CFP: Paradoxa: Ursula K. LeGuin (8/31/07; journal issue)

full name / name of organization: 
steffen hantke

Call for Papers: Paradoxa: World Literary Genres
A Volume on Ursula K. Le Guin

"She is the kind of writer businessmen hate most, producing challenging,
unpredictable books whose meanings are too elusive to be easily controlled."
- Meredith Tax, The Nation:, January 28, 2002

If Ursula Le Guin were Japanese, she would surely be designated a National
Treasure. Her work in Science Fiction and Fantasy spans the fields of
fiction and criticism. From her first published story in 1962, her writing
has blended elegance and passion, vividness and acuity, and she has the
unerring ability to capture the unexpected perspective that is the trademark
of science fiction. Her fantasy has achieved that genre's variant sense of
wonder, the taste of age and Elsewhere that Tolkien called the air of
Faerie. Over the scope of her long career as a storyteller, a poet and a
critical thinker, perhaps her greatest achievement has been her work's
enduring commitment to ideas as being both politicized and political. It is
this commitment, particularly from the 1970s on, when she began thinking
about gender in both theory and fiction, that has made Ursula Le Guin a
major presence in SF and Fantasy, and in the smaller but more exacting
fields of feminist SF and Fantasy.

In these fields Ursula Le Guin's contribution is remarkable, not simply for
her fiction's shaping of political debate in the more immediate and gripping
form of characters' action, speech, and literal flesh and blood, but also
for her jargon-free and emotionally rich critical voice. And, uniquely, for
the courage that has allowed her not simply to shift a position, but to
admit, freely and in print, as with "Is Gender Necessary: Redux," that her
previous arguments, however famous and praised, could have been wrong. It is
courage, as much as commitment and talent, that has made Ursula Le Guin not
merely one of the best known but one of the most respected and perhaps best
loved writers in her field.

Ursula Le Guin has been involved with _Paradoxa_ since the journal's first
issue, when she graciously agreed to participate in a "Paradoxa Interview"
(1995.) She also agreed to serve on the journal's Board of Editors, and has
subsequently contributed articles, and with them wisdom, expertise and
entrée at many stages along _Paradoxa_'s path.

_Paradoxa_ is now pleased to propose the publication of a special Ursula Le
Guin volume, which will be in part a collection of critical essays and
commentary about her work. This call for papers requests abstracts or
expressions of interest for essays dealing with her adult SF and Fantasy,
her critical writing, her books for children and young adults, and her
poetry, including her notable translation of the _Tao Te Ching_, and ranging
from overviews of her work to studies of specific texts. Especially welcome
will be essays that assess the value or standing of this work or works to
the field(s) as a whole and at the present.

We are also seeking personal reminiscences or memoirs, from those who have
known Ursula Le Guin firsthand, those who have worked in these fields, or
simply those who have read her work and wish to record and/or honor the
value it has had for them. Such memoirs will be very welcome, as a means of
deepening the volume's perspective and extending the academic and critical
picture to the personal and, of course, the political.

Academic papers may be from 4000-10000 words. We ask that reminiscences or
memoirs be substantial, 1000 words or more, rather than paragraph-length
tributes. Due date for proposals and/or abstracts is March 30, 2007. Please
send proposals by e-mail to Final date for submissions
will be August 31, 2007, and the volume will be published in 2008. For
further information about Paradoxa, please visit our website:

Guest Editor for this special volume on Ursula Le Guin is Sylvia Kelso, who
works part-time at James Cook University of North Queensland. She has
published several articles on science fiction and fantasy, especially in
women's writing, has analyzed Ursula Le Guin's SF in detail for her PhD., on
the interactions of SF and feminism, 1968-1989, and has an article on the
two most recent _Earthsea_ novels forthcoming in the Aqueduct Press
collection, _WisCon30 Chronicles_. Kelso has been on the Board of Editors of
_Paradoxa_ since its inception. Her first fantasy novel, _Everran's Bane_,
was published in 2005, and she has two further novels forthcoming in 2007,
_The Moving Water_ and _Amberlight_.

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Received on Sun Feb 04 2007 - 13:30:15 EST