Call for Publications: Verge 5.2 (Forgetting Wars)

Akash Belsare's picture

CFP Issue 5.2 (Forgetting Wars)

Edited by Tina Chen (Penn State), Josephine Park (UPenn), and We Jung Yi (Penn State)

Historian Bruce Cumings notes that the Korean War was first branded the Forgotten War "in 1951, two years before the war ended." In the decades since, scholars and policymakers alike have come to affirm diplomat Charles Bohlen's assertion that "[i]t was the Korean War and not World War II that made the United States a world military-political power." Forgotten wars are thus not doomed to be inconsequential. Yet so much of war studies has been devoted to what historian Carol Gluck has termed the "operations of memory," its material and psychic modes of production and consumption in public and private realms extended all the way to postmemory. War memories are products of amnesias both selective and vast, but the political and psychic work of forgetting is more than the other to commemoration. What of the significant omissions that have not only been neglected by projects of recovery or redress but, in fact, have been disabled or made impossible by such efforts? What are the operations of forgetting wars?

This special issue invites essays on forgotten wars, whether those military exercises were deemed "small wars" or obscured conflicts within "great wars." We welcome scholarship devoted to the myriad forgotten wars within the Asia-Pacific region as well as those that have shaped US-Asian relations, and we are interested in the ways in which regional and transpacific skirmishes are erased, neglected, or otherwise rendered illegible. We also encourage interdisciplinary theorization of the possibilities and limits of cultural amnesia as a response to atrocity and conflict; critical attention to the dynamics between individual and social forgetting; and sustained engagement with the ethical and moral implications of forgetting in relation to memory and counter-memory. In addition to the politics of forgetting within local and transnational contexts, we invite contributions that explore the manipulation and representation of cultural and aesthetic artifacts in these wars, as well as the effacement or trace of such materials in their aftermaths. We seek to examine forgetting as a means toward comprehending operations of war that remain untouched within the dominant frame of memory; to this end, we are interested in accounts of forgotten wars of differing scales, alignments, and implications.

Essays (between 6,000-10,000 words) should be prepared according to the author-date + bibliography format as outlined in section 2.38 of the University of Minnesota Press style guide, and submitted electronically to verge@psu.edu.

Authors' names should not appear on manuscripts; instead, please include a separate document with the author's name and address and the title of the article with your electronic submission. Authors should not refer to themselves in the first person in the submitted text or notes if such references would identify them; any necessary references to the author's previous work, for example, should be in the third person.

Submission Deadline: June 1, 2018