Indian graphic narratives and the post-millennial moment: reflections on the last twenty years

Varsha Singh's picture
Call for Papers
July 30, 2019 to December 30, 2019
Subject Fields: 
Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Literature, Popular Culture Studies

Call for Papers: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 

Special Issue on Post-millennial Indian Graphic Narratives

Guest Editors: E. Dawson Varughese, Sakshi Wason and Varsha Singh


The post-millennial years have witnessed significant developments in the field of popular visuality in South Asia and for India at least, a liberalised economy, advancements in digital technology, satellite television, urban beautification projects and a publishing boom have all shaped what we see, how we see it and why we see it. Within this post-millennial, economic, socio-cultural context Indian graphic narratives have taken their place and now, nearly twenty years into a sustained and successful period of their production, there is need to take stock of the field, reflecting on their creation, circulation, on artistic practice as well as domestic and global reception. Although the early years of the 2000s saw steady production and (in particular, domestic) circulation of Indian graphic narratives, research and scholarship has taken a little time to gain similar momentum but as the canon of creative work has grown, scholarship, particularly in the last seven to ten years has proved to be more sustained, more global and wider in its scope of enquiry. The field now enjoys some key academic texts in addition to many chapters and academic papers. The aim of this Special Issue is to publish a selection of academic papers that take stock of the field, reflecting on, exploring and presenting key themes, tropes and directions that the Indian graphic narratives scene has known over the last 15-20 years. Several invited, creative pieces will also appear in the Special Issue.


As editors, we are interested in examining the last twenty years of Indian graphic narratives production through the following (and other related) topics, keeping in mind the over-arching theme of ‘reflection’ and ‘taking stock’:


  • The post-millennial Indian publishing scene and Indian graphic narratives (global corporates, domestic, independent presses and story houses)
  • Theoretical approaches to post-millennial Indian graphic narratives (‘West and East’ notions of visuality, ‘reading’ graphic narratives and production as possible topics)
  • Graphic narratives of the early post-millennial years - Sarnath Banerjee, Orijit Sen, Vishwajyoti Ghosh as examples
  • Comics collectives in India and co-created/curated anthologies of graphic narrative work
  • Hindu epics, mythology, the dystopian in Indian graphic narratives (such as the works of Appupen, Amruta Patil as examples)
  • Biography-based Indian graphic narratives
  • Socially-engaged Indian graphic narratives
  • Graphic non-fiction (such as the First Hand volumes of work)
  • Indian graphic narrative artistic production and research (practice-based research papers are welcome)


We invite academic papers of around 5000-7000 words formatted according to T&F’s Reference Style of Chicago Author-Date [For full information on this style, see The Chicago Manual of Style (16th edn) or (click on the tab marked author-date to ensure you are using the right style)]



CfP in circulation: July to December 2019

Deadline for full papers: 30th December 2019

Decisions on papers between 31st January – 29th February 2020

Revisions on papers to be completed during March – May 2020

Preparation for Publication June 2020 – December 2020

Publication of Special Issue in 2021

For initial queries please email Dr E. Dawson Varughese:

Contact Info: 

Primary Respondent: Emma Dawson Varughese, Independent Scholar UK and Snr Fellow at Manipal Centre for Humanities, Manipal, India

Fellow Respondents: Sakshi Wason, the University of Delhi, India, Varsha Singh, IIT Jammu, India