Call for Submissions: The Encyclopedia of African American Culture: From Dashikis to Yoruba

Molly Reinhoudt's picture
Call for Publications
February 1, 2019
Subject Fields: 
African American History / Studies, Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Black History / Studies, Film and Film History, Music and Music History

We are actively seeking submissions for The Encyclopedia of African American Culture: From Dashikis to Yoruba. This three-volume A-Z encyclopedia will cover the broad roots of African American culture, including living traditions, rites of passage, folk culture, popular culture, subcultures, and other forms of shared expression. Readers often believe there to be a cohesive and shared culture among African Americans, and while the broad culture shares general commonalities, rich variation exists within specific cultural expressions. Topics for available entries include Art in the Black Arts Movement; Art in the Harlem Renaissance; Baseball, Caribbean and Negro League; Baseball, Major and Minor League; Basketball, Professional and Collegiate; Black Churches; Blaxploitation Films; Blues, beginning to WWII; Blues, WWII to the present; Call and Response; Cartooning; Children's Literature; Christianity, 1865 to the Present; Christianity, beginnings to 1865; Civic Holidays; Comedians; Cookbooks; Dance, Contemporary; Dance, Popular and Early; Folktales; Food Ways; Football, Professional and Collegiate; Fraternities and Sororities; Garifuna; Great Migration; Gullah; Horse Racing; Identity Formation and African Americans; Inventors; Islam; Language and the Impact of Africa on English; LGBTQ Culture; Modern Art since 1960 ; Motown Museum; Murals; Names and Naming; Newspapers and Magazines, beginnings to WWII; Newspapers and Magazines, WWII to the Present; Opera; Photography; Pulp/Urban Literature; Quilting; Soul Music; Stage Acting; Television, 1980 to the present; and Television, beginnings to 1980. Please contact Omari Dyson at for more information.


The audience for this reference work is high school and undergraduate students, and laypersons. Do not write at an academic level. Avoid jargon and explain specialized terminology. When in doubt, define a term or identify a person. Explain concepts in uncomplicated language.


The first paragraph of your enjoy must contain a summary of the topic, including definitions of important terms. You must indicate how and why the subject is important to the study of African American culture. For individual biographies, the first paragraph should summarize the individual’s importance, as opposed to delving into details about their birth, death, etc. You may use subheadings for lengthier entries.


Entries should be straight-forward factual representations, with no bias or opinion. You’re welcome to include the balanced representation of outside opinions of scholars or experts with proper attribution. 


Entry Structure

Entries vary in length 1,000-2,000 words, depending on the amount of material and including bibliographies. If appropriate, each essay should include the following first three sections, but all entries must have a “Further Reading” (bibliography) section. 

  • History and Origins (250-500 words),
  • Regional Practices and Traditions (500-1,000 words),
  • Contemporary Forms (250-500 words),
  • Further Reading

“Spotlight entries” (500 words maximum): These entries will cover biographies of individuals important to related topical entries. Each Spotlight will feature a roughly chronological discussion of the significance of the individual within African American culture and their influence.


Further Reading

Each entry must include a Further Reading section that has approximately 5 sources. The Further Reading should conform to Chicago’s Author-Date style and include approximately 5 sources. Any sources cited within the text must be included. Please do not cite Wikipedia,, or other general information sites on the web. Avoid other reference works and encyclopedias. Do include scholarly publications such as books and journal articles, as well as any relevant news articles, etc.


Example:Hemingway, Ernest. 1940. For Whom the Bell Tolls. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.


Contact Info: 

Omari Dyson

Contact Email: