Voyages: Traversing the White Space

deadline for submissions: 
May 21, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
Pivot - Graduate Student Journal of York University
contact email: 

​​Call for Papers:

 Voyages: Traversing the White Space


Deadline: May 21, 2023, 11:59 pm EST


Pivot magazine would like to invite you all to share your work! We are so excited to share that the theme for our 2023 edition is Voyages: Traversing the White Space. 

As academics and writers, we are constantly faced with the intimidation of the yawning white space of the page. In Reflections on Concrete Poetry and Prose, Joe Bray argues, "It is as if the white space trumps the linguistic attempt to represent silence; it achieves what words cannot. Its dominance over language in the poem is also suggested by the way it dwarfs the text on the page, surrounding and diminishing it." 

White space then finds meaningful exploration in our creative works. In our identities, too, we are often forced to battle the hegemony of Western whiteness. Lisa Corrigan and Anjali Vats advocate that "Although, as Darrel Wanzer-Serrano reminds us, 'the overwhelming whiteness, both embodied and intellectually, of rhetorical studies is not new,' we must offer new and sustained scholarly attention to the way that racial investments structure protest cycles within the communication field and the possibilities that exist for effectively resisting them." Contemporary critical work, in response, has adopted lenses of inclusivity and diversity to fight against the whiteness of academia and publishing.

We are looking for works that approach white space in infinite ways. Whether it be a poem experimenting with white space as a stylistic technique, a paper displaying deep racial awareness, or even discussions on the process of staking a claim on the blank space of the page in our work, we encourage any and all interpretations.


Questions to Consider:

  • How does the implementation of white space in creative and critical works contribute to the way we understand silences and other contextual reverberations?

  • How does the whiteness of the institutions we exist in shape our criticisms as sites of cultural representation and cultural inscription?

  • How is the whiteness of space represented in tales of immigration or voyages and travel literature?

  • How do artists confront the intimidation of the blank white page and continue to dare to keep creating?


The idea of exploring white space can be taken up either in an academic paper or through a creative endeavor. Additionally, we are accepting reviews, interviews, and podcasts that discuss an array of mediums (books, film, visual art, events) following the theme of somatic cartography.


Ideas that may be addressed by submissions include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Creative writing that uses white space as an experimental tool

  • Photography and visual art that plays with colours and white space

  • Critical articles examining the use of white space in literary texts

  • Critical and creative works reflecting on the racial implications of various literary texts

  • Immigrant literature of any sort

  • Reflections and conversations surrounding the act of filling up the white space of a page

  • Representations and recreations of white space (in one or more of its connotations)

  • Representations and recreations of voyages, immigration, and travel literature

  • Representations and recreations of race, diversity, and inclusion

  • Representations and recreations of the process of creating art and written work


We accept both creative and critical submissions responding to the theme. In the past, we have accepted works of criticism, visual art, fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and more, so don't let genre or form restrict you!


Submissions are to be made at this link by April 1st, 2023:


Below are some guidelines for submissions. For additional information, parse through our website at:


Critical Articles: Critical articles should be between 2500-3000 words. These articles are expected to be formatted and cited in MLA format and will undergo a peer-review process. Please include an abstract with your submission.

Reviews: This can include reviews of books, films, art exhibits, public events, food and drink, and more. So long as the review connects in some way to the subject of Pivot's 2023 issue. The reviews should be between 700-3000 words. 

Poetry: Please submit between 1-3 pages of poetry. Whether the pages consist of one long poem or three separate poems does not matter so long as the entry fits within the page limits. 

Literary Non-Fiction: Works of literary non-fiction should be between 700-3000 words. These can include personal stories, essays, etc. 

Fiction/Short Stories: Short stories should be between 700-3000 words. 


Video Media: Please submit a proposal of about 300 words (you can only write "see attached proposal" for the abstract portion of the submission). Once you have been notified that your proposal has been approved, you can upload a video up to 10 minutes in length. Videos can include anything from interviews, short documentaries, vlogs, literature readings, and acting performances. Please also include a 1-2 sentence description of the video within the abstract section. 

Visual Art: Please submit a digital file with your visual art here. We accept photography, graphic design, paintings, and drawings, as well as photos of sculpture or performance art. In the abstract section, please include a short description or statement to accompany your work.

In case of any questions or concerns, please reach out to us at We look forward to engaging with your work, and thank you so much for your willingness to share.



Best Regards, 

Pivot Team