Call for Proposals: Collection on Violence Against Women in Contemporary American Popular Culture

full name / name of organization: 
Kara Mollis
contact email: 

Despite significant political advancements for women in the United States in the twenty-first century as well as important feminist work to combat gender-based violence in recent years, statistics on violence against women continue to be staggering. This edited collection seeks to explore the role that American popular culture plays in this social phenomenon by bringing together analyses of representations of violence against women in various popular cultural texts and practices of the twenty-first century, including but not limited to television, film, music, bestsellers, magazines, blogs, fashion, sports, and cultural movements. As a whole, the collection will engage cultural texts that perpetuate gender ideologies and social practices that support a culture of violence against women, especially ideologies and practices that intersect with issues of race, ethnicity, class, and sexuality, as well as texts that challenge or interrogate that culture.

Essays may focus on representations of or issues underpinning any gender-based act of violence, including acts of intimidation, dehumanization, exploitation, and deprivation, committed by individuals or by social institutions that cause physical, sexual, psychological, and/or social harm to women. A primary aim of the collection is to examine numerous aspects of and questions about the issue of violence against women, but it might include essays that explore how popular culture perpetuates, challenges, combats, questions, or reconfigures ideas about/conventional practices involving the following:

• Definitions of violence against women
• Victim blaming
• Language and violence against women
• Domestic/intimate partner violence
• Workplace violence
• Sexual violence/"rape culture"
• Femicide
• "Self-Inflicted" violence
• Bullying
• Poverty
• Issues of race, ethnicity, and/or class
• Issues of sexuality/sexual identity
• Technology
• War/militarism
• Marriage/family
• Religious practices
• Education
• The law/criminal justice system
• Health services/medical practices
• Antiviolence movements/institutional responses

Please send abstracts of no more than 500 words and a brief biographical statement with contact information to Kara Mollis at by April 1, 2012. Complete essays chosen from the abstracts will be due on September 1, 2012 and should be 4000-6000 words.