Frontiers at 50: The Past, Present, and Future of Feminist Knowledge Production
Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies was founded in Boulder, Colorado, in 1975 and was housed in the Women's Studies department at the University of Colorado-Boulder. Frontiers began as a volunteer-based organization to bridge academic and community-based feminist knowledge and corresponded with a local movement among students, faculty, and community members to develop a women's studies program at the University of Colorado. Using a range of informal tactics, the Frontiers editorial collective established itself as "an incorporated legal nonentity," a strategic move aimed at circumventing the heteropatriarchal administrative tactics that had hindered the formation of women's studies programs in universities across the U.S. and the globe. Based on a consensus model and an inclusive vision, the Frontiers Editorial Collective aimed to publish readable and substantive articles and creative works that emphasized the significance of women in the West, especially the contributions of indigenous women and women of color.
Since its founding, the Journal has made significant contributions to the study of women, gender, and sexuality, with noteworthy contributions to Western women’s history, multiracial feminisms, global cinema, feminist anthropology, and women’s literature, to name a few. Following its travels across the decades to various universities, its subsequent publication and distribution by the University of Nebraska Press, as well as its global circulation through digital technologies, Frontiers continues to make an impact on feminist knowledge production while reflecting the various shifts in feminist theory, methodology, politics, and publication.The Frontiers editorial collective invites scholarly and creative contributions to a special issue that takes the Journal’s 50th anniversary as a point of departure for a broader examination of the production, dissemination, circulation, and institutionalization of (academic) feminist knowledge production since the 1970s.
What does the history of Frontiers tell us about the role of academic journals in the broader history of feminism? What possibilities and limitations emerge when we view academic feminist journals as historical records of how feminism and feminist theory, methodology, and praxis have been defined and redefined across the decades? What might academic feminist journals and other feminist publications tell us about the shifts in the production, dissemination, and circulation of feminist knowledge across the decades? What infrastructures facilitated and continue to promote the longevity of Frontiers and its sibling publications? What productive tensions emerge when we assess the current circulation of feminist journals like Frontiers against its origins in social movements for women’s studies in the university and its original aims of bridging community-based and academic knowledge? We welcome article-length or short scholarly essays reflecting on these questions.
Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:
- Archiving, recovering, and curating histories and material cultures of academic feminism
- New directions in the study of “frontiers” in the 21st century
- Precarity, austerity, catastrophe, and the Future of feminist art, media, and Publishing
- Academic feminist journals and critical university studies
- The local, national, and global circulation of feminist (academic and popular) publications
- Critical regionalism as an approach to the study of feminism, feminist print culture, publishing, and collective practice
- Digitizing feminisms, particularly the shift from print culture to digital formats in academic feminist publishing
- Feminist non-profits and alternative models of feminist institutionalization
- New directions in regional histories of women, gender, and sexuality, especially comparative race and ethnic studies, transnational, and environmental approaches
- The institutional impact of feminist journals and Publications
- The significance of feminist art and creative writing to academic publishing/significance of scholarly publishing to feminist art and creative writing
- Book and curriculum bans and political attacks on critical race theory, ethnic studies, and feminist, gender, and sexuality studies
Scholarly essays should not exceed 12,000 words, including notes and references, with an abstract of no more than 250 words. All article manuscripts, poetry, essays, and multi-media submissions must be submitted through Frontiers’ editorial manager. All submissions will be subject to external review. Citations should follow the Chicago Manual of Style, 17thedition, with “humanities style” endnotes. For more details please see Frontiers’ submission guidelines.
Please submit all works through our online editorial manager and briefly state that your submission is to be considered for the special issue.