Call for Submissions

 

We currently have two active calls for submissions. Please review the guidelines below.


Media Fields Issue 10: Digital Distribution

Submission Deadline: October 24, 2014

 

In the past few years, media studies scholars such as Alisa Perren, Stuart Cunningham, and Ramon Lobato, have persuasively made the case for the importance of studying distribution. No longer considered simply the “space between production and consumption,” distribution has quickly become a site of study in and of itself. In its myriad forms, distribution serves as the construction of difference, as the instantiation of hierarchies, and, as Sean Cubitt puts it, “the material ground of cultural dominance and political power.” Therefore, the study of distribution increasingly becomes a key locus from which to start our investigations into the cultural, political, and social ramifications of media. 

Alongside this newfound attention to distribution, scholars have also begun to trace the rise and proliferation of digital technologies. Over a decade after the coining of the term Web 2.0, and fifteen years after the launch of Napster, the number of platforms and formats for the digital circulation of media has skyrocketed and, consequently, their ensuing communities have multiplied. Contemporary media studies has turned its attention not only to digital technologies themselves but also to the new media ecosystems emerging from these technologies.

By considering these two intertwined, burgeoning trends in media studies scholarship, this issue of Media Fields Journal will explore how the theorization and practice of distribution transforms in light of the digital. If distribution is the movement of things—information, commodities, values, etc.—through space, the digital has now complicated what each of these aspects constitutes. The types of things that can be distributed across media have changed; the ways these things move are different; even the space through which they move has shifted. Furthermore, what phenomena, technologies, and practices fall under the purview of distribution have become more varied and disparate.

For the Digital Distribution issue, Media Fields Journal seeks submissions that address questions about the role of distribution—as a practice, as a space, or as a process—in light of the digital. What are these new technologies and platforms, and how do they alter our relationships to media content? How are relations of power between producers and consumers restructured? How is geographical space itself reconfigured or reimagined? How is the exchange of values and affects facilitated by digital networks? How does the digital change the very metaphors used to discuss distribution, such as pipes, conduits, channels, networks, flow, etc.? In turn, how do these metaphors shape our projects and our theories of distribution?

We invite submission that engage with the interconnections between distribution, the digital, and space in relation to topics such as:

Geography:
Geoblocking, International Censorship, Reformatting, Global Internet Penetration and Platform Availability, Satellite and Cable Infrastructure, Geographical Case Studies

Informal Distribution Practices:
Piracy Practices and Networks, Do-It-Yourself Distribution, Cyber Underworlds and the “Darknet”

Social Space:
Online Fan Practices, Social Networking, Cultures of Hacking, Social Apps

Regulation and Policy:
Cloud Governance, Net Neutrality, Spectrum Management, Privacy Rights, Regulating E-Waste

Digital Platforms and Evolving Business Practices:
Connected Viewing and Mobile Media, Content Flow and Windowing, Web TV, TV Everywhere, Format Theory, Digital Radio and Podcasting, Platform Interfaces and Design, Audience Segmentation and Metadata

Essay submissions are typically 1500-2500 words. We encourage submissions from any disciplinary approach relevant to media distribution. Scholarly or critical contributions in atypical formats are welcome. Along with your submission, please include a 50-word biographical statement in the body of your email or as a separate attachment. Email submissions or inquiries to issue editors Jennifer Hessler and Juan Llamas-Rodriguez at submissions@mediafieldsjournal.org. The deadline for submission is October 24, 2014. 

 

Issue 9: Spaces of Protest

Submission Deadline EXTENDED: September 19, 2014


“Insurrectional experiences have taught us how unimaginable things can very quickly enter into the field of possibilities.” In the time that has elapsed since Jacques Rancière uttered these prescient words in a 2011 interview, their validity has been repeatedly confirmed. From the Arab Spring to Occupy Wall Street and from Cairo’s Tahrir Square to Istanbul’s Gezi Park, creative struggles and imaginative demonstrations have organically emerged from masses of people who had hitherto been considered passive, apathetic, or without agency. These collective movements, these sparks of revolutionary fire, have done much more than simply demonstrate an underlying discontent. They have also challenged the basic framework through which we interpret our surroundings, making visible the invisible and possible the impossible.

In this issue of Media Fields, we are exploring practices of protest as they relate to space and media. How are activists appropriating spaces and reclaiming the commons? How are they using technology and media, new and old, to intervene in relations of power and oppression, production and control? How are these activities challenging our understanding of culture and identity and reconfiguring our notion of the sensible? Or by contrast, following Ranajit Guha’s suggestion, how might we reconstitute insurgent politics by reading hegemony in reverse—uncovering how protest is officially rendered as ineffectual, criminal or invisible? How might media scholars locate alternative traditions of political mobilization? How do revised notions of materialist agencies help us grasp the complex assemblages mobilized when protests occur that include media, meaning and actants? What is the continued relevance of Marxism, psychoanalysis, and film and media theory in light of contemporary developments? How do we need to rework our theoretical approaches to accommodate contemporary circumstances and contingencies?

We welcome paper submissions dealing with all of these issues. Submissions may address a specific site or practice of protest, or they may take a broader view, dealing theoretically with the newly emerging constellations of solidarity and radical geographic/spatial imaginaries. We also invite submissions that excavate divergent and alternative emphases and practices as they relate broadly to media and protest. Consequently we welcome submissions that suggest new theoretical approaches to these themes as well as ones that reimagine (or imagine anew) theories of political engagement, change, and revolution.

Essay submissions are typically 1500-2500 words. We also invite proposals for scholarly or critical engagements in atypical formats such as interviews, art, or photography. We encourage approaches to this topic from scholars in cinema and media studies, anthropology, architecture, art and art history, communication, cultural studies, ecology, geography, literature, musicology, sociology, and other relevant fields. Email submissions, proposals, and inquiries to Issue Editors Greg Burris and Alston D’Silva at submissions@mediafieldsjournal.org. The deadline for full submissions has been EXTENDED to September 19, 2014. 

Submissions may look at a variety of topics including:

  • Theorizations and contextualizations of specific practices of protest.
  • Comparative approaches between different sites of protest.
  • The place of Marxist, post-Marxist, and neo-Marxist approaches to revolution, change, and protests and their critiques.
  • Interventions and discursive practices within the public sphere, alternative publics and counterpublics. Queer and/or feminist theoretical interventions into neoliberalism and the Habermasian conception of public sphere.
  • The status of film and media theory in the aftermath of protests and revolution (Occupy, Protests of ‘68).
  • Examinations of protests and rebellions in relation to contemporary radical thought including Alain Badiou’s notion of the Event, Jacques Rancière’s distribution of the sensible, or Slavoj Žižek’s Act.
  • Examinations of protests and protest movements via system theory, material and social assemblages or actor-network theory.
  • Anticolonial movements and indigenous resistance, past and present, against cultural hegemony, appropriation and genocide. 
  • Representations of protest in film, television, and new media.
  • Examinations of the ways in which practices of protest constitute and/or disrupt categories of gender, sexuality, or nationality.
  • Responses to corporate surveillance and dataveillance.
  • Discussions of hacking, countersurveillance, and culture jamming as well as responses to and condition of media blackouts, censorship and other government control over media and communication. 
  • Practices of solidarity, coalition-building in and across spaces, identities, and movements (for instance, BDS). Or conversely examinations of practices undercutting solidarity, such as appropriation and strikebreaking.
  • Media access and the digital divide in relation to protests and social movements.