Paradoxa

Paradoxa publishes articles on genre literature: science fiction, horror, mysteries, children's literature, romance, comic studies, the fantastic, best sellers, the occult, westerns, oral literature, and more.

Welcome to Paradoxa

Paradoxa publishes articles on genre literature: science fiction, horror, mysteries, children's literature, romance, comic studies, the fantastic, best sellers, the occult, westerns, oral literature, and more. Paradoxa invites submissions on all aspects of genre literature which make a significant and original contribution to the study of those genres.

Current Issue

Paradoxa, Volume 28, Global Weirding.

“This is a cool, charismatic, up to date, and innovative collection of writings and discussions of the perhaps unexpected but definite connection between weird literature, film, ecology, the Anthropocene, and climate change. It tackles these complex subjects in a way that feels fresh and interesting, without being dogmatic or preachy. In addition to all of this, the collection is, as any academic writings should be, erudite, insightful, diverse, and significant.” Berit Ellingsen, author of Not Dark Yet 2015), a collection of short stories, Beneath the Liquid Skin (2012), and Une Ville Vide (2013).

Paradoxa continues to intrigue, speculate, analyze, and challenge. The weird world just got weirder and we need all those things more than ever.” Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves (2014) and The Jane Austen Book Club (2004).

“This issue of Paradoxa is at turns surprising and unsettling, satisfying and very chewy. Gerry Canavan and Andrew Hageman have put together a timely primer for navigating our own bizarre moment in global history. The pieces in ‘Global Weirding’ form a kaleidoscope through which we can look at the narratives and mythologies swirling around this charged epoch, if to then step more carefully into the relentlessly oncoming future.” Christopher Schaberg, associate professor of English & Environmental Studies at Loyola University New Orleans, author of The End of Airports (2015).

“‘Global Weirding’ was a term invented in 2010 that tried to sidestep post-truth assumptions about ‘global warming,’ the kind of thing that got lunatic politicians carrying snowballs into senate hearings. Surely everyone could agree that the weather has got seriously weirder—unpredictable, chaotic, menacing. Gerry Canavan and Andrew Hageman have commissioned a bunch of smart people to cross-fertilize this idea with that other crucial weirdness of the 21st century, the increasing cultural centrality of ‘weird fiction,’ once an overlooked, interstitial mode of pulp writing but now ever more visible in literature and visual culture. We hear from China Miéville and Jeff VanderMeer, the transatlantic leaders of the New Weird, and Timothy Morton, leading ecocritic just now turning to reflect upon the resources of the weird. A vital and timely intervention into unfathomably strange times.” Roger Luckhurst, Birkbeck, University of London, author of Science Fiction (2005), The Trauma Question (2008), The Mummy's Curse: The True History of a Dark Fantasy (2012), and Zombies: A Cultural History (2015).

“A beautifully coherent and taut collection, ‘Global Weirding’ brings together leading and new voices in SF/F studies to examine the Weird in the era of climate change and unpredictable weather events. Interviews and an impressive set of essays open up productive lines of enquiry for this important cognitive framework. From uncanny futures of human extinction and the slow violence of hyperobjects, to weird gamification, from Lovecraft’s legacy on post-Pinochet contemporary Chilean literature, to the ecohorror of First Nations’ slipstream with their elk-like Cree monsters—this is a rich set of insights and essential reading on the Weird in the 21st century.” Caroline Edwards. Birkbeck, University of London, Founding and Commissioning Editor of the open access journal of 21st-century literary criticism, Alluvium, and Founder and Co-Director of the Open Library of Humanities (OLH).

Preview this issue

Issues in Preparation

Volume 29 Small Screen Fiction

Call for Papers (anticipated publication date: December, 2017)

Editors: Astrid Ensslin (University of Alberta, Canada); Paweł Frelik (Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, Lublin, Poland); Lisa Swanstrom (Florida-Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida, USA)

In the last few decades, digital technologies have dramatically reconfigured not only the circumstances of media production and dissemination, but also many of their cultural forms and conventions, including the roles of users, producers, authors, audiences, and readers. Arguably the most spectacular of these digital transformations have affected the large screens of cinema multiplexes and the increasingly large screens of home televisions, but other narrative forms have emerged on a smaller screens as well.
Today, with growing frequency, narratives are experienced on the smaller screens of laptops, tablets, and even mobile phones. These narratives often involve direct reader/viewer/player interaction, enabling highly idiosyncratic, individualized and unique narrative experiences. Some of these fictions are merely digitized or wikified versions of texts previously available in the codex form—their digital conversion affects some of the ways in which readers engage with them, but the basic structures of these narratives remain unchanged. Some others, however, have been written and designed (these two words often blur) specifically for these small screens. Their functionalities and affordances are not replicable in any other medial form, nor do they demonstrate an allegiance to any single pre-existing art form.
Paradoxa seeks articles for a special issue devoted to “Small Screen Fictions.” Both in-depth analyses of individual texts and more general, theoretical discussions are invited. The genres and media of interest include but are not limited to:

• DVD novels, such as Steve Tomasula’s TOC (2009);
• literary-narrative video games and ludic, gamelike fictions whose principal interest is in offering innovative storytelling experiences, such as Dear Esther (2012) and Device6 (2013);
• twitter and blog texts, such as Jennifer Egan’s “Black Box” (2012);
• collectively written, locative online texts, particularly those breaking narrative linearity, such as Hundekopf (2007), The LA Flood Project (2013) and The Silent History (2013);
• interactive graphic novels, such as Nam Le’s The Boat (2014);
• genre-bending, dialogic hybrids, such as Blast Theory’s Karen (2015);
• neo-hypertextual fictions enabled by user-friendly authoring software such as Twine;
• physically distributed narratives that make use of small screen spaces, not merely to create and display fictions, but also to navigate, negotiate, and interact with real-world spaces through geo-caching or other means, such as Ingress (2013), Cartegram (2014), and Call of the Wild (2015).

Similarly, possible approaches to such screen texts include but are not limited to:

• the changing cultural patterns and expectations of engagement with narrative;
• the reality and illusions of linearity and non-linearity;
• the shifting nature of public and private spectatorship;
• the role of touch and tactility, as well as other human senses in experiencing narratives;
• the blurring of the verbal and the visual, of fact and fiction, of reading and writing, of natural and artificial;
• the economic, social, and political contexts of authorship and readership of such texts;
• the implications of such narrative experiences for the meaning(s) and perceptions of fiction, genre and literature.

Abstracts of 500 words should be submitted by 15 August 2016 to the editors: Astrid Ensslin < ensslin@ualberta.ca>, Pawel Frelik < pawel.frelik@gmail.com> Lisa Swanstrom < swanstro@gmail.com>. Authors of selected abstracts will be notified by 30 September 2016. Full drafts (6,000 to 8,000 words) will be due by 31 December 2016.

Volume 30 Latin American Speculative Fiction

Call for Papers (anticipated publication date early 2018)

Editors: Debra Ann Castillo (debra.castillo@gmail.com) and Liliana Colanzi (lc566@cornell.edu)

Speculative fiction provides complex perspectives on the changes that technological advances produce in subject, societies, and cultures. It also provides novel perspectives from which to explore philosophical ideas, literary styles, and media formats. From Jorge Luis Borges, who remains central to discussions of philosophically-oriented speculative fiction, to such contemporary works as Martín Felipe Castagnet’s Los cuerpos del verano, Angélica Gorodischer’s Trafalgar: A Novel, Alberto Chimal’s La torre y el jardín, Rita Indiana’s La mucama de Omicunlé, Latin American writers have pushed the genre in innovative and intriguing directions.

This issue of Paradoxa will examine the role of speculative fiction in altering the debate over possible presents and futures in Latin America and the Latino/a United States. It will also explore how the digital era is reinventing the way we think about bodies and subjectivities.

We invite contributions that analyze the literary and graphic work that epitomizes speculative fiction in Latin America. Possible topics of interest include:

· tradition and rupture in Latin American speculative fiction;

· experiments in format, length, literary genres – the graphic novel, science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc;

· possible futures

· retrofuturism;

· imaginary times and alternative history;

· utopian and dystopian imagination;

· speculative landscapes: ecology, sustainability, ecological disasters, apocalyptic/postapocalyptic environments, extraterrestrial landscapes;

· possible bodies: disembodiment in the digital era, cyborgs, new technologies of care and childbearing, the body as landscape, monsters, extraterrestrials, posthumanism, the queer body;

· the digital subject: new forms of subjectivity and community in the internet, ethnicity in the digital era, cybernetic government;

· speculation and feminism;

· science and religion.

We invite proposals of up to 500 words for papers of 5000-9000 words. We also welcome proposals for micro-essays and creative contributions in non-standard formats, including image-based formats, graphic- and photo-essays. Proposals are due December 1, 2016 and contributors will be notified within 3 weeks if their abstract is accepted. Full papers will be due August 1, 2017; each paper will be subject to peer review before acceptance is final.