Books and special issues of journals – Deadlines April-June 2019

“All We Are Is Eyes”: The Literary Art of Ali Smith
Authors are invited to contribute to an edited volume
Deadliine for proposals: 14 April 2019

Authors are invited to submit papers for a volume exploring the literary output of Ali Smith. Papers may explore any aspect of Smith’s work, but suggested areas include gender, sexuality, nationality and the relationship between literature and the visual arts. Papers should be between 4,000-7,000 words, preceded by a 200 word abstract and formatted using the MLA system. The deadline for abstracts is 14th April 2019.

Any queries regarding submissions should be sent to:


(posted 5 February 2019)

Postclassical Narratology: Twenty Years Later
An issue of Word and Text – A Journal of Literary Studies and Linguistics, IX (2019)
Deadline for proposals: 30 April 2019

Guest Editors: Biwu Shang, Arleen Ionescu and Laurent Milesi

As a term, ‘postclassical narratology’ was proposed by David Herman in his ground-breaking article ‘Scripts, Sequences, and Stories: Elements of a Postclassical Narratology’ (1997) and widely popularized in his edited volume Narratologies: New Perspectives on Narrative Analysis (1999). The last two decades witnessed an explosive interest in narrative studies, which to a large extent could be categorized as the various strands of postclassical narratology. Although in Herman’s view postclassical narratology does contain classical moments, it does not simply mean that the term, in the very literal sense, periodizes narratology into classical vs. postclassical phases. Instead, it refers to those newly-developed approaches beyond structuralism and to new narrative phenomena in the spectrum of analysis.

The boom and rapid development of postclassical narratology is evidenced in an unaccountable number of works produced in the past years; to name a few: James Phelan and Peter J. Rabinowitz’s A Companion to Narrative Theory (2005), Jan Alber and Monika Fludernik’s Postclassical Narratology: Approaches and Analysis (2010), David Herman et al.’s Narrative Theory: Core Concepts and Critical Debates (2012), Biwu Shang’s Contemporary Western Narratology: Postclassical Perspectives (2013), Jan Alber and Per Krogh Hansen’s Beyond Classical Narration: Transmedial and Unnatural Challenge (2014), and Zara Dinnen and Robyn Warhol’s The Edinburgh Companion to Contemporary Narrative Theories (2018). However, we should be aware of the fact that along with its unprecedented development, postclassical narratology has also met controversies from various directions. For instance, Brian Richardson (1997) and Meir Sternberg (2011) are doubtful of both the term ‘postclassical narratology’ and the distinction of the classical/postclassical in narrative studies.

As a rejoinder to the thought-provoking and timely initiative of the second phase of postclassical narratology by such scholars as David Herman and Biwu Shang (2010), Jan Alber and Monika Fludernik (2010), and Biwu Shang (2015), this special issue ‘Postclassical Narratology: Twenty Years Later’, in order to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this new orientation in the field of narratology, attempts to examine and assess the development of narrative inquiries in the postclassical context of the last two decades. Suggested topics include but are not limited to:

  • Classical Concepts, Postclassical Perspectives
  • Narrative Theory Today and Tomorrow: Current State and Future Directions
  • Rhetorical Theory of Narrative
  • Feminist Narrative Theory
  • Unnatural Narrative Theory
  • Cognitive Narrative Theory
  • Transmedial Narrative Theory
  • Fictionality, Emotionality, Ideology,

We welcome interdisciplinary approaches, ranging across critical theory, literary and cultural studies, as well as other disciplines in the humanities. Contributors are advised to follow the journal’s submission guidelines and stylesheet available from The deadline for abstract submissions is April 30, 2019. Please send 500-word proposals to the editors of the volume, who will answer any queries you may have. Articles selected for publication must be submitted by June 30, 2019. All submitted articles will be blind-refereed except when invited. Accepted articles will be returned for post-review revisions by July 30, 2019 and will be expected back in their final version by September 30, 2019 at the latest.

Proposals and articles should be sent as attachments to and the three editors of the issue Biwu Shang (, Arleen Ionescu ( and Laurent Milesi (

(posted 25 January 2019)

The Cinema of Kenneth Branagh: Adaptations, Retellings and Reevaluations
A volume edited by Sabine Planka & Feryal Cubukcu
Deadline for abstracts: 31 May 2019

Since Kenneth Branagh impressed audiences in 1989 with his first film, “Henry V”, movie critics, film scholars, Shakespeare scholars, and Shakespeare enthusiasts alike have noticed two qualities about the young director: he holds back very little, and he borrows from other films quite a bit. Certain portions of his films have been defined appropriately as “lavish”, “over the top”, “energetic”, and “sheer bravura”. His numerous engagements with the mainstream would offer rich and varied ground to explore, and would contribute to a deeper understanding of how a star persona functions; but failure to recognise even the least significance of exploring his recent popular work suggests a persistence in obeying traditional cultural hierarchies and marginalising the mainstream as a site of academic focus.

Branagh does not hesitate to make use of the camera angles, textual imagery, ambiguity, pastiche and parody in his movies and adaptations. If all his movies are taken into account, it would seem that despite the fact that film is so often touted as a visual medium, perhaps its’ most powerful ability of affecting and influencing its viewers lies not only in the images it presents, but also in the personalities of life-like characters.

While lots of research has been done on Branagh’s Shakespeare-adaptations our volume wants to consider the other movies Branagh has directed, too. It is obvious that not only Shakespeare and other authors have had influence on him but also other directors as can be seen, for example, in his film “Dead Again” (1991) that is clearly influenced by Alfred Hitchcock. Additionally Branagh’s work, therefore, contains not only Shakespeare adaptations but also adaptations of other literary works from different genres like “Thor” (2011), “Cinderella” (2015) and the upcoming adaptation of the novel for children “Artemis Fowl” (2019). The newly-announced is a second Agatha Christie-adaptation “Death on the Nile” for 2020 – and which has indirectly be announced by the cliffhanger at the end of his first Christie-adaptation “Murder on the Orient Express” (2017) – which expresses Branagh’s extraordinary talent to handle every genre. It goes without saying that Branagh adapted an opera, too: in 2006 he transferred Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” into a World War I-scenario.

Our volume, therefore, intends to focus on Kenneth Branagh primarily as a director. We are seeking for previously unpublished essays that consider the following topics (but are not limited to) from multidisciplinary perspectives to expand the view on Branagh’s oeuvre that can be divided into

(a) Adaptations of Shakespeare (Henry V (1989)/Much Ado About Nothing (1993)/A Midwinter’s Tale (1995)/Hamlet (1996)/Love’s Labour’s Lost (2000)/As You Like It (2006)/Macbeth (2013)) and

(b) Adaptations of other literary works and the connection to different genres (Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994; Gothic Novel)/The Magic Flute (2006; Opera)/Thor (2011; Comics)/Cinderella (2015; Fairy Tale)/Artemis Fowl (announced 2019; Children’s Literature)/Murder on the Orient Express (2017; Crime Novel/Agatha Christie)/Death on the Nile (announced for 2020; Crime Novel/Agatha Christie)).

Suggested topics include, but are by no means limited to the following:

  • influences of Branagh’s education at Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) on his movies
  • influences of and connections to other directors
  • the literary basis of his movies
  • techniques of narration
  • colonial/postcolonial readings
  • ‘spatial turn’/architectural concepts in Branagh’s movies
  • class consciousness
  • social life and the role of the individual
  • gender representations/representations and visualizations of femininity and masculinity
  • visual effects/style
  • visualization of garden/landscape/nature and heritage
  • set design/costume design and (collaboration with) set designers/costume designers
  • use of (classical/modern) music

The timetable for the volume is as follows:

  • The deadline for abstracts: May 31, 2019
  • Feedback: Mid of July 2019 at the latest
  • Submission for articles (completed): October 31, 2019
  • Double peer review process and feedback of final acceptance due to: November 30, 2019
  • Articles sent back to editors: December 31, 2019
  • The publication is planned during spring/summer 2020.

If you are interested in proposing a chapter, please send an email with (1) an abstract of 500 words and (2) a short CV (maximum of 200 words, plus 3 titles of relevant publications) to both Dr. Feryal Cubukcu (Dokuz Eylul University) ( and Dr. Sabine Planka (University of Siegen) (

Your abstract should outline your hypothesis and briefly sketch the theoretical framework(s) within which your chapter will be situated. All submissions will be acknowledged. If you do not receive a confirmation of receipt within 48 hours, you may assume that your email was lost in the depths of cyberspace. In that case, please re-submit. Please note that we will not include previously published essays in the collection.

(posted 4 February 2019)

Left-wing radicalism in the United States: a foreign creed?
A special issue of  Transatlantica, Journal of American Studies
Submission date : 31 May 2019

Red Scares have been a feature of US-American history from the end of the 19th to the middle of the 20th century. The repression of anarchists between 1890 and 1910, the Red Scare of 1919-1920 and witch hunt of the 1940s and 1950s helped develop national tools and strategies of intelligence and surveillance (Goodall, Rios-Borde) ; they took place within contexts when US-American identity was being created (reacting to the massive immigration and the industrialization of capitalism at the end of the 19th century) or reaffirmed (on the international scale after World War One, in opposition to the Soviet Union after 1945) (Gerstle, O’Leary). Anarchism, socialism and communism  were framed as foreign ideologies, by politicians, journalists and academics. « Radicalism » was perceived as belonging to other times and other places, as being in contradiction with the values of triumphant Americanism (liberalism, democracy, upward mobility) or ill-adapted to the American political context (Higham, Bell, Ceplair).

This Transatlantica issue will analyze the way in which the construction of radicalism as foreign to US-American identity was received by radicals themselves, to see how they reacted to the branding of their beliefs as un-American, and how they devised counter-discourses in order to Americanize their ideas, sometimes leading to conflict and contradiction. How can the language of patriotism be combined with a belief in internationalism ? What coalitions, what political alliances can be built while maintaining a revolutionary stance ? How can the class struggle be rooted in a discourse on US-American society without succumbing to the sirens of exceptionalism ?

The hegemony of the « national » in the study of social movements as well as in intellectual history has been largely contested by transnational history (Tyrrell) and a local history seeking to unearth the political and social experimentations born of radical ideas in specific geographical contexts (on socialism in Oklahoma, for instance, see Bissett and Plassart). Our desire to reintroduce the prism of the nation in the study of radicalism, without falling into the trap of naturalizing « the nation », stems from recent scholarly work stressing the importance of analyzing the interplay of scales (local, national, transnational) and the conflicts that might result from this interplay, for instance between internationalism and the necessity to root radical ideas in the « imagined community » (Anderson) of the nation. Are radicalism and national identity necessarily incompatible (Bantman, Turcato) ? And how does this feeling of national belonging play in the political strategies of radical activists ?

Proposals can address these issues from a large disciplinary perspective (history, social history of ideas, historiography). Possible topics include figures of the US-American left embodying the Americanization of radicalism (Daniel DeLeon, Emma Goldman, CLR James…), the repression of radicalism resting on the rhetoric of national identity (the « Americanization » defended by the American Legion in the 1920s, the opposition between American and Un-American…), the articulation and conflict between internationalist beliefs and national belonging, foreign-language radicalism (biographies of activists, propaganda in languages other than English…), the role of racial issues – or their absence – in the framing of the relationship between radicalism and national identity, comparative perspectives, theoretical approaches to the conciliation of Marxism and Americanism, controversies among historians on the relationship between radicalism and Americanism (the long posterity of Werner Sombart) and problems arising from this narrative.

Paper proposals (about 500 words) should be submitted by May 31st, 2019. Papers (8 000-10 000 words) will be due in October 2019.

Please send your proposals to

Transatlantica website:

(posted 30 March 2019)

Learn? Escape? Feel? Contemporary Perspectives in Teen and Young Adult Literature
Romanica Silesiana n° 17
Deadline for  proposals: 31 May 2019

Despite the ongoing debate regarding the declining number of young readers, it is impossible to ignore the results of the surveys carried out by Centre National du Livre between 2016 and 2018 in the age group of 15+, 7-9 and recently also 15-25[1]. Not only do the young read, but also love reading, the research shows. However, even if these results seem optimistic, the analysis should not avoid observations of multiple changes that have been part of the practice of reading among the young as well as of the choice of their read and the causes of their reluctance to opt for this particular activity.

In the framework of Romanica Silesiana 17, we would like to examine, on the one hand, the preferences and behaviors of teenagers and young adults, also by making an attempt to answer the question regarding their expectations and reasons for which they choose a given book. On the other hand, we seek to confront the requirements of the young readership with what contemporary literature offers. It would also be crucial to ponder on the changes related to the representation of the young reader’s world in both realistic and fantasy novels for this age group, especially in the context of its reflection of reality and authors’ creative choices[2]. With reference to the central ideas of literature for teenagers and young adults, which can be expressed with the help of the juxtapositions educate/learn, invite to escape/dream, touch/be moved, our reflection, focused on Francophone, Anglophone and other literatures, may concern, in particular, the following lines of research:

  • What do teenagers and young adults look for in the realistic novel and what can it offer to them with its themes (identity(-ies), religion(s), (in)tolerance, values promoted by society, love, sexuality, body, tyranny of beautiful and athletic bodies, handicap and diseases, violence, death, etc.) [3].
  • In reference to Maria Cecire’s research[4], does literature for teenagers and young adults play an important role in establishing one’s national identity? Does it contribute to the promotion of tolerance and show how to become more open to the other?
  • Do young readers escape reality by choosing imaginative stories in order to live adventures of initiation or rather follow the trends of the media?
  • What interests the young in horror or mystery stories? Are these picked by teenagers or rather young adults? What are the consequences of hybridization of novels for younger audiences? What other methods are used to attract them? Do authors follow the rules which guarantee commercial success at the expense of didactic and literary legitimacy?
  • What is the role of creativity in the construction of imaginary worlds and how does such a world influence the development of imagination?
  • What can young audiences learn about the functioning of the world regardless of the genre represented by the text? What decides about the choice of the genre or the subgenre of a novel? What are the consequences of such decisions on the representation of a given story? And on readers’ perception of the text?
  • What messages are offered by teenage and young adult literature? Can it ever liberate itself from the triad explanation-moralization-simplification? Is YA literature original or does it borrow both from literature for adolescents and adults not to be deemed ‘a marketing ploy’ or ‘an editors’ fantasy’? Has it been created in order to bypass the limitations imposed by the law 49-956 of July 16, 1949 regarding publications for young readers?
  • What is the correlation between the decline in the number of young readers and the mass production of books as well as the growing publishing offer?

The proposals of articles, in French or English, including an abstract of 200 words (with a short bio-note) are to be sent in by 31st May 2019 at The publication of the issue is scheduled for the second half of 2020.

Important dates :
31st May 2019 – deadline for the proposal submission
10th June 2019 – notification of the acceptance / rejection of the proposal
15th September 2019 – submission of the final paper

On behalf of Romanica Silesiana: Ewa Drab and Aleksandra Komandera, editors
Institute of Romance Languages and Translation Studies
University of Silesia in Katowice (Poland)

[1] Cf.

[2] Catherine Butler, “Modern children’s fantasy” in: Edward James and Farah Mendlesohn (eds), Cambridge Companion to Fantasy Literature. Cambridge University Press, 2012, p. 225.

[3] Cf. Denise Escarpit, La Littérature de jeunesse. Itinéraire d’hier à aujourd’hui, Éditions Magnard, 2008 ; Danielle Thaler, Alain Jean-Bart, Les Enjeux du roman pour adolescents, L’Harmattan, 2002.

[4] Maria Cecire, “Medievalism, Popular Culture and National Identity in Children’s Fantasy Literature”, in: Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, 9(3), 2009.

(posted 20 May 2019)