UPDATE: CFP For Action Figure Essay Collection Under Contract With McFarland

full name / name of organization: 
Jonathan Alexandratos/Queensborough Community College (CUNY)
contact email: 

I am editing a collection of academic essays on action figures for McFarland Publishers. The first manuscript deadline is September of this year, and we could use a couple more essays in the collection. (We have about 8 so far; I'm looking to up that to 10-11.) Action Figure Studies is a subdiscipline of Pop Culture Studies in which scholars study the relationship between action figures and gender, culture, politics, religion, body representation, and/or any other subject of academic study.

The definition of an "action figure" is broad, but includes toys that are approximately 3.75-12 inches tall and are meant to represent a specific character intended for play or collectability. While most action figures are meant for child consumers, plenty of action figures are designed for the adult collector, as well. Action figures from multiple eras are considered as subjects for study. Action figures are traditionally geared toward a specific gender, though action figures that are not are beginning to gain traction.

If you would like to contribute an essay to this collection, please email me (jsalexan@gmail.com) an abstract of approximately 200 words by March 15, 2016. If accepted, a first draft of your essay would be due by July 31, 2016.

Essays may analyze action figures from virtually any angle. A few possibilities are: the influence of action figures on culture, child development through action figure play, gender and action figures, action figures in a historical context, and the value of action figure accessories. We accept a wide variety of action figure analyses beyond the traditional looks at GI Joes, Transformers, Barbies, and Star Wars figures. Some non-traditional (but still okay!) possibilities are: Lego minifigures, Mii World playsets, and religious figurines.

A little about me: I am a professor at Queensborough Community College in New York City, and co-run Denver Comic Con's Page 23 literary conference, in which scholars present papers on comic book and pop culture scholarship. My interests include the place of comic books in literary studies and in the classroom (using comics to teach ESL students), representations of gender through action figures, and narratives that are represented in both comic books and theatre.