof. Rikke Schubart, University of Southern Denmark,
Ass. Prof. Anita Nell Bech Albertsen, University of Southern Denmark,
Ass. Prof. Rune Graulund, University of Southern Denmark,
Professor Cristina Bacchilega, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Professor Angela Ndalianis, Swinburne University of Technology,

The conference is arranged by the Institute for the Study of Culture, SDU, and Danish IRFD research network Imagining the impossible: The Fantastic as Media Entertainment and Play

“In this world only play, play as artists and children engage in it, exhibits coming-to-be and passing away, structuring and destroying, without any moral additive, in forever equal innocence. And as children and artists play, so plays the ever-living fire.”
Friedrich Nietzsche (1873)

Panel Call for ICFA 2020: Expanding the Archive

In 2019, the fanfiction site Archive of Our Own (AO3) was nominated for a Hugo award. This repository of nearly 5 million original works, representing over 30 thousand fandoms, stands out in the world of Science Fiction and Fantasy awards not only because of the sheer number of authors it represents, but also because it is the first nomination for unpublished fanfiction and many of the authors are young women. This nomination draws attention to what is “archived” and, by extension, what is valued. AO3’s nomination is not the year’s only example of the expanding canon of Speculative Fiction. The documentary film Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror, produced by Tananarive Due, directed by Xavier Burgin, and based on Dr. Robin R. Means Coleman’s book Horror Noire: Blacks in American Horror Films from the 1890s to Present (2011), begins with the assertion that “black history is black horror” and tracks how the genre can engage with questions of race and power. Similarly, Dr. Ebony Thomas’s The Dark Fantastic considers Black female characters Bonnie Bennett (CW’s The Vampire Diaries), Rue (The Hunger Games), Gwen (Merlin), and Angelina Johnson (Harry Potter), and explores how these characters mirror racist violence in the real world. Each of these examples makes a case for expanding the idea of the canon (and what we value enough to archive) to include different types of characters and voices.

In terms of physical archives, a recent open letter on the Reading While White blog called out the lack of context and white-washing of the University of Minnesota’s Children’s Literature Research Collection’s exhibit and corresponding book The ABC of It: Why Children’s Books Matter, demonstrating that even professional archives are not neutral—especially once their materials are extracted and exhibited for public consumption. In the wake of this controversy, curators of archives, whether in libraries, classrooms, or their own scholarly work, must address how the materials presented and their surrounding context represent choices that speak to the curator’s values and priorities.

When archives hold the power to exclude and include, to value and affirm both people and genre, then how do we as scholars decide what belongs and how do we think through the consequences of those choices for ourselves, our students, and our field? We encourage submissions that answer these questions and otherwise critically examine the speculative fiction archive, broadly defined.

Submissions may consider but are not limited to the following topics in relation to archives:

The worth/value estimation of collecting
Teaching courses in the archives
Archival pedagogy- constructing the archives for our courses/ asking students to construct their own archives
Controversies and canon
Digital collections
Internet as archive
Fan spaces
Race and representation
Award winners as archive

Please submit a 300-500 word abstract and preliminary bibliography to Emily Midkiff ( or Sara Austin ( by Oct 11, 2019. Abstracts will also be considered for a special issue of the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, for which we will be issuing a CFP in November.

Bookmark the Google Doc version of this call to keep on top of any updates: