Call for Chapter Proposals- African-American Arts: Activism & Aesthetics

deadline for submissions: 
November 9, 2016
full name / name of organization: 
The Griot Project Book Series
contact email: 

Call for Chapter Proposals

The Griot Project Book Series- Series Editor, Carmen Gillespie


African-American Arts: Activism & Aesthetics


Editor: Sharrell D. Luckett

Publication projected for summer of 2017


Signaling such recent activist and aesthetic concepts in the work of Kara Walker, Roxane Gay, BLM, Solange, and Kendrick Lamar, and marking the exit of the Obama Administration, and the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, this book explores and investigates the role of African American arts in shaping the future, and further informing new directions we might take in honoring and protecting the success of African Americans in the U.S. The collection of chapters in African-American Arts: Activism and Aesthetics will engage readers in critical conversations by activists, scholars, and artists reflecting on the legacies of African-American activism as an element of artistic practice, particularly as they concern artistic expression and racism and the intersections of creative processes with aesthetic, economic, sociological, and psychological inequalities.

What are the connections between African American arts, the work of social justice, and creative processes? If we conceive of the arts as part of the legacy of Black activism in the United States, how can we use that construct to inform our understanding of the complicated intersections of African-American activism(s) and aesthetics?

We invite scholars, activists, artists, and others to submit abstracts engaging the questions and concerns of this book project as they intersect with African-American film, theatre, dance, visual art, music, literature, performance and other art forms from disciplinary, multidisciplinary, and/or interdisciplinary perspectives.

Abstract Guidelines:


Interested contributors must submit a 300-400 word abstract to Sharrell D. Luckett at by November 9, 2016. Authors selected for this anthology will be notified by late November. Final Papers of 6000-8000 words are due Feb. 1, 2017.


Abstracts should include the following:


  • A clear and concise description of your chapter focus and key ideas/contexts/theories that frame your argument and/or content.
  • A brief bio of the contributing author (including name, contact info, and affiliation)


Possible topics for papers include but are not limited to:

  • Futurity, Black Activism & the arts
  • The Black Arts Movement of the 1950s
  • Slam poetry and social justice
  • New Black Aesthetic(s)
  • Activism & Hip Hop Theatre
  • Improvisation
  • Histories of Black Arts Movements
  • Hip hop and political activism
  • Afrofuturism as a social justice project
  • Performance, Dance, and/or Movement and politics
  • African-American aesthetics
  • Author as public intellectual

as well as the work of and questions raised by the creative productions of artists, including but not limited to:

Erika Alexander, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, Debbie Allen, Erykah Badu, Radcliffe Bailey, James Baldwin, Harry Belafonte, Gwendolyn Brooks, Octavia Butler, Ta-Nehisi Coates, John Coltrane, Misty Copeland, Julie Dash, Miles Davis, Jimmy Greene, Zora Neale Hurston, Samuel L. Jackson, Bill T. Jones, Jacob Lawrence, Spike Lee, Kasi Lemmons, Audre Lorde, Manning Marable, Wynton Marsalis, E. Ethelbert Miller, Toni Morrison, Gordon Parks, Prince, Faith Ringgold, Nina Simone, Anna Deavere Smith, Esperanza Spalding, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Alice Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Phillis Wheatley, and August Wilson

This anthology is a part of The Griot Project Book Series; Series Editor, Carmen Gillespie. The anthology will be edited by Sharrell D. Luckett.  We welcome any inquires prior to submission of abstracts. Thank you in advance for your submission.


Abstract Deadline: Wednesday, Nov. 9th, 2016

Final papers of 6000-8000 words due: Feb. 1, 2017

The Griot Project Book Series

In Media Res, ed. James Braxton Peterson

Venus of Khala-Kanti by Angele Kingue

Toni Morrison: Forty Years in The Clearing, ed. Carmen Gillespie

Catastrophic Bliss by Myronn Hardy

Post-Racial America?: An Interdisciplinary Study, eds. Vincent Stephens & Anthony Stewart