Edited Collection on Masculinity and Gender in Sons of Anarchy

deadline for submissions: 
November 1, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
Susan Fanetti/California State University, Sacramento
contact email: 


CFP: Edited Collection on Masculinity and Gender in Sons of Anarchy

Editor: Susan Fanetti, California State University, Sacramento


Through its seven-season run, from 2008-2014, Sons of Anarchy celebrated and contemplated the world of outlaw bikers and became a cultural phenomenon in its own right. Creator and showrunner Kurt Sutter’s modern-day retelling of Hamlet became and continues to be the highest-rated show in FX’s network history, and for that achievement, Sutter was, in later seasons, granted unprecedented leeway to tell his story in his way.


The show is raw, violent, sexual, and macho, situated in a world with specific and deeply entrenched codes. It is a world where gender is rigidly binary, where women are marked as the property of their men and their club, and where all lines of culture and identity are distinctly drawn boundaries.


The real-life world of outlaw bikers conforms to these norms, and Sutter’s fictional representation does as well. But Sutter instantiates these boundaries with one hand and challenges them with the other, creating a complex and often problematic text that might be exploitative and appropriative in one moment and transformative and transgressive the next.


Sons of Anarchy is a fertile field for cultural study. This collection will focus specifically on questions of gender and masculinity. Chapters might focus these questions on the show’s narrative, or on its depictions of its real-world analogue. They might focus on analysis of particular characters or relationships (e.g., the dynamic between Gemma and Tara, or the character of Venus Van Dam and/or her relationship with Tig, the brotherhood dynamic of the club, etc.). They might consider the gendered characteristics of the show’s fandom. Or any other scholarly consideration on the topic of gender and masculinity in Sons of Anarchy. Analyses using a lens of culture or gender theory are of course welcome.


Please send abstracts of 300-400 words for chapters of approximately 6000 words, plus a short biography, to sfanetti@csus.edu by 1 November 2016. First drafts of chapters will be due 1 March 2017. A publisher has expressed interest in this project, and a publication date of 2018 is likely.