Completed Chapters: Film Adaptations about Comic Book Characters or Superheroes

deadline for submissions: 
February 14, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Ashley Carranza/College of Southern Nevada

Call for Essays: Film adaptations of comic book characters/comic franchises/superheroes between the years of 1998-2020

For the book: Feeding Cultural Fear: Essays on Films During a Time of Transition, 1998-2020 


I am looking for a completed chapter for an academic book that aims to examine the manifestation of collective societal fears in film. This collection will cover films specifically from the time period of 1998-2020. This collection is under contract with McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers and will be released in 2020.


The past few decades proved themselves very tumultuous-- constant snowballing from one issue to the next left America with a sense of constant impending doom. From Y2K, terrorism, xenophobia, rapid technological advancements, the economy crash, changes in political climates, racism, sexism, challenges to heteronormative standpoints, homeland tension, to anxiety surrounding personal liberties, an undercurrent of fear lurked.


Feeding Cultural Fear: Essays on Films During a Time of Transition, 1998-2020  proposes to explore and analyze collective cultural fears and the ways in which specific films/film franchises speak to or manifest these fears. Some films are blatant, while others may require more of a metaphoric reflection. *Chapters regarding other genres have already been selected and submitted; I am only looking for chapters about comic adaptations at this time.


Successful chapters will examine a film or films about a comic book character(s), addressing the cultural issues surrounding the time period/events, and the film’s function during this time. Preferentially, chapters should also explore how these films still hold relevance today as America has undergone social, economical, political, and technological transitions. Comparative reflections of numerous films from 1998 to the present and the ways in which the narratives speak to one another are particularly advised. Selected essays will need to be 5,000-6,000 words in length.


An example of the dynamics this collection aims to explore is Planet of the Apes. In many cases, the fears expressed in a specific time period can mirror fears in different cultural climates. For example, the revival of the Planet of the Apes franchise demonstrates the ways in which the film's message holds true over the span of decades. The films are still relevant even when rebooted in 2001 because the fears expressed can become a personal effect for the audience. When released in the 1970s, the franchise spoke to a range of fears from technology and racism to the Cold War, but its strong following in today's society shows how these fears are still relevant and prevalent, (not literally the Cold War, but similar tensions, etc.)  The various Ape films have been incredibly popular and speak to audiences numerous times between 2001 through 2020 when another will be released. Mass consumption demonstrates the flexibility of these narratives in different cultural situations. These films scratch subconscious itches for audience members. Some films transcend the turn of the millenium and carry the brunt of issues still relevant in today’s society, offering numerous avenues for interpretation and analysis for scholars and film aficionados from all walks of life. 


Proposals should delve into discourse that bridges what this film reveals about society, or how it fulfills subconscious urges for the audience, while reflecting on time periods as is appropriate for a text that revisits an older film.


 Please submit your completed essay (MLA format with endnotes and works cited page--no footnotes) with a 300 word proposal and an 80 words or less bio to: by February 14, 2020.                

Please share this CFP with any and all you believe might be interested.  Thank you.