Calls for Manuscripts


Below is a current listing of calls for manuscripts that have been sent to us. If you would like to post a call here, please send relevant information to the ASLE Managing Director. Deadlines are in bold.

Those interested in journal and book publication should also consult the following pages:

List of Ecocritical Journals
List of Ecocritical Presses
Book-Publishing Wisdom (from C. L. Rawlins)


 

Posted August 8, 2014.  Studies in Animals and Literature, new book series from Palgrave. At present, various academic disciplines can be found in the process of undergoing an ‘animal turn’. This series will publish work that looks, specifically, at the implications of this ‘animal turn’ for the field of Literary Studies. It will publish studies of the representation of animals in literary texts across the chronological range of Literary Studies from the Middle Ages to the present and with reference to the discipline’s key thematic concerns, genres and critical methods.

This will be the first series to explore animal studies within the context of literary studies; together, the volumes (comprising monographs, edited collections of essays and some shorter studies in the Palgrave Pivot format) will constitute a uniquely rich and thorough scholarly resource on the involvement of animals in literature. The series will focus on literary prose and poetry, while also accommodating related discussion of the full range of materials and texts and contexts (from theatre and film to fine art, journalism, the law, popular writing, etc) with which Literary Studies now engages.

If you are interested in finding out more about Palgrave Studies in Animals and Literature, or in proposing a volume for the series, please contact the series editors or Palgrave editors below:

SERIES EDITORS:
Susan McHugh, Professor and Chair of English at the University of New England, USA (smchugh@une.edu)
Robert McKay, Senior Lecturer at the University of Sheffield, UK (R.McKay@sheffield.ac.uk)
John Miller, Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century Literature at the University of Sheffield, UK (John.Miller@sheffield.ac.uk)

PALGRAVE MACMILLAN EDITORS:
Ben Doyle, Commissioning Editor, Literature (b.doyle@palgrave.com)
Ryan Jenkins, Editorial Assistant, Literature (Ryan.Jenkins@palgrave-usa.com)
www.palgrave.com


    

Submission period September 1, 2014 to May 1, 2015. KUDZU SCHOLAR (AUTUMN EQUINOX) (Vol-5. Iss-3, 2015), Theme: Sustenance and Sustainability. For our autumnal scholarly issue, we are interested in examinations of food, agriculture, sustainability, remediation, consumption, marketing, distribution, and allocations of resources in literature and popular culture. Can we eliminate or manage invasive species by eating them? How is food rhetoric inherently ecological? What is the relationship between science writing and creative writing in this discourse? What makes food sustainable, or is this merely rhetoric? How can we sustain postcolonial environments? How is Kudzu sustainable? Send us pedagogical essays on approaches to teaching sustainability and on civic engagement. What is sustainable sexuality? How does ideology feed our understanding of sustainability? Are MOOCs sustainable? Essays on the ways that writing sustains us and sustainable (and ecological) approaches to writing and publishing are also encouraged. We are also interested in book reviews, be they ever so tangentially connected to our theme.

To submit, visit: quarterly.kudzuhouse.org/submit
Query: editor@kudzuhouse.org
Note: 5.3’s categories open September 1st and end May 1st.


 

November 10, 2014.  Critical Insights: American Writers in Exile. We seek essays of 5,000 to 6,000 words for an anthology that explores the work of some of the more popular and/or influential American writers in exile.  While we understand the term “exile” to refer typically to American writers who have either been forced to leave the United States or, more commonly, chosen self-exile, this term need not be defined so narrowly.  That is, the United States has long been a refuge for people and writers from many countries, and many of these writers have gone onto become recognized as “American” writers.  Thus, in our view, the phrase “in exile” involves writers moving across borders in multiple directions and for multiple reasons, including for reasons of duress (official or personal) or personal quest.  Besides the famous Paris years before, between, and after the world wars (which includes such writers as Sherwood Anderson,  F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Richard Wright and many others), some writers commonly thought to be American writers in exile include James Baldwin, Ambrose Bierce, Elizabeth Bishop, William Burroughs, Hart Crane, John Dos Passos, T.S. Eliot, Janet Flanner, Washington Irving, Henry James, James Jones, Henry Miller, Anaïs Nin, Katherine Anne Porter, Sylvia Plath, Paul Theroux, Gore Vidal, Edith Wharton, Edmund White, Thomas Wolfe.  Of course, this is necessarily a partial list and we urge you to consider other relevant, well-known writers.

In line with the expectations of the Critical Insights series, we seek essays that:

1.    Provide undergraduate and advanced high school students with a comprehensive introduction to works and aspects of American writers in exile that they are likely to encounter, discuss, and study in their classrooms;

2.    Help students build a foundation for studying the works and aspects in greater depth by introducing them to key concepts, contexts, critical approaches, and critical vocabulary found in the scholarship relating to American writers in exile.

Hopefully, this collection of, hopefully, transnational, globalized American studies envisions understanding the intersection of our contemporary world and various American writers in exile in new cultural, historical, spatial, and epistemological frameworks.  How does literary production in an increasingly globalized world—when seen from exile—affect a view back towards an America left behind?  Or, conversely, how does exile push a writer to look outward to new American space(s)?  How does (do) your chosen text(s) construct the United States at/in/against the context of a globalized, dehumanizing, suffocating, and endless movement of goods and services and ideas across international boundaries? These and other questions you may believe are important to answer about American writers in exile will guide your proposal and, eventually, the final essays.

The volumes follow a uniform format, including four original introductory essays as follows:

  • a "critical lens" chapter (5,000 words; offers a close reading of the topic embodying a particular critical standpoint)
  • a "cultural and historical context" chapter (5,000 words; addresses how the subject at hand influences the theme(s) of American writers in exile across different time periods and cultures, as well as what makes the concept relevant to a contemporary audience)
  • a "compare/contrast" chapter (5,000 words; analyzes the topic of American writers in exile with regard to two or three different works, or authors, with some reference to the similarities and differences of their exile experiences contrasted with author(s) who did not leave the United States.)
  • a "critical reception" chapter (5,000 words; surveys major pieces of comment or criticism of the topic and the major concerns, or aspects, that commentators on the topic have attended to over the years)

The book will also include ten chapters that analyze the themes that pervade the experience of American writers in exile and focus specific attention on some of the best works and/or authors in the “genre.”  Each essay will be 5,000 words. Together, these chapters will offer readers a comprehensive introduction to the essential themes that arise from the lives and works of American writers in exile and reflect major critical approaches to the topic.

Writers are expected to:
Center their essays on works, topics, and critical approaches that are commonly studied at the advanced high school and undergraduate levels and are representative of foundational and mainstream critical discourse about American writers in exile. Topics and critical approaches should be neither dated, nor so cutting edge as to risk becoming dated in 5–10 years.

For the introductory critical reception and cultural/historical context essays, writers should not devote their essays to selective critical approaches or selective contexts. Rather, the introductory critical reception essay should offer readers a comprehensive overview of the body of criticism or comment on American writers in exile, and the introductory cultural/historical context should consider variety of contexts in which the topic is commonly situated. 

Abstracts between 500 - 1000 words & CV by November 10, 2014 to:
Jeff Birkenstein, Ph.D., & Robert Hauhart, J.D., Ph.D.
Saint Martin’s University, 5000 Abbey Way SE, Lacey, WA  98503
jbirkenstein@stmartin.edu
rhauhart@stmartin.edu

Completed first drafts of 5,000 words will be expected by: January 19, 2015


   

Submission Period December 1, 2014 to February 1, 2015. Queering Nature: Online Themed Issue at The Fourth River (Fall 2015). Heteronormative/queer. Natural/unnatural. Human/animal. Urban/wild. These binaries reveal heteronormative privilege, along with its assumption of dominance over nature and its definition of what's natural. But what if the world in which we live has always been naturally queer, and language has yet to reveal it?

Guest-edited by Dakota Garilli and Michael Walsh, The Fourth River's second online issue, to launch in Fall of 2015, will focus on Queering Nature, and we're looking for your best, most innovative nature and place-based writing in any genre or style. Hybrid forms, lyric essays, prose poems, and work that blends research with creative language are all welcome. Surprise us.

We want to see work that delves into the mess and nuance of our natural world. As Alex Johnson writes in his essay "How to Queer Ecology," "What queer can offer is the identity of I am also. I am also human. I am also natural. I am also alive and dynamic and full of contradiction, paradox, irony."

Submissions will open for this special issue on December 1, 2014, and close on February 1, 2015. Check The Fourth River website for more submission details at http://fourthriver.chatham.edu/index.php/submit


 

December 15, 2014. What Constitutes Food Edited Collection. Food culture has enjoyed a renaissance in recent years, moving to the forefront of many global and local cultural discourses. Among these discourses are the revival of old and/or dying culinary traditions, the promotion of exotic or underappreciated dishes, global fusion cooking, food and travel, ethical food consumption, the political and social dimensions of food production and consumption, and an examination of the potential for, and limitations to, eating sustainably. While much attention has been paid to practical, aesthetic, and social considerations of food, less has been examined concerning the semiotic and constructed aspects of food culture, in particular, what constitutes food, and for whom.

We seek essays that address topics that probe the oftentimes invisible or deeply coded messages about food in popular cultures, whether local food subcultures or global discourses and practices surrounding food. In particular, we are interested in research that combines cultural analysis of food cultures existing within various class systems, and analyses of visual and rhetorical representations of the commodification and codifying of what constitutes “food.” The goal of this edited collection is to challenge readers to re-evaluate perception and perspective in relation to food, in order to better comprehend everyday human experiences that sustain—or undermine—individuals and communities, including human-nonhuman communities and interrelationships between human food cultures and the natural world.

In order to unveil points of resistance at the heart of those activities most intimate to food practices, this collection will incorporate essays that cover a range of topics, including but not exclusive to:
•      everyday complacencies of cultural constructions of food
•      the tensions evident in consumer movement rhetoric
•      logical fallacies common to patriarchal, anthropocentric, and capitalist thinking as embodied or replicated in food cultures
•      energy consumption and eating
•      advertising and promotion of foods
•      domestication of animals, plants, and people in relation to food production
•      reproducing and butchering animals
•      bodily fragmentation and transition from a state of being to commodification
•      ethical positions and paradoxes in relation to food practices

The editor of Rowman and Littlefield’s Ecocritical Theory and Practice series have reached out to us with strong interest for this collection. Send short bio and 250 word abstract by December 15, 2014, to davishl3@miamioh.edu, karyn.pilgrim@esc.edu, & sinham@miamioh.edu.


 

December 15, 2014. Conrad and Nature: Ecology, Environment and Animals in Joseph Conrad’s Writings. The editors seek contributions to a new volume examining the ways that Joseph Conrad imagines earth, environment, nature, ecology, and nonhuman animals in his writings. From sea to jungle, from rivers to parks, from animals to weather, Joseph Conrad’s writings constantly engage the natural world. Conrad and Nature will gather fresh critical thinking about Conrad and the natural world to open new perspectives on Conrad and to broaden the archive of environmental criticism.

All theoretical frames and perspectives from the field of environmental criticism are welcome, including, but not limited to, theoretical and comparative perspectives informed by postcolonial ecologies; animal studies and nonhuman alterities; environmental and animal ethics; new materialism; material eco-criticism; ecofeminism; queer ecology; climate change; Romantic, modernist, and postmodernist conceptions of ‘nature.’ These and other investigations of the natural world as they appear in Conrad's work offer a timely intervention for modernist studies and promise to consolidate the advances Conradian scholars have already made toward a full environmental understanding of this influential writer.

Timeline and directions for submissions of proposals and completed articles:

  • We request 500-1000 word proposals by December 15, 2014. Reprints of previously published materials will be considered
  • The editors will acknowledge all submissions, and make final decisions by February 15, 2015
  • Those whose proposals are accepted should expect to submit completed 
  • Email all proposals to Lissa Schneider at Elizabeth.schneider-rebozo@uwrf.edu

EDITORS:

John G. Peters, University Distinguished Research Professor of English, General Editor for Conradiana, and Associate Chair of English, University of North Texas
John.Peters@unt.edu

Lissa Schneider-Rebozo, Director of Undergraduate Research and Associate Professor of English, University of Wisconsin-River Falls,
Elizabeth.schneider-rebozo@uwrf.edu

Jeffrey M. McCarthy, Director of the Environmental Humanities Graduate Program and Professor, Honors, University of Utah
j.mccarthy@utah.edu


 

December 31, 2014. Sustainability in/and Writing Intensive Courses.
As colleges and universities continue to seek ways to connect students both to campuses and to the world around them, sustainability-themed courses are gaining popularity, yet there is a dearth of work exploring both theoretical approaches to and best practices for such efforts.  Thus, the editor of this proposed volume seeks contributions for possible publication in Lexington Books' Ecocritical Theory and Practice series focusing on the fusion of sustainability-centered curricula with writing-intensive courses. Papers on any aspect of challenges, problems, and/or successes related to incorporating sustainability concepts and practices into writing-intensive classes are welcome.  By December 31, 2014, please submit a 500-word proposal to Joseph Lease at jlease@wesleyancollege.edu.  Completed essays for accepted proposals should be in the length of 6,000 to 9,000 words, and notifications of acceptance and of paper submission deadlines will be given in spring 2015.


 

January 2, 2015.  PLANT HORROR / THE MONSTROUS VEGETAL. The recent critical “nonhuman” turn asks, as Elizabeth Grosz has eloquently put it, about all those “animal, plant, and material forces that surround and overtake the human.” Of all those “forces,” it is perhaps the plant that has been most neglected, although that neglect is being redressed in such recent publications as Matthew Hall’s Plants as Persons: A Philosophical Botany (2011), Michael Marder’s Plant-Thinking: A Philosophy of Vegetal Life (2013), and Randy Laist’s Plants and Literature: Essays in Critical Plant Studies (2013). Theorists are recognizing the inherent importance of grappling with the ontological strangeness of plants, which have long inhabited what Michael Marder calls the “zone of absolute obscurity.” And vegetal life also plays a vital role in the project of re-thinking the past, present, and future of both human subjectivity and human survival.

Perhaps because of their irreducible difference from us, their intractable unfamiliarity, plants have often entered popular narratives as terrifying and terrorizing forces. They seem monstrous in their implacability and impersonality, their rooted unfreedom, their unintentionality, and their prolific and non-teleological “wild” growth. They also, as Marder has pointed out, take aim at our metaphysics, deconstructing structuring binaries such as body-soul, self-other, depth-surface, life-death, and the one and the many.

With the goal of exploring how and why plants have figured as terrifying in so many of our cultural narratives, we invite proposals for the first collection of essays on “plant horror”—that is, on how plants and all forms of vegetal life have figured as the monstrous in literature, film, television, and other media (video games, comics).

Three broad questions will guide the collection:
--What are the properties of plants that make them “monstrous”? How and why have they been represented as threatening to both human populations and the boundaries of the “human”?

--How has the plant been conceived in relation to the human?  Is vegetal life utterly “other”? Or does vegetal life become monstrous because we have disavowed its connection to us? Are there other ways (than irreducible difference) to think about the plant in relation to the human? Are the “monstrous” ways of plants able to be re-thought as possible futures for the human?

--How has “plant horror” served to critique human environmental abuses? What “real life” horror stories are there surrounding such recent human endeavors as the patenting of plants and genetically modified crops?

We are interested in essays that address what might be called the “canon” of plant horror: John Wyndham’s groundbreaking The Day of the Triffids (1951), as well as its numerous film and TV incarnations, The Thing from Another World (1951), Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), The Little Shop of Horrors (1960), Attack of the Killer Tomatoes (1978), Swamp Thing (1982), “The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill,” in Creepshow (1982), The Ruins (2008), and The Happening (2008). Almost all of these texts have appeared in more than one medium and have generated sometimes multiple re-makes, suggesting that they exert a persistent fascination. Essays that serve to expand this “canon” are very welcome.

We are also eager to receive abstracts that address how vegetal life features in unexpected ways and on the margins of narratives not explicitly about the depredations of plants—e.g., Doctor Who: The Seeds of Doom (1976), Batman and Robin (1997), Minority Report (2002), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), and AMC’s The Walking Dead (2010-present). We also welcome essays that discuss how plants feature in narratives produced outside the US and UK.

The editors of the collection are Dawn Keetley and Rita Kurtz. Dawn Keetley is an Associate Professor of English at Lehigh University and has recently published on horror TV and film in Gothic Studies and Americana, as well as editing “We’re All Infected”: Essays on AMC’s The Walking Dead and The Fate of the Human (McFarland, 2014). Rita Kurtz has a PhD in English from Lehigh University and teaches writing, popular culture, and American literature.

Please send abstracts of between 500 – 1,000 words to Dawn Keetley (dek7@lehigh.edu) and Rita Kurtz (rjk8@lehigh.edu) by January 2, 2015. Questions before the deadline are very welcome. 

We have several publishers in mind for this collection and will be sending inquiries shortly, preparing to send off a complete proposal soon after the January 2 deadline. (The editor of the Ecocritical Theory and Practice series, published by Lexington Books, an imprint of the Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Group, has expressed strong interest, for instance.) We anticipate that full essays will need to be completed by the summer of 2015.


 

January 10, 2015. The National Museum of Animals & Society seeks submissions of poetry and visual art for an upcoming exhibition on animals in poetry. This first of a kind exhibit will focus on poems, and the visual presentation of poems, that represent animal subjects and animals’ subjectivities, and that explore human-animal relations and the human-animal bond. Poets and visual artists are encouraged to participate.

The full call for submissions is here: http://www.museumofanimals.org/#/poetry/4548658

The deadline for submissions is January 10, 2015. Please pass this information on to anyone who may be interested in submitting.


 

January 15, 2015. Ecocriticism and Narrative Theory: Essays at a Critical Confluence. We seek submissions for a volume that asks what connections exist between material environments and narrative forms of understanding. Scholars are increasingly drawing our attention to the importance of the stories we tell each other about the environment, such that narratives have become an implicit touchstone for the emerging field of the environmental humanities. This work positions narratives as important occasions and repositories for the values, political and religious ideas, and sets of behaviors that determine how we perceive and interact with our ecological homes. Changing the way we interact with the environment, scholars such as Val Plumwood and Ursula Heise suggest, requires new stories about the world in which we live.

Yet despite this connection, scholarship that puts into dialogue two of the relevant schools of literary criticism—narrative theory and ecocriticism—is scant. Despite the fact that both of these approaches to the study of literature and culture are well established, they appear to have said little to one another; Narrative, the flagship journal of narrative theory, has never featured a special issue focusing on the environment in narratives, and ISLE, the flagship journal of ecocriticism, has never featured a special issue exploring the role that narrative structures play in representations of the environment. After organizing well-attended and generative panels on possible intersections at ASLE 2013 and the International Society for the Study of Narrative (ISSN) 2014, the co-editors for this volume feel confident that interest abounds for a collection that bridges the work done by scholars in these subfields of literary study.

If these conversations remain in their infancy, is not because the two approaches lack overlapping interests. On the contrary, opportunities for cross-pollination abound. The vocabulary developed by narratologists could benefit certain ecocritical studies, especially in helping ecocritical scholars better account for the formal aspects of representations of environment in various types of narratives (novels, short stories, films, etc). Ecocritical insights could help to broaden narrative theory, particularly in strengthening the connection between text and extratextual world of interest to many postclassical narratologists and expanding the repertoire of questions narrative theorists ask of narratives. Also, both of these approaches have complicated the disciplinary or methodological line(s) between science and humanistic inquiry; can they learn from one another’s attempts? More broadly, how might an approach to reading that combines ecocritical and narratological lenses sophisticate the way we think about narratives within the environmental humanities? What new insights might ecocritical and narratological lenses provide to conversations within the environmental humanities? The co-editors are confident that both approaches can learn from the other but feel this multi-voiced collection would give momentum to questions of how.

Possible topics under consideration in this collection include but are not limited to:
-Access to nature alongside/versus access to narrative
-Animals as characters
-Chronotopes
-Evolutionary approaches to narrative/“evocriticism”
-Gendered/ecofeminist approaches to narrating natural experience
-Heteroglossia and the natural sciences
-Lyric narrative and forms of nature writing
-Mimesis and diegesis
-Narration, expectation, and natural experience
-Narrative and/as environmental rhetoric
-Narrative and ecocentrism
-Narrative and/of space or place
-Narrative as mediator of natural events (journalism, nature, and narrative)
-“Natural” and “Unnatural” narrative
-Natural disaster as plot device, deus ex machina
-New environmental narratives
-Pathetic fallacy as narratorial strategy
-Person and narration (first, third; omniscient, restricted) and nonhuman narrators and focalizers
-Referentiality and political context
-Role of nature in indigenous forms of narrative
-Spatialization and temporality in narrative
-Storyworlds as virtual environments

Please submit a 250-300 word abstract of your proposed chapter contribution and a short bio-blurb by e-mail to Erin James (ejames@uidaho.edu) and Eric Morel (egmorel@uw.edu) by January 15, 2015. Also include the working title of your chapter, 3–5 keywords, and the names and contact details for all authors. 
Final chapters of 6,000 – 7,000 words will be due September 30, 2015.


 

January 15, 2015. Thinking Continental: Surveying, Exploring, and Inhabiting Macro Space, New scholarly collection. Editors: Susan Naramore Maher, Tom Lynch, Drucilla Mims Wall, and O. Alan Weltzien

Indigenous cultures have, for millennia, produced a rich oral and written literature of place, one that often implies intimate connections across particular landscapes. Globally, rich traditions of environmental writing illuminate particular places. In these works, the local and the global intersect in illuminating, often poetic ways. Much ecological writing celebrates the localized place, often negotiated subjectively in what Lawrence Buell has called “the Thoreauvian pilgrimage.” On the other hand, concepts like the “butterfly effect” remind us that the localized place can have a global impact, that the microplace and macrospace intersect. And, as Ursula Heise notes, the concept of the "local" is subjective, referring even to our local group of galaxies. Her observation suggests that our notion of “nature” is too limited, typically referring only to planet Earth, when in fact nature encompasses the entire cosmos.

Thinking Continental, a volume edited by a prominent quartet of scholars and writers, seeks submissions for a collection of interdisciplinary essays and creative works that will break new ground in engaging the complexities of place, including challenges to the accepted and often unproductive perceived boundaries between the human and non-human; the concept of micro and macro space in the mapped world; and other topics that explore the movement of meaning connected to the many layers of place and being. 

The collection will look at how to define these intersections. With contributions from scientists, social scientists, humanities scholars, and creative writers, Thinking Continental ranges over many questions and integrates international perspectives.

Among the salient questions that this collection will ask are: How does one envision an ecological macropoetics? How do old and new voices among storytellers, poets, and essayists chronicle and celebrate the vital connections between micro- and macrospace? How do they infuse the local with the global, the global with the local? How might geospatial analysis and digital humanities aim important new lenses onto global realities? How do deep time pathways—DNA, geological sciences, astrophysics—guide us toward a better long view of lived space? How can globally focused narrative remain personal and intimate? How might thinking continental advance bioregional agenda or address pressing issues like climate change, deforestation, industrial agriculture, species decline, heedless growth?

With a projected publication date of 2017, Thinking Continental will collect interdisciplinary voices and illuminate the multiple ways into biomes, continents, and global history.

Information for Contributors:
Length of Abstract: 1-3 pages
Deadline for submission: January 15, 2015
A prospectus with accepted abstracts will be submitted to a small number of academic presses by March 1, 2015. The editors are experienced editors and scholars, whose publications and reputations are well established. We are confident in the book’s concept and its marketability. Three presses are at this point interested in the proposal. 

Send Abstracts and queries via email to: Dr Susan Naramore Maher at smaher@d.umn.edu
Or fax to: Dean Susan Naramore Maher, College of Liberal Arts, 218-726-6386
Or mail to: Dr. Susan Naramore Maher, College of Liberal Arts, 1208 Kirby Drive, Duluth, MN 55803


 

January 15, 2015. Writing Creaturely Lives: Literature, Culture, History. We invite proposals for contributions to be included in a projected volume on the notion of “the creaturely” as a way of conceptualizing forms and modes of life within, between, across or beyond species that allow us to challenge or problematize clear-cut notions of the human and the animal (including an idea of human-animal relations as an interaction between two or more neatly separated and separable entities). The creaturely, as we understand it, can refer both to conceptions, experiences or narratives of human animality as well as the manifold and often ambivalent relations between the human and the nonhuman ranging from the hegemonic to the heterotopian or the transgressive. In addition, focusing on the creaturely in human and animal lives might allow us to better conceptualize the tightly interwoven structure of the social, the cultural and the biological. The creaturely, then, does not necessarily refer to the actual creature as such nor to a state or condition of creatureliness, but can also be understood in terms of a relation, a mode, a becoming. Instead of attempting anything close to a definition, however, we use the notions creature and creaturely in a strategically vague sense in order to encourage a broad and open approach to the topic. This means that the book's aim is not so much to simply argue for a new perspective (or even yet another turn), but rather to critically explore the possibilities, promises and pitfalls of thinking, writing and reading in terms of the creaturely. If we concede that approaching and coming to terms with the creaturely still necessitates a reliance on narratives of some kind, we also wish to encourage some critical thoughts on what the term “narrative” might mean, what it contains – both in the sense of consisting of, comprising, embracing and regulating, controlling, taming –, where its potentials as well as its boundaries and limitations lie.

For example, and more specifically, textual analyses might ask if and how various kinds of narratives allow us to find traces of the human, the animal, the creaturely beyond the merely representational and the culturally constructed. Can there ever be something other- or more-than-human in human narratives? Are narratives always already necessarily human? Do we need different or new kinds of narratives or modes of reading (for example, as Anat Pick argues, in the sense of a “creaturely poetics”)?

While this volume will have a literary studies focus, the idea of “literature” underpinning this volume is a broad and inclusive one (hence our focus on the term “narrative”) and not limited to fictional texts in a narrow sense. Rather, we are interested in the various ways in which discourse materializes itself as text and narrative and understand the dividing line between factuality and fiction as porous and permeable. We also encourage and seek to include a number of contributions from related disciplines such as cultural studies, philosophy or history that discuss the creaturely on a conceptual, theoretical and philosophical level or its specific figurations and manifestations in literature, culture and history.

In addition to those aspects already mentioned above, the following are some of the many possible questions and problems that may be addressed in the contributions to this volume:

  • What are the boundaries of the creaturely and should we draw such boundaries after all?
  • How can this concept be employed to challenge the Cartesian-humanist boundary between human and nonhuman worlds and the workings of what Giorgio Agamben has termed the “anthropological machine”? Do such challenges necessarily imply the agency of (human) subjects and intentional forms of resistance, or can they manifest themselves below the threshold of consciousness and rationality on the levels of corporeal practice and inter- or “trans-corporeality” (Stacy Alaimo)?
  • Should we think of the creaturely in terms of subjectivity and intersubjective relations or should we, on the contrary, employ this concept in order to think beyond or even “unthink” the subject?
  • What role does the creaturely play in historical or contemporary discourses and how is it produced, regulated, maintained and/or disavowed in such discourses?
  • How are creaturely lives experienced within, against or beyond normative and hegemonic frameworks and can we employ this notion to articulate critiques of such frameworks and/or conceptualize different modes of human and animal life and its manifold intersections?
  • How is the creaturely in its material, discursive and/or imaginary forms related to questions of, for instance, gender, sexuality, race, dis/ability or species?
  • Do we need an ethics, politics, epistemology and/or ontology of creaturely life in the Anthropocene and in order to better address the challenges of ecological crisis, biodiversity loss and climate change?
  • To what extent and in what ways is creaturely life an object of modern biopolitics, biotechnology and/or biomedicine? Can thinking in terms of the creaturely be of relevance for and contribute to human and animal rights debates?
  • What is the specific literary response or contribution to the questions and quandaries outlined above? What does “writing” (and reading) creaturely lives entail?

We are looking for proposals on any of the topics mentioned above or any other related topics. Please send an abstract of no more than 500-600 words outlining your intended contribution to Roman Bartosch (roman.bartosch@uni-koeln.de) and Dominik Ohrem (ohremd@gmail.com) by January 15th, 2015. You will be informed if your proposal has been accepted by mid February 2015 at the latest. Finished papers are due September 15th, 2015. The publication is planned for late 2015/early 2016.


 

January 31, 2014. Ecotheology and Nonhuman Ethics: A Kinship of Compassion. After discussing various theologians' views on ecothodicy, Celia Deane-Drummond asks whether or not "humanity's task is to act as in some way as priest of creation . . . human creatures can take up the sufferings of the non-human world into an experience of a vision of God" (Deane-Drummond, Celia. Eco-Theology. London: Anselm, 2008. p 122). Individuals from diverse fields of study, such as Albert Schweitzer, William Wilberforce, and Lewis Carroll reflected an ethos of compassion about the human treatment of nonhumans in the world that stems from the Judeo-Christian tradition. Though I especially seek papers with compassion overtones from a Judeo-Christian perspective, academic papers addressing any aspect of nonhuman ethics from the angles of the humanities or the sciences are welcome.

Topics might include:
•    Kingdom theology
•    Solutions for/Prevention of Suffering
•    Ecotheology
•    Law/Justice
•    Laboratory ethics
•    Compassion/Mercy
•    Theodicy/Ecotheodicy
•    Field research
•    Animal/Plant ethics in history, religion, or literature
•    Jewish Ecology
•    Christian Ecology
•    Land Ethics
•    Human/Nonhuman Dwellings
•    Creature Kinship
•    Human-Nonhuman Communication

Email abstracts of 250-400 words to mbrotton@lasierra.edu by January 31, 2015.  Please include a brief bio of the author and a proposed title. This book proposal is supported by the editor of the Ecocritical Theory and Practice series, published by Lexington Books, an imprint of the Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group. For further information, please contact Melissa Brotton at mbrotton@lasierra.edu.


 

February 15, 2015.  Landscapes, Natures, Ecologies: Italy and the Environmental Humanities. We need new figurations for the humanities. We need to explore intellectual pathways in which critique goes together with creativity. We need critical practices that, defamiliarizing consolidated patterns of thinking, escort us out of the safety zones in which anthropocentrism, Eurocentrism, sexism, speciesism, ableism, constitute the normal discourse of our cultural paradigms. These inspiring ideas were expressed by the philosopher Rosi Braidotti in her keynote lecture on “Posthumanist Paradoxes” held in Zurich at the 2014 Conference of the American Association for Italian Studies. Intervening in a debate in which traditional humanistic approaches play a major role, Braidotti courageously called the audience to think beyond the usual disciplinary categories, and to embrace the more hybrid, inclusive, and ontologically participative mode of the environmental humanities. From a different angle, historian Dipesh Chakrabarty, in his essay “Postcolonial Studies and the Challenge of Climate Change,” echoes Braidotti’s stirring call to action as he expresses the need to “view the human simultaneously on contradictory registers: as a geophysical force and as a political agent, as a bearer of rights and as author of actions; subject to both the stochastic forces of nature (being itself one such force collectively) and open to the contingency of individual human experience; belonging at once to differently-scaled histories of the planet, of life and species, and of human societies.”

What do these calls mean for Italian studies? How can the rich tradition of Italian culture and Italy itself—in its multiple, historical, imagined, textual and material-discursive forms—contribute to these challenges? In our envisioned volume, tentatively titled Landscapes, Natures, Ecologies: Italy and the Environmental Humanities, we address these very issues. A necessary step to answer these questions, we believe, is that of defamiliarizing the imagination of Italy—often frozen in essentialist anthropological categories, romanticized in the aesthetic cliché of the “beautiful land,” and fixed in the human-centered discourse of classical humanist thinking—and to engage with the “disanthropocentric” voices and aspects of the Italian cultural horizon.

We envisage a volume of essays which focus on the many (often dissonant) landscapes, natures, and ecologies of Italy, meant both as a physical territory and as a terrain for cultural imagination. In our mind, the Italian landscapes discussed in this volume will go from the Arcadian dreams of rural perfection to the living nightmares of the ecomafia’s Triangle of Death; its natures will embrace medieval Bestiaria, Ortese’s mysterious iguanas, pumas and turtles, as well as the rapidly disappearing Apennine brown bear, Ursus arctos marsicanus, or the alien species “invading” our ecosystems; its ecologies will entail the uncontaminated beauty of Alpine regions as well as the Po Valley megalopolis and the “continuous cities” emerging every day from the thousands of hectares of agricultural land inexorably sacrificed to cement. Looking for narratives which “give a voice to objects, elements, forces,” as Jeffrey Cohen says, our gaze will include seas and volcanoes, the land and the atmosphere; we will reflect on literary texts, films, songs, art, as well as toxic bodies, urban systems, and all sorts of eloquent materialities which emerge in the Anthropocene.

Drawing on cutting-edge studies in ecocriticism and all the major fields of the eco-cultural debate, our goal is to build a creative critical discourse that elicits differences, pluralities, hybridizations, conflicts, and encounters, thus positioning Italian studies within the broader horizon of the environmental humanities. All of the essays will be thoroughly grounded in the latest developments in environmental discourse (including, for example, material ecocriticism, feminist environmentalism, posthumanism, animal studies, bio- and eco-semiotics, environmental justice and postcolonial environmental ethics, eco-activism, etc.). We welcome contributions from all areas and subjects of Italian studies, with a historical range from the Middle Ages to the contemporary age.

We are asking for articles of 6000 words, including footnotes and bibliography, following the MLA format. Proposals, in the form of 400-word abstracts, can be sent to the editors via their academic e-mail.
Deadline for abstract submission: February 15, 2015.
Deadline for manuscript submission: October 30, 2015.

Editorial team
Serenella Iovino, Comparative Literature, University of Turin, serenella.iovino@unito.it
Elena Margarita Past, Italian Literature, Wayne State University, elenapast@wayne.edu
Enrico Cesaretti, Italian Literature, University of Virginia, efc4p@virginia.edu


 

June 1, 2015. Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking America is seeking the best, freshest, and most insightful new writing that considers the implications of fracking. The editors seek prose and poetry that speaks to the complexity of fracking, conveys a sense of place, and includes personal experience. Published by Ice Cube Press, Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America will be the first anthology of creative writing to explore fracking in the United States. The editors seek provocative prose, rooted in story, and compelling verse that takes readers to new depths of perspective.

Submission Guidelines:
Deadline: June 1, 2015
Estimated publication date: March 2016
The editors are only accepting unpublished writing.

Simultaneous submissions are accepted; however, the piece must first appear in Fracture before appearing in any other publication.

A cover letter should accompany the submission, complete with contact information. Upon acceptance, the editors will request a three-sentence bio of each author.

The author’s name should not appear anywhere on the submitted manuscript.

Submissions must be in a Word document; if the author wishes that the editors see correct formatting of a piece, then the author may also submit their writing in a PDF file to ensure correct formatting.

Poetry: Submissions of up to 5 poems are accepted. The editors reserve the right to select one or more poems for inclusion in the anthology.
Prose: Submissions up to 4,000 words are accepted.

Please label your submissions file, as well as subject line of your email, as last name, title, and genre. (Example: Smith, “Fracking Fluid,” Poem.)  Email submissions to fractureanthology@gmail.com


 

Ongoing. "Environmental Cultures" Book Series, publisher Bloomsbury Academic. Environmental Cultures is a new series from Bloomsbury Academic (formerly Continuum) aiming to publish innovative work in ecocriticism and the environmental humanities. Environmental crisis is simultaneously and inseparably material and cultural, destructive and revolutionary. Besides complicating and endangering relationships between humans and other beings, it transforms human identities, communities and nations in unpredictable ways. Old distinctions between nature and culture are being eroded; new values, genres and media are emerging that respond to the crisis with mourning, scepticism, dismay, resourcefulness or ironic resignation. Environmental Cultures reflects the belief that cultural criticism can help avert, resolve, mitigate or at least comprehend ecological problems. It will publish ambitious, innovative literary ecocriticism and interdisciplinary, transnational and pedagogical scholarship on both traditional and digital media. The series will encourage reflexive theoretical critique and searching exploration of anti-environmentalist cultural forms as well as sophisticated literary analysis. Cultures are unavoidably environmental, for good and ill. Environmental Cultures will show how.

We seek book proposals on any topic in this field. We are especially looking for monographs that take the environmental humanities in new directions or widen its geographical scope, such as: digital ecocriticism; world/comparative literatures; anti-environmentalist cultures; new modes of nature writing; literary responses to ecological science. We are also commissioning ecocritical studies of national or regional literatures. We will commission monographs and collaboratively written books, but not edited collections or conference proceedings.

Titles in the Environmental Cultures series will be published as Bloomsbury Open Content. This successful publishing model ensures that the full text of each book is freely available online (under a Creative Commons licence) for browsing and searching at the same time as being available for sale as print or ebooks.

Series editors: Richard Kerridge (Bath Spa University) and Greg Garrard (UBC).
To have a proposal considered for the series, please email Dr. Greg Garrard (greg.garrard@ubc.ca) for the form.