CFP: American Quarterly Special Issue on Tourism and Militarism

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Call for Papers: Special Issues

American Quarterly publishes one special issue per year each September.  Special issues are edited by the guest editors in collaboration with the AQ editors and the AQ Managing Board. They are comprised of a combination of essays that are solicited by the editors and essays that are submitted to a call for papers. The process is subject to editorial but not blind peer review. For more information on special issues and a look back at past special issues, please visit the Special Issues page.



Call for Papers

Special Issue: Tours of Duty and Tours of Leisure

Edited by Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez (University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, American Studies), Jana K. Lipman (Tulane University, History) and Teresia Teaiwa (Victoria University of Wellington, Pacific Studies)


The 2016 special issue of American Quarterly, tentatively titled “Tours of Duty and Tours of Leisure,” will focus on the convergences of tourism and militarism as crucial manifestations of US imperial strategy. US militarism permeates the economy and culture in occupied territories, allied states, and postcolonial regions alike, generating political and economic dependencies in a decidedly colonial grammar. In each instance, tourism is held up as a promise and panacea for emergent markets, even as the tourist economy glosses over, hides, or romanticizes histories of war, violence, and terror. Tourism and militarism converge within and outside US military bases, in their shared personnel, and through interchangeable technologies and logics. They can also be entangled in “eco-tourist” adventures, volunteer missions, memorial pilgrimages, along with numerous other sites, illuminating intersections between militarization and the neoliberal regimentation of modern life.

When Teresia Teaiwa first used the term militourism to reflect on the sexualized evasion of the nuclear gaze in Micronesia, she articulated how Asia and the Pacific had coalesced into the key target of Western and US Cold War politics. While Asia and the Pacific continue to operate under increasingly securitized logics and market regimes, Latin America, Africa, Central Asia, and even Europe have also come into the US orbit under similar terms. Today, tourism and militarism reinforce US logics of security and profoundly shape the material realities, political freedoms, economic solutions, and environmental destinies of people and lands both at “home” and abroad. They are, as Cynthia Enloe suggests, “kin, bound together as cause and effect.”

This special issue seeks to explore the mutual and cogenerative genealogies, technologies, ideologies, and geographies of tourism and militarism, with particular interest in how they collaborate to shore up US geostrategic interests, as well as provide instances where US hegemony might be critiqued and dismantled. 

Topics might include theorizations of genealogies of hospitality and occupation; tourisms of occupation, war, and demilitarized zones and borders; tourisms of battlefields and memorials; sex tourism and its military/militarized clientele; the gendered and sexualized modalities of tourism and the military; labor histories of tourist and military economies; the relationship between tourism, terrorism, and notions of “security”; the interplay between military surveillance and the tourist gaze; demilitarization tours and activism; the use of drones and other militarized technologies for travel; the police state and tourist safety; the militarization of tourism through state policies such as travel advisories. 

Submissions are due August 1, 2015. Authors must address the guest editors and clearly indicate that their submissions are intended for the special issue in their cover letter. Accepted submissions will appear in American Quarterly, volume 68, issue 3 (Fall 2016). Learn more about the submission guidelines

Future Special Issues

The AQ Managing Board is open to proposals for future special issues, including special issues that include online and hyperlink elements. Please email your special issue proposal directly to with subject line: “AQ Special Issue Proposal.”


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