Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid: Representing Taboo in Contemporary Pop Culture

deadline for submissions: 
April 1, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Dr. Christina Fawcett, Dr. Marc Ouellette & Dr. Delores Phillips
contact email: 

We are pleased to invite contributions to an edited volume that analyzes sexual taboo in contemporary popular culture, with an eye toward theorizing taboo sexual practices using frameworks that reveal the uncomfortable or silenced spaces that surround non-normative sexual desire. We seek chapters that focus on how different cultural products normalize the taboo, bringing deviant behavior into mainstream spaces that challenge the traditional relegation of non-normative behavior to fringe spaces. We invite readings of literary, film, interactive and fan-created works that reveal positive representations of taboo, opening our readers to a sympathetic experience of deviancy and socially proscribed behavior.

Contributions can treat historical constructions of sexual taboos in popular culture as well as incest, pedophilia, hebephilia, necrophilia, BDSM, bodily abjection, and sexual subcultures. Theoretical interventions such as anthropological examinations, theories of the monstrous, the horrific, and the abject, machine structures, or affective networks are welcome.

We ask contributors to submit a 300-word abstract, a working title, and a 150-word bio by April 1, 2020 to taboobook2020@gmail.com. Completed essays of 7000 to 8000 words will be due December 31, 2020. 

Christina Fawcett (University of Winnipeg)
Marc Ouellette (Old Dominion University)
Delores B. Phillips (Old Dominion University)