'Melancholia' - The Polish Journal of Aesthetics Vol. 66 (3) 2022

deadline for submissions: 
July 31, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
The Polish Journal of Aesthetics
contact email: 

Call for Papers




Volume 66 (3/2022)


Submission deadline EXTENDED: July 31, 2022



Anna Wysowska (Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland),

Krzysztof Zanussi  (director, screenwriter and professor of cinematic arts)



Melancholy is a phenomenon that escapes definition, making melancholy challenging to assign to a specific field of research. The phenomenon can be analyzed in medical, philosophical, and anthropological terms and is thematically explored by some artists in their creative work.

Since the Middle Ages, melancholy has been identified with acedia, an illness of the soul rather than the body. The ancients would use this term to describe a physical human disposition associated with an excess of black bile in the body. Psychoanalysis linked melancholy to bereavement, in which a case of the condition had its direct cause, as long as the object of loss could be identified.

Modern psychology introduced the notion of depression, a mental disorder that poses a severe threat to the afflicted and requires treatment instead of reflection. In this approach, melancholia qua disease moves away from melancholy as an aesthetic category. While present in existential thought, the impassable separateness of the subject from everything that is not themselves, angoisse or Weltschmerz, realities difficult or even impossible to grasp conceptually, find their expression in art, or myth—which allows us to look for the links between a state of existential emptiness and melancholy.

Melancholy is a sense of loss, longing, inaction, apprehension, and a kind of love of suffering. Along with the sense of strangeness that stems from the present, the mechanism for remembering loss can manifest as the feeling of longing after a lived, subjective experience and after feeling a desire for a nonexistent and unexperienced past.

To what extent can melancholy represent an artistic mannerism, specific stimuli for creative possibilities, and to what extent does it represent a threat to the individual human being and the development of culture? Does melancholy or its equivalent occur in the traditions of other cultures? What is it, how does it arise? Melancholy qua a personal experience, a cultural phenomenon, a symbol, a threat to civilization, or an individual illness; this is just a handful of possible explanations. Leaving the author free to choose how to reflect on the subject, we invite researchers to take it up again in this upcoming volume of The Polish Journal of Aesthetics.

Author Guidelines:

We ask Authors to read our guidelines posted under the tab “For Authors” (https://pjaesthetics.uj.edu.pl/for-authors) as well as to double-check the completeness of each submission (please do not forget to collectively submit: the abstract, keywords, bibliography, and a biographical note about the author) before submitting.

Only complete submissions sent through the submissions page will be accepted—submission page: https://pjaesthetics.uj.edu.pl/en_GB/wyslij-tekst.

All submitted articles are subject to double-blind reviews. Articles published in The Polish Journal of Aesthetics are assigned DOI numbers. Please do not hesitate to contact us via email: pjaestheticsuj@gmail.com.

About the Journal:

The Polish Journal of Aesthetics is highly regarded as an international forum for debate in aesthetics and the philosophy of art. The journal is published to promote the study and discuss philosophical questions about aesthetic experience and the arts. The Journal is open to different philosophical and artistic orientations, and it publishes lively and thoughtful articles on a broad range of topics from art, aesthetics, the philosophy of art, popular culture, and new technologies.The journal is a quarterly periodical published in March, June, September, and December by the Institute of Philosophy at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland.

Please visit our website at https://pjaesthetics.uj.edu.pl/en_GB/

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