Edited Anthology - The Heroine's Tale: Reimagining The Female Hero's Journey in the New Millennium 

deadline for submissions: 
February 1, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Caroline Smith
contact email: 

We are seeking proposals for chapters for a new edited collection titled “The Heroine's Tale: Reimagining The Female Hero's Journey in the New Millennium.” This collection considers the role of the contemporary heroine, aiming to take stock of existing conversations and debates related to cultural and creative representations of heroines and heroinism and providing the basis for new directions of inquiry.


The past two decades have seen landmark moments for women that likewise reflect a nuanced and often-fractured notion of what it means to be a heroine in the new millennium. From female-centered shows such as Showtime’s SMILF and the Amazon original I Love Dick, to Time’s decision to name “the silence breakers” its 2017 “Person of the Year,” the past ten years reflect an increased presence of women both in front of and behind the camera, challenging the patriarchal norms present in Hollywood. Such challenges are evident in a shift reflected in popular culture’s (re)depictions of independent and iconic female characters and personages on both the small and big screen (e.g., A Handmaid’s Tale, Scandal, Wonder Woman, Hidden Figures, etc.).


This book will survey the changing role of the heroine in popular culture, discuss how representations of heroinism have changed and remained the same in the wake of significant feminist benchmarks, and explore how conceptions of the heroine have been impacted by processes of adaptation and transmediation.


Possible topics might include (but are not limited to):

  • Historical understandings of heroines and heroinism
  • Heroine character types (e.g., mothers, teachers, advocates, professionals, entrepreneurs)
  • Identity politics in female-centered texts (e.g. Orange Is the New Black, Insecure)
  • Adaptations of heroines in any medium (e.g., film, novel, graphic novel, illustration, fan fiction, gaming)
  • Figurative adaptations of heroines (e.g., female anti-hero, female serial killer)
  • Intertextual heroines (e.g., Gossip Girl and The Age of Innocence, Sex and the City and Girls)
  • Changing trends in representing heroines and heroinism in response to social and political impetus


Contributor guidelines:

  • Paper proposal (300-500 words)
  • Brief biography of each author/coauthor (50-80 words)
  • Initial paper submission (if abstract is approved) should be roughly 3000-4500 words and should be emailed as a MS Word document.


Deadlines: February 1, 2019 (for proposal) September 1, 2019 (for essay)



Please submit proposals and any questions to heroines2019@gmail.com


You may also contact the editors directly. Please include “The Heroine's Tale Collection” in the subject line:


Arielle Bernstein

Professional Lecturer, Writing Studies Program in the Department of Literature

American University



Kate Newell

Professor of English, Liberal Arts Department

Savannah College of Art and Design



Caroline J. Smith

Associate Professor, University Writing Program

George Washington University