Do You Believe in Magic?: The Narrative Construction of Magical Worlds, Creatures, and Characters

deadline for submissions: 
March 31, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Museum of Science Fiction/Escape Velocity Conference

The Museum of Science Fiction is accepting 250 word proposals for 15-20 minute papers to be presented at this year’s Escape Velocity Conference in National Harbor Maryland, May 25th – 27th, 2018.

As is often the case in the examination of the mainstream literary cannon, works incorporating “traditional” magic, Afro-diasporic voodoo and Santeria, and other mystical cosmologies are frequently dismissed as non-literature in an increasingly secular and data-driven world. But by violating the laws of empirical reality, magical narratives challenge the preferred Western emphasis on science to make room for cultural, religious, and social practices inexplicable in scientific terms.

For this year’s Escape Velocity Conference, we are seeking proposals that explore literary, cinematic, and animated representations of magic and how they operate as disruptive narrative tools which challenge the supremacy of Western rationalism over other epistemologies and ontological realities. Possible examples might include Harry Potter, The Magicians, LOTR, Narnia, Earthsea, Eragon, Fullmetal Alchemist, Heir Chronicles, Seven Realms, and The Broken Earth Trilogy, just to name a few.

Preference will be given to proposals addressing literary works as their primary or secondary source of inquiry, but submissions regarding all types of media (TV, film, and anime included) are more than welcome.


Conference: May 25th – 27th, 2018

Deadline for proposals: March 31st, 2018