Metamodernist Fiction: Literary Manifestations of the Ongoing Cultural Shift

deadline for submissions: 
March 1, 2024
full name / name of organization: 
Magdalena Sawa and Joanna Klara Teske
contact email: 

Call for Papers for Peer-Reviewed Edited Volume



Metamodernist Fiction: Literary Manifestations

of the Ongoing Cultural Shift


edited by Magdalena Sawa and Joanna Klara Teske



Recent years have witnesses an impressive expansion of the debate on metamodernism and its place in contemporary culture, which started for good after Robin van den Akker and Timotheus Vermeulen published in 2010 their “Notes on Metamodernism”. Among the most important publications up to date we can list Irmtraud Huber’s Literature after Postmodernism: Reconstructive Fantasies (2014),Supplanting the Postmodern: An Anthology of Writings on the Arts and Culture of the Early 21st Century (2015) edited by David Rudrum and Nicholas Stavris, Wolfgang Funk's The Literature of Reconstruction: Authentic Fiction in the New Millenium (2016), Metamodernism. Historicity, Affect, and Depth After Postmodernism (2017) edited by Robin Van den Akker, Alison Gibbons and Timotheus Vermeulen,New Directions in Philosophy and Literature (2019) edited by David Rudrum, Ridvan Askin and Frieda Beckman or Josh Toth’s The Passing of Postmodernism (2010) or Truth and Metafiction (2020). Much discussion is conducted on websites, podcasts and youtube channels, which often host important theoreticians of metamodernism. Apart from the vitality of the cultural trend, what is striking is the diversity of its interpretations. Various authors come up with quite different construals of the phenomenon, indeed, at times the same authors over the years substantially modify their interpretation.


Metamodernism is not simply about literature. Metamodernist tendencies have been identified in visual arts, music, architecture, but also in social life and politics. As regards English-language fiction, there are authors who have already been identified as metamodernist – Jennifer Egan, Jonathan Franzen, David Foster Wallace, Ali Smith, Elif Batuman or Dave Eggers. Still, arguably, if metamodernism has replaced postmodernism as the currently dominant aesthetics, we might expect that in one way or another, the metamodernist convention will be manifest in the works of many other authors, who have not yet been identified as metamodernist.


We would like to collect research papers combining reflection on various models/conceptualizations of metamodernism with analyses of contemporary (21st century) English-language fiction. We hope the resulting collection might contribute to our understanding of the change that is currently at work in our experience and conceptualization of ourselves and the world in which we live.


We welcome submissions offering analyses and interpretations of English-language 21st c. novels and shorter fiction that would consider their metamodernist character, examining any of the following issues but by no means limited to them:

− moral considerations in metamodernist fiction,

− spiritual experience in metamodernist fiction, the status of supernatural phenomena in metamodernist texts, metamodernism and postsecularism, metamodernism and rationality,

− the reconstructive work of the metamodernist reader,

− metamodernist response to ecological crisis, the digitalisation of social life, current political crises; metamodernist social commitment,

− metamodernist search for life’s meaning,

− the shape of metamodernist fiction (its use of metafiction, irony, playful language, intertextuality etc.),

− metamodernist dialogue with postmodernism and pre-postmodern movements,

− the complex relationship between metamodernism and other contemporary artistic and cultural movements such as transmodernity, digimodernism, performatism, postsecularity,

− metamodernist view on humans (self, individual, subjectivity) and human relations with each other and with non-human beings,

− metamodernist focus on experience (as contrasted with abstract speculations),

− metamodernist self-reflexivity (how it differs from postmodern self-reflexivity),

− metamodernist sensibility – the sense of hope, optimism, enthusiasm, “as if” engagement, sincerity, authenticity.


Please send your questions and proposals (250-word abstracts) to and by March 1, 2024. Notifications of acceptance will be sent by April 01, 2024. Final papers will be expected by September 31, 2024. We hope to be able to publish the collection in a first-rate academic publishing house by the end of 2025.

We would like to ask the authors to follow the MLA stylesheet (8th edition) and use British English spelling. Please attach a brief biographical note to your abstract.


Magdalena Sawa, Assistant Professor of Literary Studies

Joanna Klara Teske, Associate Professor of Literary Studies


Institute of Literary Studies

John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin

Al. Racławickie 14

20-950 Lublin