ROAM - Representations of Home creative journal

deadline for submissions: 
August 31, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
University of Lisbon Centre for English Studies

As a result of the pandemic, the RHOME 2020 Conference on Dislocation (22-23 October 2020) has been postponed. However, the good news is RHOME will launch the first issue of, its new creative journal, ROAM, later this year.

Now more than ever, in this time of social distancing and confinement, RHOME sees the need to continue its focus on the theme, the experience and the actuality of home, the place and abode that looms so large these days in the lives of everyone on the planet.

Our homes are being lived as never before, in different ways, as safe havens, sites of cosy domestic calm, or alternatively as places of containment, economic deprivation, even incarceration or violence. Many of us are separated from loved ones or deprived of our social gatherings and routines. We are also being challenged, being given time usually spent elsewhere to pass in our homes, to rediscover what our homes hold, explore new domestic skills, neglected hobbies, to sift and sort and to reassess our daily lives, what it is that makes up our selves, our values, and to recalibrate the interior and the exterior. This includes our broader social obligations, including to the less privileged and most threatened, the elderly, the disabled, the homeless in our home communities and abroad.  While social distancing has imposed severe economic challenges on communities, travel restrictions have created new opportunities, a breathing place for nature and the environment, and re-evaluation of its place in our lives.

Our daily lives, with their humdrum of chores and challenges, are inspired by thought, creativity and the reinvention of forms, as evident in the social media. Randall Jarrell has written how poetry issues from “the dailiness of life,” (1955) and John Burnside how, at times of profound reassessment, it is a kind of “scavenging” (2018, 101) from our lives lived, in Rilke’s “here and below.”

In the spirit of our creative session in RHOME 2017, and in the light of these challenging new times, RHOME invites past and future participants to submit creative proposals inspired by home as it is being experienced in these days. The following themes might be addressed:

  • home and seclusion, haven, safety
  • home and containment, separation and exile
  • home and self, affect, self-development
  • home and community, egotism and altruism
  • home and nature, the environment
  • home and the body, health, illness, isolation

Creative pieces can be in the form of unpublished poems, short fiction, memoir, essay, photos or film. Proposals should be brief: prose should not exceed 1000 words, poetry ca. 25 lines (maximum 3 poems), film (5-10 minutes) and photos (maximum 3, high resolution, at least 2000 pix). Authors are welcome to record readings of their written work to be available on-line.

As part of the ongoing RHOME project, submissions will be considered for publication in RHOME’s on-line creative journal ROAM to be issued in Autumn 2020.

Submissions along with a bionote of 50 words should be sent to Representations of Home project by 31/08/2020 with a subject heading “ROAM 2020 Creative submissions”. Notification of acceptance will be sent out by 30/09/2020.