Deadline extended: Call for papers on the theme "Interface" (Soapbox Journal for Cultural Analysis)

Seb Wigdel-Bowcott's picture
Call for Papers
December 14, 2021
Subject Fields: 
Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Journalism and Media Studies, Literature, Philosophy

For the upcoming issue of Soapbox, a graduate peer-reviewed journal for cultural analysis, we invite young researchers and established scholars alike to submit academic essays or creative work that critically engages with the theme of interface. We are inviting extended proposals (500-1000 words) that follow the MLA formatting and referencing style to be submitted to by December 14th, 2021.

An interface is a space of contact and interconnection. Thinking within but also beyond a media studies framework, we can understand our lives to be constantly mediated by interfaces of one form or another. They can be understood to serve as an intermediary between individuals and cultural objects, or alternatively, between experience and infrastructure. Interfaces mediate between a body and its environment, the private and public, subject and object. In each instance, the interface enables interaction and activity. Consider the movement from print to digital media, the structural design of spaces and buildings, or the format of an academic paper: as we move through the world we encounter and interact with a range of interfaces that delineate the possibilities of experience and knowledge in profound ways. As such, interfaces are cultural as well as political: they connect us to a matrix of histories and structures while their imbrication in power can afford and advance the needs of one group at the expense of another.

We encourage submissions relating to the themes above, as well as, but not limited to, the following: 

  • Engagements with cultural objects that critically explore the concept of the interface.
  • Reflections on the interconnections between genre, narrative modes, and the aesthetic experience enabled by different interfaces.
  • Platforms and streaming services: economic imperatives and aesthetic possibilities.
  • Il/literacies, agency, and the politics of access.
  • The interface as a verb: what does it mean to interface with space, others, the world, and beyond?
  • Engagements with social interface theory and German media theory (Kittler et al.)
  • Meaning-making and translatability: the interface as a vessel for signs. 
  • Epistemology and/of the interface: the interface as a hermeneutic tool.
  • Interfaces and perception of self/identity formation.
  • Biometrics and technology in border and domestic policing.
  • Interfaces in contemporary work environments and labour practices.
  • Interfaces in architecture, design, and AI.
  • Knowledge production and interdisciplinarity. 
  • Devices, screen culture and history.
  • Remediation.

We invite extended proposals (500-1000 words) that follow the MLA formatting and referencing style to be submitted to by December 14th 2021. Following conditional acceptance, an initial draft version (3000 words) would be due two weeks after the acceptance email. The editing process will take place over winter and early spring 2022. If you have any questions regarding your submission, do not hesitate to contact us. Editing and peer review guidelines will be sent to authors individually upon acceptance of their submission.

Guidelines for creative submissions are more flexible and can be finished works, but please keep in mind spatial limitations: there is usually room for one longer or two shorter pieces in the print version. A sense of the formatting possibilities can be garnered from previous issues (open-access pdf versions are available on our website).

We also accept submissions for our website all year round. We encourage a variety of styles and formats, including short-form essays (around 2000 words), reviews, experimental writing and multimedia. These can engage with the theme of the upcoming issue but are not limited to it. Please get in touch to pitch new ideas or existing projects that you would like to have published:

Contact Info: 

Seb Wigdel-Bowcott is Managing Editor at Soapbox Journal for Cultural Analysis and is posting on its behalf. Please send submissions to submissions@soapboxjournal.netFor any questions

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