Ethics and Choice in the Works of Terry Pratchett
Call For Papers: Ethics and Choice in the Works of Terry Pratchett
Ed. Kristin Noone and Emily Lavin Leverett
(This is for the same volume Kristin sent out before, if you saw that!)
Before his death, he was knighted for “services to literature” in 2008, and Pratchett scholarship has emerged as a fertile field, analyzing the impact of Pratchett’s contributions to fantasy, literacy, and theories such as narrative causality. Discussing Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novels, Gray Kochhar-Lindgren observes that Pratchett’s fantasy “disrupts the cosmos of putatively given ‘good order’ for the sake of a more just order. Justice depends finally not on law but on inventiveness” (Discworld and the Disciplines, McFarland, 2014). Pratchett’s worlds interrogate themes of inventiveness and justice via intertexuality (allusions, references, pop-culture and folklore), identity (British and global, located in time and partaking of the heterotemporal), adaptation (novels, film, plays, even board games), and genre-crossing (young adult, fantasy, satire, science fiction).Terry Pratchett’s writings celebrate the possibilities opened up by inventiveness and creation. Taking this as our thematic core, this collection will explore Pratchett’s construction of ethics that value and valorize informed self-aware choice, knowledge of the world in which one makes those choices, crafting a compassionate worldview through play and humor, and acts of continuous self-examination and creation.
What impact, for instance, does Pratchett’s early science fiction writing have on his later turn toward fantasy? How might an investigation of Pratchett’s fondness for mythology and British folklore deepen our understanding of contemporary British identity and its complex relationship to colonialism? In what ways do themes of identity formation and exploration resonate in both the young adult novels and the novels for older readers, and to what extent do we see Pratchett’s non-Discworld stories reflect or extend or even critique the predominant themes within Discworld, which must be understood not as a singular phenomenon but in dialogue with the rest of his work? How might we take into account elements such as his return to science fiction (the Long Earth series), his collaborations with other writers (e.g. Neil Gaiman and Stephen Baxter), and the final Discworld novels, which suggest an integration of the young adult Discworld stories with those for older readers, emphasizing innovation and connectivity?
We will especially be interested in contributions discussing Pratchett’s ethics not only in Discworld but also his non-Discworld works, especially as they inform or connect to Discworld or other novels; his collaborations with other authors; intertextuality both in terms of allusions to pop culture and uses of historical or temporally distinct moments; adaptations into various media, play and gaming, fan interactions and participatory experiences of Discworld; crossings of genres, satire, and inventiveness; choice and identity and the creation of self and of narratives; and the ways in which Pratchett’s writing links these acts of transformative choice and acts of narrative to his ethicas, moral self-examination, and internally aware and often difficult moments of compassion.
Please submit proposals (300-700 words) to the editors by August 15 2017; if accepted, initial chapter drafts will be due in November 2017. Send proposals, along with a brief bio and contact information, to Kristin Noone and Emily Leverett at firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions can also be sent to email@example.com