Animal Heroes, Villains and Others: the Narrative Functions of Strange and Familiar Creatures in Film and Television

deadline for submissions: 
July 15, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
Dr. Karin Beeler and Dr. Stan Beeler
contact email: 

CALL FOR CHAPTERS /CFP for Edited Volume


Animal Heroes, Villains and Others: the Narrative Functions of Strange and Familiar Creatures in Film and Television


Deadline for Submission of Proposals: July 15, 2021


Name: Dr. Karin Beeler and Dr. Stan Beeler


Contact emails: and


We invite chapter proposals (300-500 words) for a volume of essays under contract with Lexington Books. This edited collection will examine how animal characters in film and television serve as protagonists, antagonists, or anti-heroes fulfilling various narrative functions. Essays should consider how representations of animal characters in different narrative contexts reflect societal attitudes towards animals as informed by the intersectionality of any of the following: culture, race, gender, sexuality, social class, disability. This edited collection will also address how recent representations deviate from more conventional character types and analyze the role of setting as well as historical and social contexts in shaping these representations. Only unpublished essays will be considered.


Proposals that engage with the intersectionality of race, gender, sexuality, social class, disability or systems of social privilege and disadvantage as applied to the following topics are welcome:


  • animal heroes, villains, or anti-heroes
  • animal characters with some anthropomorphized traits
  • animal/human hybrid characters (e.g hybrid physical appearance; animal form with human voiceovers/animal sounds)
  • animal characters that challenge the narrative conventions of various genres (e.g. fantasy, science fiction, horror, romance, comedy, animated genres)
  •  animal characters in specific geographical settings or historical contexts
  • cinematography/cinematic space, televisual techniques, audio and special effects that shape the representations of animals and their narrative/symbolic function
  •  companion/performance/working/laboratory animal characters, stray/street animals, domestic/farm animals, and wild animal characters in narrative film and television
  • other topics that engage with the focus of this collection


Films or television shows may include, but are not limited to the following:


The Littlest Hobo

A Street Cat Named Bob


Kulipari: An Army of Frogs


King Kong

Racing Stripes

BoJack Horseman

A Dog’s Journey

White God


Guardians of the Galaxy


Sweet Tooth


Dolphin Tale

Penguin Bloom

War Horse

Teen Wolf 


Proposal submission deadline: July 15, 2021


Essays selected for the volume will be due November 1, 2021 (5500-8000 words including notes and bibliography).


Revised papers due: February 1, 2022.


Please send submissions (300-500 word proposals and a 150 word bio) by July 15, 2021 to and  as word attachments with the subject header “Animal Characters” in the email.  Inquiries are welcome.