MELUS CFP for 2015 Special Issue on African American Print Cultures

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MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States
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MELUS CFP for 2015 Special Issue: African American Print Cultures
Guest Editors: Joycelyn Moody and Howard Rambsy II

In 2015, a special issue of MELUS will showcase under-studied aspects of black print culture studies or book history. We are seeking scholarship that addresses, but is not limited to, the following questions:

• How are contemporary print matters—ranging from concerns such as the publication of new print editions of literary texts by emergent and historical US black writers to online and open access publishing as well as to the operations of the mainstream publishing industry—shaping our understanding of what African American literature is becoming?

• To what ends might K-12 language arts teachers and literature professors utilize racialized or racially-charged paraphernalia, pamphlets, postcards, and other artifacts to best enhance the learning experiences of US students in African American literature courses?

• How is digital humanities scholarship creating new, useful, or exciting opportunities for engagements with African American literary texts and artifacts?

• How do new developments in print culture studies and book history unsettle questions about black authorships, black literacies and access to print productions, and formations of African American literature of the past, present, and future?

• What's so special about "special collections" of African American textual and material archives, such as current or historic town or regional maps; tax schedules; vital records; and extant records kept by black teachers, preachers, entrepreneurs, painters, printers, publishers, and magazine and newspaper editors?

• Where do past and present black visual cultures—abolitionist logos, lost slave ads, broadsides, frontispiece portraits, daguerreotypes, cartoons, movie posters, mug shots, family portraits, celebrity photos, etc.—intersect with African American print cultures and book history?

• What questions concerning African American book history and print culture studies should we be asking right now?

• Where is black poetry in conversations about the production and dissemination of African American literature?

All essays should be between 6,000 and 9,000 words, including notes and works cited. Essays should be prepared according to the most recent edition of the MLA Style Manual. The author's name should not appear in the manuscript. Please also include a 250-word abstract with your submission. Essays under review at other journals or previously published in any form will not be considered for publication in MELUS. Please submit completed essays to Howard Rambsy II ( by Dec. 1, 2013.