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Category Archives: CFP

Volume 31 Climate Fiction

Call for Papers (anticipated publication date: December, 2019/January, 2020)

Editor: Paweł Frelik (University of Warsaw) & Alison Sperling (Institute for Cultural Inquiry, Berlin)

Dan Bloom may have been the first to coin the much-debated moniker “cli-fi” back in 2007, but, as Susanne Leikam and Julia Leyda suggest in the special section of Amerikastudien, other terms have been used and include “climate fiction, petrofiction, Anthropofiction, ecofiction, or more particular concepts such as ecodrama, risk novel, and Anthropocenema,” all of which remain “entangled with specific long-standing cultural and critical traditions, ideological frameworks, socio-political and economic strategies, and affective motives.”

As a hyperobject (Morton 2013), climate resists representation and narrativization, but a spectrum of texts that approach and problematize it is both broad and rich. In the literary medium, some of these attempts have been marketed as science fiction (Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl [2009] comes to mind) while others circulate as cli-fi (Marcel Theroux’s Far North [2009] is a good example). Creative non-fiction has flourished, including Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History (2014) and Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate (2014). The media of film and television have figured equally prominently with the new cinema of disaster and post-apocalyptic series.

A number of excellent publishing projects have already investigated various vistas of climate, including Kristi McKim’s Cinema as Weather (2013) and Janine Randerson’s Weather as Medium (2018) as well as the recent special issues of Science Fiction Studies and Studies in the Novel. This issue of Paradoxa aims to build on these efforts but also expand the critical conversation. While we are interested in both in-depth analyses of individual texts and more general, theoretical discussions, we also seek to explode and slipstream the very term “climate fiction.” The term has been one used most often to date but, treating genre labels as practices rather than objects, we wish to invite new perspectives on thinking how our cultural production can engage the hyperobject in question.

The texts, bodies of texts, and media of interest include but are not limited to:

science fiction and fantasy foregrounding climate both terrestrial and extraterrestrial
non-genre and slipstream science fiction
non-fantastic climate fiction
narrowly and broadly understood cli-fi
climate cinema, climate television, climate comics, and climate video games
narratives of catastrophic and violent weather
indigenous climate fictions
non-Anglophone texts
texts originating in the Global South

Specific themes and tropes include but are not limited to:

atmospheric conditions and crises
climate change and climate crisis
climate justice and injustice
human and inhuman timescales and perspectives
hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and earthquakes
change of climate and terraforming
climate and non-human agencies and perspectives

Possible approaches to such texts include but are not limited to:

economic and political contexts
aesthetic and formal aspects of representing climate
speculative realism

We are particularly interested in texts or bodies of texts that have received little critical attention thus far.

Abstracts of up to 500 words should be submitted by 15 June 2019 to the editors and Authors of selected abstracts will be notified by 30 June 2019. Full drafts (5,000 to 7,000 words) will be due by 30 September 2019. Publication of the issue is provisionally scheduled for December 2019/January 2020.

CFP (edited collection): Fantasy and Myth in the Anthropocene | Brian Attebery, Tereza Dědinová and Marek Oziewicz (Eds.)

“Fantasy’s main claim to cultural importance resides, I believe, in the work of redefining the relationship between contemporary readers and mythic texts. … [If we take] myth … to designate any collective story that encapsulates a world view and authorizes belief, … fantasy offers a glimpse into the process by which mythic patterns transmit cognitive structures even without the sanction of official belief. … Fantasy’s enduring appeal is [its] capacity for mythopoiesis: the making of narratives that reshape the world.”
(Brian Attebery, Stories about Stories: Fantasy and the Remaking of Myth)

“The Anthropocene is a belief that humanity has already changed the living world beyond repair … [and that] the destiny of the planet is to be completely overtaken and ruled by humanity. … Like most mistaken philosophies, the Anthropocene worldview is largely a product of well-intentioned ignorance.”
(Edward O. Wilson, Half-Earth: Our Planet’s Fight for Life)

In October 2018, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a special report stating that unless “unprecedented,” “rapid and far-reaching” changes are made, our planet will find itself spiraling into irreversible and catastrophic climate change. Technological and political challenges aside, the reversal of the current ecocidal trajectory requires a radical transformation of how we imagine ourselves in relation to the biosphere. One key space where this work of collective dreaming occurs is myth, fantasy and other genres of speculative fiction. Fantasy and myth have been used to explore the notions of heroism, identity, and power; raise questions about the meaning and purpose of life; express social criticism and speculate about the unseen. But what do these questions mean at a time when human activity has altered the planet in game-changing ways?

The aim of this collection is to explore the new challenges and opportunities for fantasy and myth that arose out of highly contested debates over climate change, pollution, vanishing habitats, extinctions, mass pauperization and migrations, and other effects of the Anthropocene. What does fantastic literature have to say about the human-caused changes of the Anthropocene? Do myths about a lost Eden justify the destruction of habitats and species or do they encourage us to change the way we live? What makes fantasy and myth relevant in the Anthropocene? How exactly can they function as vehicles for hopeful dreaming that steers clear of naïvete and helps us imagine alternatives to the Capitalocene’s vision of petrochemical Ragnarok? Can myth and fantasy point a way to restoring the connection with the natural rather than the supernatural? Can they articulate a vision of non-anthropocentric life, in which humans are part of rather than rulers of the biosphere?

Fantasy and Myth in the Anthropocene seeks original contributions dealing with any sort of interaction between fantastic or mythopoeic fictions and the realities of climate change, megacities, the carbon economy and the other alterations we have made to the environment. While we recognize the contribution of dystopia and science fiction to this debate, this collection aims to offer a sustained reflection upon the nexus of fantasy, myth, and the Anthropocene. We encourage contributors to draw upon a range of theoretical approaches and cultural positions: Indigenous futurism, Donna Haraway’s Chthulucene, solarpunk, energy humanities, human-animal studies, posthumanism, ecocriticism, evocriticism, and whatever else offers insight into the present age and the stories we tell about it. We welcome proposals that examine graphic novels, picturebooks, short stories, novels, films, narrative games and apps, and other mixed-media formats. We are particularly interested in contributions that engage with works for the young audiences, Indigenous futures, minority and postcolonial fantasy, recent and under-discussed works, including international and global narratives, and works originally published in languages other than English—as well as how these diverse works stimulate conversations about the Anthropocene with young people. We seek chapters on how exactly myth and fantasy accept, ignore, or interrogate the Anthropocene’s key issues and assumptions. Whose visions of change do they articulate or exclude? Ultimately, can fantasy and myth help us rethink what it means to be human at the time Amitav Gosh has dubbed “The Great Derangement”?

This collection is intended for publication with a major academic publisher in the US or Europe.

• Submission deadline for abstracts (max 350 words, incl. title and 5 keywords), accompanied by the author’s CV: August 31, 2019
• Authors notified of preliminary acceptance: September 30, 2019
• Publisher identified and preliminary contract finalized: fall 2019
• Submission deadline for chapters (about 5000 to 6000 words, max. word length and documentation style pending publisher’s requirements): June 15, 2020
• Peer review completed. Revision suggestions sent to authors: September 30, 2020
• Revised chapter drafts submitted for final editorial review: November 15, 2020
• Final manuscript submitted for copy-editing by the publisher: early spring 2021

If you have any questions, please contact the co-editors at

Literary Monsters

deadline for submissions:
May 20, 2019

full name / name of organization:
Speculative Fiction Association

contact email:

In today’s culture, it’s almost impossible to avoid “monsters.” Straight from mythology and legend, these fantastic creatures traipse across our television screens and the pages of our books. Over centuries and across cultures, the inhuman have represented numerous cultural fears and, in more recent times, desires. They are Other. They are Us. This panel will explore the literal monsters–whether they be mythological, extraterrestrial, or man-made–that populate fiction and film, delving into the cultural, psychological and/or theoretical implications.

Please submit a 250-300 word abstract, a brief bio, and any A/V needs by May 20, 2019 to Dr. Lisa Bro at

SAMLA will be held at the Westin Peachtree Plaza Atlanta, Georgia this year from November 8-10. Those accepted must be members of SAMLA to present.

The Age of the Pulps: the SF magazine, 1926–1960

DEADLINE EXTENDED to June 15, 2019

Contact—: Thomas Connolly (

The genre of science fiction was “born” in April 1926, when Hugo Gernsback published the first issue of Amazing Stories. Of course, stories of technological speculation and scientific fantasy were to be found long before the brightly coloured pages of the pulp magazines—yet Amazing Stories is credited with providing early SF with its first dedicated publication venue. The subsequent decades were a remarkably fertile period in the history of Anglophone SF—from Gernsback’s single SF magazine, the field grew to include nearly 20 others by 1939, and the subsequent “Golded Age” saw the arrival of the most familiar names of twentieth-century SF into the field.

The pulp magazines therefore occupy a central place in the history of Anglophone SF—as Mike Ashley has argued, “it remains a truism that no country has developed its own body of science fiction writers without having a regular SF magazine and the majority of the leading SF writers throughout the world learned their craft through the SF magazine”. It is here that SF consolidated into an established and self-reflexive genre, and here too that we find the beginnings of the SF “mega-text”—the body of common meanings, references and tropes shared, as Damian Broderick has argued, between SF works. Although the literary quality of the pulp SF stories is often questionable, these stories nevertheless respond in dynamic and complex ways to the social and political conditions of interwar America. As John Cheng notes, the writers of pulp SF “genuinely believed that science held imaginative potential and progressive purpose”. At the same time, the growth of fandom—fan clubs, letter sections, conventions—blurred the lines between producers and consumers of SF, and the age of the pulps comprised a period of fertile crossover between readers, authors, and editors.

We are seeking proposals for articles exploring any aspect of pulp SF from Gernsback’s initial magazine up to the waning of American magazine SF in the late 1950s. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

• Female and POC writers in the SF pulps
• Capitalist modernity, globalisation and the experience of space and time
• Technocracy, technological imperialism and “super-science”
• Space opera, aliens and imperialism
• The publishing milieu and commercial practices of the early pulps
• Non-narrative content in pulp SF magazines—advertisements, editorials, fan letters
• The “Golden Age” and the Second World War
• The crossover between American pulp writers and writers from other countries
• The relationship between SF and other pulp genres (detective fiction, westerns, romance fiction, etc.)
• Fandom and the interactions between readers, writers and editors
• Genre formation and the growth of the SF “mega-text” in the pulps
• Examinations of specific magazine titles or pulp SF authors
• The relationship between pulp SF and other SF venues (the paperback, Hollywood cinema, television, etc.)
• The SF pulps as popular fiction, and the tension between “high” and “low” art

Although the primary focus of this collection is intended to be the American pulp SF scene between 1926 and 1960, submissions that examine pulp SF alongside other magazine traditions (e.g., non-Anglophone magazine SF, the British magazine tradition) will also be considered.

Submission—: Please submit abstracts of 400 words (alongside a brief bio) to by 1 June 2019. Informal queries are welcome. Finalised articles expected by 15 November 2019.

Productive Futures: The Political Economy of Science Fiction

Bloomsbury, London, 12-14 September 2019

Guest authors: Aliette de Bodard, Zen Cho, Tade Thompson
Keynote speakers: Dr Caroline Edwards, Dr Joan Haran

The history of science fiction (SF) is a history of unreal economics: from asteroid mining to interstellar trade, from the sex-work of replicants to the domestic labour of the housewives of galactic suburbia, from the abolition of money and property to techno-capitalist tragedies of the near future.

LSFRC invites abstracts of 300 words, plus 50 word bios, addressing economic themes in SF, and/or exploring how SF can help to widen and evolve our sense of the economic. We encourage submissions from collaborators across disciplines and/or institutions. Please submit to by 31st May 2019.

For the full length call for papers, and more information, please visit…/call-for-papers-productive-futures/ or email We have a page:

Facebook: London Science Fiction Research Community
Twitter: @LSFRC_

Call for Chapters: Reclaiming the Tomboy: Posthumanism, Gender Representation, and Intersectionality

deadline for submissions:
July 31, 2019

full name / name of organization:
Dr. Jen Harrison / East Stroudsburg University; Dr. Holly Wells / East Stroudsburg University; Dr. Erica Joan Dymond / East Stroudsburg University

contact email:

We are currently seeking chapter submissions for an edited volume exploring the evolution of the tomboy figure from classic literature through to modern popular culture, through the lens of posthumanist theory. As recent critics have discussed, the figure of the tomboy is complex and multifaceted, represented across many different modes and employing a vast array of different narrative, visual, and rhetorical styles and techniques. Over time, tomboy figures have illustrated a shift in the conceptualization of gender, sexuality, race, and other identity politics and philosophies. In their unashamed breaching of identity borders and boundaries, these figures are the ideal locus for exploration of the way in which posthumanism itself represents an evolution in identity and rights philosophies.

This volume invites cutting-edge literary and cultural studies scholarship, with a particular focus on representation and intersectionality as they are illuminated by posthumanist theory. Submissions of an interdisciplinary nature (humanities and other disciplines) are particularly welcome. Some potential areas of exploration might include (but are not limited to):

Historical representations of the tomboy
The tomboy in news and media representations
The tomboy in education
The tomboy in the professional world
Material culture and artefacts pertaining to tomboys
Bodies and identitywithin tomboy culture
Postcolonial and ecocritical readings of tomboy representations
Tomboys and the criminal justice system
Violence and the tomboy
Physical/mental health and the tomboy
Tomboys in music, film, gaming, and television

However, this list is nowhere near exhaustive and we are happy to consider any submission which focuses on tomboys and posthumanism.

We hope to include chapters by authors from a variety of disciplines and viewpoints, reflecting the interdisciplinary nature of current studies in posthumanism and intersectionality, as well as the diversification of popular culture. Please submit a 500-word chapter abstract and a biography of no more than 250 words by July 31, 2019, to

All proposed abstracts will be given full consideration, and submission implies a commitment to publish in this volume if your work is selected for inclusion. If selected, completed chapters will be due by December 31, 2019.

The volume is intended for publication with Lexington Books, who have formally expressed interest in the project; we anticipate a final completion date of September 1, 2021

All questions regarding this volume should be directed to the editors at

We look forward to what we hope will be a stimulating and exciting array of submissions on this fascinating topic!

Call for Papers: Edited Collection Fan Studies: Methods, Ethics, Research

deadline for submissions:
May 3, 2019

full name / name of organization:
Paul Booth/Rebecca Williams

contact email:

Despite the increasing visibility of fan studies as a discipline, there remains scant work that turns its focus specifically to methodological issues. This relative neglect may be due to its status as a somewhat unruly or ‘undisciplined discipline’ (Ford 2014), which takes its theoretical cues from others including sociology, media and cultural studies, psychology, and literary studies. However, as its presence begins to grow and more scholars discover the work being undertaken, it is timely and appropriate for those working within the field to turn their attention more decisively to issues of methods.

We are therefore developing the edited collection Fan Studies: Methods, Ethics, Research for the Fandom and Culture series at the University of Iowa Press as the first fan studies primer for classroom use that focuses not on the history of the field, but on the distinctive methodologies, discipline-specific ethical questions, and research foci of fan studies. To this end, and because fan studies is both “fast-moving” (Hellekson 2018) and “multi-disciplinary (Turk 2018), we are hoping for an immensely varied collection that doesn’t posit just one avenue for fan studies research, but rather unveils a diverse bounty of approaches that overlap, contradict, complement, and complicate each other.

As fan studies grows, it is important to reflect the vast array of perspectives that make up the field. In this collection, we are thus aiming for a variety of topics. Each chapter of 6000 words (inclusive of bibliography) should include a specific methodological approach to a particular type of fan studies research, filtered through the applied interest of the researcher. (That is, we are not looking for theoretical “This is what digital ethnography is” but rather case study-focused “this is how I used digital ethnography to research Doctor Who”). Each chapter should be written in an accessible style (intended for advanced classroom use) and should include both methodological explanations and personal research findings. In addition, we are particularly interested in chapters that make connections between methodology, ethics, and research as they relate to a particular type of fan studies work.

The collection has already secured chapters on a wide range of methodological approaches and topics, but we are still seeking to commission chapters in the following areas:

Research on Fan Social Activism
Content Analysis
Platform Studies
Discourse Analysis
Policy/legal research
Research Across the Life Course

Please do contact us if you have any queries.

If you are interested in contributing to the collection, please send a 300 word abstract, along with a short author biography to Paul Booth ( and Rebecca Williams ( by Friday 3rd May 2019.

Call for Travel to Collections Proposals

Department of Special and Area Studies Collections

University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries

Travel grants up to $2,500 are available to undertake research between August 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020 with UF’s Special and Area Studies Collections. Proposals are due Friday, May 17, 2019 with award notifications expected the week of June 17, 2019.

Judging criteria include prioritization for interdisciplinary research / use of more than one collection and a feasible, tangible publication outcome (e.g., an article, dissertation or book chapter). Awardees must travel 100 miles or farther to be eligible.

In addition to grants for use of any collection, proposals on the following topics will dedicated funding:

Jewish culture, life, religion in Florida, Latin America, and/or the Caribbean
African American experience and history
Constitutional law, and women and people of color in the legal profession
The American era of the Panama Canal, the Panama Canal Zone and Panama Canal Museum materials
History of science, biomedicine and the humanities, and intellectual property

Please direct submissions to Suzan Alteri. These must include:

Title and description of proposed project (approx. 500 words), including identification of relevant materials for consultation
Budget estimate for travel, lodging and other expenses including:
Transportation costs to and from Gainesville
Housing costs for a maximum of two weeks
Statement affirming applicant’s commitment to submit a report at the end of the residency, including permission to use the report for promotions
CV or résumé
Name, postal address, telephone number, and a valid email address

Awardees must use our collections onsite and submit a report (approx. 500 words) describing the research visit by June 30, 2020. Distribution of award occurs after submission of report and payment paperwork. Dates of research should be coordinated with appropriate curators.

Please note that researchers from outside the US who stay 10 days or longer will be required to apply for a J-1 Visa.

QUESTIONS? If you have questions about the suitability of your proposal or need information on any aspect of the program, please contact Suzan Alteri by email

CFP: Finncon 2019 Academic Track
Jyväskylä July 5–7, 2019

AI Meets Tolkien: Non-Human Minds in Speculative Fiction

The organization committee of Finncon and the Finnish Society for
Science Fiction and Fantasy Research (Finfar) are happy to announce that
Finncon 2019 will once again feature an academic programming track! As
in previous years, the track is intended as multilingual and
interdisciplinary, and it will be free of charge and open to everyone
interested in the research of speculative fiction. The aim of the track
is to employ various academic frameworks and approaches in order to
examine the themes and issues discussed in science fiction, fantasy,
horror, and other genres of speculative fiction.

As per usual, the academic track aims to follow the overall themes of
Finncon, which means that this year’s programming will center on
artificial intelligence on the one hand, and J.R.R. Tolkien on the other
hand. AI has slowly but surely crept from the novels, TV screens and
geeky daydreams to our everyday lives. In other words, the theme now
covers everything from familiar smartphones and search engines to
dystopic Skynets and machine uprisings. It is not only AI sci-fi that
probes the threats and possibilities of non-human intelligence, however.
J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic works also depict creatures that are as
conscious of themselves as humans, but differ from us in various other
ways. Indeed, where thinking machines are a central topic in science
fiction, fantasy and horror have investigated multifarious other kinds
of non-human minds, such as the minds of fairies, orcs, and monsters.

The Academic Track of Finncon 2019 thereby welcomes 20-minute oral
presentations whose topics could include but are not limited to:
– Artificial life
– The relationships between the humankind and intelligent technology
– Non-human creatures and their conscious or non-conscious activities
– The relations between human and non-human characters and societies
– Depiction or narration of minds and intelligences in speculative
– Cognition and speculation

Although literature has traditionally been considered the cradle of
speculative fiction, the presentations can also discuss works from other
media, including comics, digital games, films and TV shows. You are
welcome to give your presentation in Finnish, English or Swedish.

If you would like to participate in the academic programming and
introduce your research to the wide, enthusiastic audiences of Finncon,
please send a 300-word abstract and a short bio to by April 30, 2019. Pdf- and .docx files are
both accepted. Presenters chosen for the academic track will be
contacted personally in late spring or early summer.

The Finnish Society for Science Fiction and Fantasy Research is also
planning other informal activities for Finncon, which all presenters are
welcome to join. Furthermore, before the main event, Finfar will
organize a traditional paper workshop at the University of Jyväskylä.
Everyone interested in speculative fiction research, especially students
working on their MA theses or doctoral dissertations, are invited to
send in short works-in-process papers to be discussed in the workshop.
Further details will be announced at a later date.

For more information on Finncon events and Finfar’s activities, please
consult the websites:

On behalf of Finfar:

Sanna Tapionkaski, FT / PhD
Yliopistonlehtori, Kieli- ja viestintätieteiden laitos, Jyväskylän yliopisto
Senior Lecturer, Department of Language and Communication Studies,
University of Jyväskylä


Volume 32 Comics and/or Graphic Novels

Call for Papers (anticipated publication date: December, 2020)

Editor: Vittorio Frigerio (Dalhousie University)/

This issue of Paradoxa will explore comics and/or graphic novels.

American histories of comics have traditionally highlighted what they deem the indisputable U.S. birthplace of this mass-culture phenomenon, pointing to Richard F. Outcault’s Yellow Kid (1895) as the first comic ever produced. Alternately, the European view tends to favor the creation of this ever-popular medium by Swiss author Rodolphe Töppfer, with his Les Amours de monsieur Vieux Bois (1827 – first published in 1837) and highlights the importance of early works such as German author Wilhelm Bush’s Max und Moritz (1865).

A similar, apparently irreducible dichotomy has appeared concerning the origin of the “graphic novel.” American critics consider Will Eisner’s A Contract with God(1978) as the first graphic novel ever produced, while European historians point to Hugo Pratt’s La Ballata del mare salato (1967 – although its influence is said to be felt primarily after its translation into French in 1975). And it is not unusual to see credit for the origin of the graphic novel given to the Argentinian El Eternauta, by Héctor Germán Oesterheld and Francisco Solano López (1957).

Apart from matters of national pride and predominance, these divergent views are also due to unresolved questions regarding the meaning of the terms involved. Töppfer’s books would not qualify as a comic if one were to consider the genre as primarily defined by the use of the speech balloon. But then neither would such seminal works as Alex Raymond’s Flash Gordon or Hal Foster’s Prince Valiant. In the Franco-Belgian domain, debates have also excluded such historically significant works as Joseph Pinchon’s Bécassine or Louis Forton’s Les Pieds nickelés. In the Italian tradition, practically all pre-Second World War productions, such as Sergio Tofano’s Signor Bonaventura or Antonio Rubino’s Quadratino would automatically be excluded.

The final definition of “graphic novel” remains open to debate, as any customer of a major North American booksellers’ chain knows full well. Major commercial publishers recycle “classic” comic book fare under the new label and present it beside recent, more “literary” productions issued by niche or alternative publishers. Indeed, we can easily go from all-encompassing definitions such as offered by Stephen Weiner…

“Graphic novels, as we shall define them for this project, are book-length comic books that are meant to be read as one story. This broad term includes collections of stories in genres such as mystery, superhero, or supernatural, that are meant to be apart from their corresponding ongoing comic book storyline; heart-rending works such as Art Spiegelman’s Maus; and non-fiction pieces such as Joe Sacco’s journalistic work, Palestine.” (Stephen Weiner, Faster Than a Speeding Bullet: The Rise of the Graphic Novel. Introduction by Will Eisner. NBM Publishing, 2012.)

… to much more restrictive and specific ones, like that proposed by Thierry Groensteen…

“[T]he comics medium has matured, […]. Its standing has greatly improved, to the extent that it is now regarded as a form of literature in its own right. It has diversified by moving into new areas (history, personal life, science, philosophy, sometimes poetry) and by taking on new forms (diary, reportage, essay).” (Thierry Groensteen. The Expanding Art of Comics. Ten Modern Masterpieces. Translated by Ann Miller. University Press of Mississippi, Jackson, 2017, p. 3.)

Such appraisals also seem to vary according to the national origin of the critic, with North American criticism generally more willing to include mass cultural products within the field of the graphic novel, while European critics highlight notions of “maturity” and generic evolution that reserve the label for productions outside of, or in the margins of the commercial mainstream. Comics, bandes dessinées, fumetti, tebeos, manga—as they are known with important variations in different cultural contexts—and their critical reception, thus appear to differ significantly depending on their national histories and cultural preferences, and are only superficially identical.

On the other hand, comic book characters, their authors, and their publications have crossed national and linguistic boundaries to an extent rarely seen in the world of literary fiction. Any account of the Franco-Belgian “bande dessinée” would be incomplete without acknowledging the impact of Golden Age American comics, either as aesthetic models (George McManus’s influence on Hergé, Caniff’s influence on Jijé and other artists of the realistic school of drawing), or as competitors whose symbolic dominance led to the development of an autochthonous industry. American underground comics and authors of Mad magazine inspired the creators of the French Pilote and encouraged the transformation of the medium so that it appealed to the tastes of an older audience. In return, Franco-Belgian “ligne claire” informed some notable contemporary North American creators (Jeff Smith, Chris Ware…) and even influenced the international art world (Dutch illustrator Joost Swarte).

A constant whirlwind of reciprocal influences has marked the evolution of the comic genre across North America and the major European markets, as well as important markets in Latin America, most notably Argentina. Hugo Pratt, Alberto Ongaro, and Mauro Faustinelli contributed importantly to the development of the genre in that country, while European translations of Argentinian authors such as Alberto Breccia, have helped generate cultural recognition for the new genre of the graphic novel. Not all experiments were equally successful. Moebius (pseudonym of French author Jean Giraud), invited by Stan Lee to draw the famous Silver Surfer, did not meet with unconditional approval in the U.S. Periodic attempts at translating celebrated series such as Tintin and Astérix for an English-speaking public have not been able to duplicate the success of the characters in their respective native countries. The iconic Italian western Tex Willer is a major hit in Brazil, but only one story has appeared in North America, and then only because it was drawn by well-known American artist Joe Kubert.

In recent decades, the increasing critical recognition of comics as a legitimate artistic and literary genre has spawned the creation of several significant international events, such as the Angoulême International Comics Festival (France) and the Lucca Comics and Games convention (Italy), helping to further break down barriers and to bring national traditions into ever closer contact, while at the same time favoring the representation of comics as specific national products deserving of state sponsorship and protection granted through agencies such as the “Centre belge de la bande dessinée” in Belgium or the “Cité international de la bande dessinée et de l’image” in France.

What can a transnational analysis of the development of comics and graphic novels teach us about the nature of the genre? Do the exchanges and circulations (of authors, characters, styles, subjects, publishing formats…) between national traditions allow for a rewriting of the evolution of graphic narratives, outside of nation-based or linguistic models? What do these migrations tell us about any immutable or invariable properties potentially common to graphic narratives, independently of their chronological and geographical positioning, their intended audiences or their degree of cultural recognition? How and to what extent can the historiography of comics and graphic novels benefit from adopting a global approach to the subject?

This issue of Paradoxa will explore comics and/or graphic novels. Among the possible approaches are:

• comics in their relation to their national identity whether in specific works or in series, as related to the publishing industry and its functioning, or to the career of individual authors, from the beginning of the genre to the present time;
• the importance of foreign influences on the evolution of national comics traditions; the success, or lack thereof, of comics characters in different countries;
• differences and similarities between national markets and readerships;
• governmental support and promotion of comic art;
• the transnational evolution of comics magazines;
• comics in a globalized world;
• the graphic novel as a global phenomenon; comics and graphic novels–natural evolution from one into the other, or competing genres?

We are interested in proposals from all disciplines and theoretical perspectives. Comparative studies which take into consideration more than one national tradition are preferred.

500-word abstracts of article proposals or questions regarding this project should be sent to by September 1, 2019.