Sunday, September 26, 2010

CFP: Gender and Superheroes (Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics; January 1)

Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
Special Issue: Gender and Superheroes
Editors: David Huxley and Joan Ormrod
Manchester Metropolitan University, UK
Consulting Editor: Roger Sabin

The superhero genre dominates the comics industry with representations of hypermuscular action men or sexy women wearing costumes that show off their near naked bodies. There are examples of more diverse approaches to both creating and analysing these figures but they remain, as yet, in the minority. Much of this work is produced by mainly male creators for similarly constructed audiences. Whilst that does not limit the possibilities of the superhero, to date there has been little substantial work in superheroes and gender beyond Trina Robbins work on women superheroes and Ndalianis’s edited collection of essays on heroism in which a few essays touch upon superheroes. This area, however, is of great interest to academia as evidenced by a significant proportion of papers submitted to the journal in recent months. We are, therefore, proposing a special issue in which this topic can be examined in a more sustained manner. Submissions are invited of papers 5000-7000 words by January 1, 2011 relating but not limited to the following topics:

  • Representing gender: masculinity, femininity, gay, transvestite superheroes – transgression or queer readings
  • The superhero/ine body
  • Superheroes in other nations – eg: British, Indian or Latin American superheroes and how they hail transnational and national identities
  • Representing superheroes in comics – eg: Love and Rockets, Kim Dietch’s The Cat
  • Revisioning of the character – for instance, the reworking of Catwoman
Theoretical Issues
  • Feminist theory and gendered identities – Judith Butler
  • Gaze and psychoanalytic
  • Class and the superhero
  • Manga superheroes and their audiences
  • Girls reading superheroes
  • Fanboys and specific heroes
  • Fan production – slash fiction, changing gendered identities
History and Industry
  • Online comics – fan production or industrial production
  • Tracing specific characters within an industrial context
  • Creators’ representations of gender – eg: Alan Moore, Promethea, Grant Morrison, The Invisibles
We’ll be happy to address any queries about the issue if you email either Dave Huxley or Joan Ormrod

If you are submitting an article please remember to check our format guidelines and obtain agreement from copyright holders for any images you plan to use. If you have queries about this then visit the Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics website for clarification. We can publish black and white or colour images.

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