Special Edition: Monsters and the Monstrous

deadline for submissions: 
September 30, 2024
full name / name of organization: 
Journal of Popular Culture


Call for Papers:  Special Edition Monsters and the Monstrous

Submission Deadline: November 30, 2024

Email Proposals To: MonsterStudiesPCA@gmail.com

The Journal of Popular Culture is soliciting article proposals for the special edition, “Monsters and the Monstrous,” which will explore the tremendous growth and wide-ranging appeal of monsters and the monstrous throughout global popular culture. The proposals should emphasize how cultures create ideas of monstrous bodies and utilize monsters as allegories for all manner of identities, issues, and socio-cultural experiences. We envision that this edition will serve as an interdisciplinary catalyst, welcoming and encouraging further scholarship in this field.

Recognizing the broad definition of the term monster, we welcome topics ranging from the inhabitants of Sesame Street to medieval studies to medical oddities. The label of monster has often been invoked to separate the “natural” from the “unnatural” and the acceptable from the socially unacceptable. Whether referring to mythological creatures, the Victorian creations that have become standards through Universal film adaptations, or as shorthand to denigrate othered peoples, the monster has no shortage of applications and, sometimes, reevaluations.

Potential paper topics could include:

  • Monsters and the Marginalized (i.e., race, gender, ethnicity, sexualities, (dis)abilities, national origin)
  • Monsters queering societal norms and the monster as Other
  • Monsters and consent on screen and page
  • The Non-Western Monster (i.e. Black, Asian, Latino/a/x, African, Aboriginal)
  • Monsters on television
  • Legacy Cinematic Monsters
  • Monstrous Consumption, Merchandizing, and Other Capitalistic Adventures
  • Monstrous Cultures and Contexts (i.e. monster RPGs or other gaming universes, fan studies, graphic novels, Tik Tok & other social media platforms)
  • Genre Monsters (i.e. Gothic Horror, Urban Fantasy, Romance, Steampunk, Early Readers, Children’s Picture Books, Young Adult, Erotica, Comedy)
  • Historic and contemporary monstrous locations and geographies (i.e. cemeteries, castles, cities)
  • Freakshows and oddities
  • Monsters in the classroom


If you are interested in contributing to this special issue, please send a 300-word abstract to the editors U. Melissa Anyiwo, David Hansen, Amanda Jo Hobson, Colleen Karn, and Lisa Nevarez at colleen@pcaaca.org by September 30, 2024. Authors will be notified in early October 2024, whether they should submit a full version of their article for initial review. Full-length articles of 5500-7500 words including sources will be due by June 1, 2025, to editors for review, and final edited articles will be due to Journal of Popular Culture by November 1, 2025. Final decisions about the publication of articles are subject to the Journal of Popular Culture’s standard peer-review process. We particularly welcome scholars of diverse identities, races, and genders, whose work examines monsters and monstrous bodies from global perspectives and non-normative experiences.

The Journal of Popular Culture (TJPC) is a peer-reviewed journal and the official publication of the Popular Culture Association. https://journalofpopularculture.com/