Information For Authors

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Upcoming Issues

Title Issue Editors Submission Date Release Date
'exclusion' Susanne Eichner and Corinna Lüthje 25 Sep. 2020 25 Nov. 2020
'bubbles' Jo Coghlan and Lisa J. Hackett 8 Jan. 2021 10 Mar. 2021
'dark' Luke Heemsbergen, Alexia Maddox, Amelia Johns, Toija Cinque, and Robert W. Gehl 19 Feb. 2021 21 Apr. 2021
'zoom' Mark Nunes and Cassandra Ozog 16 Apr. 2021 6 June 2021
'design' Nicole Sully, Timothy O’Rourke, and Andrew Wilson 11 June 2021 11 Aug. 2021
'monster' Lorna Piatti-Farnell and Gwyneth Peaty 6 Aug. 2021 6 Oct. 2021

'exclusion'

Exclusion is the antithesis of integration. In everyday life interactions, with and without media, mechanisms of exclusion and inclusion emerge simultaneously, contradicting each other and often politically motivated. Social media and social media groups have been praised as realms of political activism, as sheltered places for minority groups, or as platforms to give hitherto unheard voices a forum (e.g. #metoo). At the same time social media came to the fore as realms of exclusion and othering: we are witnessing verbal abuse, threats, and death threats on social media platforms against migrants, politicians, LGBTIQ persons, women, or activists. We are familiar with professional media output employing excluding terminologies and depictions of the outsider, thus evoking and strengthening ideas of the "other" (e.g. in terms of gender, ethnicity, political opinion, space, and place). We watch on screens in factual and fictional formats the depicted "other" - either as absent or as stereotyped.

This issue of M/C Journal seeks to contribute to a deeper understanding of the mechanisms of societal exclusion in and through media with a special focus on - but not restricted to - social media. Following the discussions of the Mediated Communication, Public Opinion, and Society Section at IAMCR Madrid 2019, we invite contributions on the theme of "exclusion" from a wide spectrum of social, cultural, institutional, and affective domains.

Areas of investigation may include, but are not limited to:

  • exclusion in/through journalism
  • exclusion in/through social media
  • exclusion in/through fictional media
  • exclusion of communication
  • forms of exclusion
  • functions and dysfunctions of exclusion
  • exclusion, inclusion, and integration
  • exclusion and racism
  • exclusion and sexism
  • exclusion and populism
  • migration and exclusion
  • exclusion and social tensions

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 25 Sep. 2020
  • Release date: 25 Nov. 2020
  • Editors: Susanne Eichner, Corinna Lüthje

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to exclusion@journal.media-culture.org.au.


'bubbles'

Bubble. The word evokes imagery of a light, transient, frivolous phenomenon that quickly bursts should you try to touch it. The Oxford English Dictionary lists the word as both a noun and a verb, starting with the archetypal gas bubble, quickly moving onto concepts that suggest a removal from reality such as living in a bubble or an economic bubble. The interior of the bubble is a world apart from the norm, but its boundaries are so thin and permeable that it only takes the lightest touch for the two worlds to collide. We say ideas bubble up or bubble away, we have thought bubbles, speech bubbles, our emotions can bubble away. We can wear bubble skirts and bubble trousers, chew our bubble-gum, drink bubble tea or bubbly champagne, West Ham United supporters sing “I’m forever blowing bubbles”. We take bubble baths, sit in bubbly spas, some of us display bubbly personalities, some are even called ‘bubble’, some call their pets ‘bubble’, and then there is the ‘boy in the bubble’.

This issue explores the social phenomena that have earnt a bubbly epitaph. 

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 8 Jan. 2021
  • Release date: 10 Mar. 2021
  • Editors: Jo Coghlan and Lisa J. Hackett

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to bubbles@journal.media-culture.org.au.


'dark'

What is dark often connotes moral registers toward what society hides or fears. Yet ‘the dark' offers space for autonomy from digital visibilities that pervade economic, political and surveillance logics of the present age. While a technical rather than moral definition of darkness (Gehl) opens dark spaces that seek legitimacy and anonymities against structural surveillance, other readings of digitally mediated dark (Fisher and Bolter) suggest tensions between exploitative potentials and deep societal reflection. At the same time, dark algorithms and the dark faces they bias are vying for agency in a world where the power of being off grid and being in control of it are in flux; what happens when economies or nations are kept in the dark or forced to go dark, yet community and society persist? The tensions that darkness, being dark, acting dark, and becoming dark produce, show the normative powers of otherwise remaining in the light. 

This issue expands on tensions around what is dark and connected, challenging binaries that otherwise determine dark from light. Past the Dark Web and its social capacities, we reflect here on how the concept of ‘dark’ might expand opportunities for exploring notions of existence and persistence in dark times that remain datafied and require moral, ethical, and pragmatic responses to selves and communities seeking to be / belong in / of the dark. This issue invites responses to the theme 'dark', understood broadly as operating in and through digital places, powers, and practices whether technical, moral, or otherwise. Are we afraid of the dark?  

Possible considerations include (but are by no means limited to):

  • Theoretical, empirical, creative, methodological, ethical approaches to darkness;
  • Social/political activism on dark web or messenger platforms with end-to-end encryption (i.e. Signal, WhatsApp, Telegram);
  • The aesthetics and transformations of power;
  • Autonomy from surveillance;
  • Socio-technical discrimination through algorithmic structures;
  • Data motility and movement through dark and light spaces;
  • Comparative Internet governance and legislation of the unseen;
  • Acts of intrusion, appropriation, and piracy;
  • Machine readability and social control;
  • Ethical frameworks for researching dark web and dark social spaces

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 19 Feb. 2021
  • Release date: 21 Apr. 2021
  • Editors: Luke Heemsbergen, Alexia Maddox, Amelia Johns, Toija Cinque, and Robert W. Gehl

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to dark@journal.media-culture.org.au.


'zoom'

On 9 March 2020, just two days before the World Health Organisation would name the COVID-19 outbreak a global pandemic, Italy declared a nation-wide lockdown. Over the following weeks, cities, states, and nations around the world would do the same, dramatically changing the social landscape for millions of individuals. Overnight, it seemed, Zoom became the default modality for remote engagement, rapidly morphing from brand name to eponymous generic—a verb and a place and mode of being all at once. In an era of COVID-19, our relationships and experiences are deeply intertwined with our ability to “zoom.”

This nearly worldwide and ubiquitous shift to remote work and remote play was both unprecedented and entirely anticipated. While teleworking, digital commerce, online learning, and social networking were common fare by 2020, in March of that year telepresence shifted from option to mandate, and Zooming became a daily practice for tens of millions of individuals worldwide. This shift has resulted in new forms of artistic innovations, new modes of pedagogy, and new ways of social organising, but it has also created new forms (and exacerbated existing forms) of exploitation, inequity, social isolation and precarity.

This issue of M/C Journal will explore the impacts and implications of Zoom and other teleconferencing platforms one year after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. We seek a wide range of submissions that will explore how a simple, four letter word has come to encapsulate a distinct moment in human history. How do we Zoom, and why?

We invite contributions that explore the experiences of our new cultural reality of Zoom through a variety of disciplines and areas of investigation, including (but not limited to):

  • teleworking and hypercapitalism
  • trolling in the age of Zoom-bombing
  • Zoom and the permeability of online/offline spaces
  • accessibility and barriers to virtual learning and living
  • ambient intimacy in isolation
  • Zoom-outs and other backlash movements
  • relationships and familial relations
  • “Zoom waves” and other forms of (para)social interaction
  • surveillance: public acts on private platforms—and vice versa
  • art and adaptations to creation and performance
  • Zoom, isolation and mental health
  • virtual spaces for marginalised populations

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 16 Apr. 2021
  • Release date: 16 June 2021
  • Editors: Mark Nunes and Cassandra Ozog

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to zoom@journal.media-culture.org.au.


'design'

Between its broader sense of intent and that of making a drawing or plan, design appears to be expanding in both meaning and its application. Design is well understood when related to our material culture, where the medium often bears the imprint of the designer/s. Design has moved relatively seamlessly from the physical into the digital world. It makes sense that someone designs the applications that we use and that digital content, just as much as a poster, requires design. Design activities are rarely inseparable from a market economy, but the language of design has infiltrated business more broadly. Design processes are used in seemingly novel ways across business and governments seeking to improve their digital and real-world services. New usage related to users, perhaps unknowingly, replicates the interests of designers in the 1960s who sought a more equitable solutions to social problems experienced in the physical world. What loosely unites these disparate design disciplines diachronically and today is a shared sense that design improves the world we live in. But even with the best intentions, design does not inevitably lead to a better world. Our desire for stuff, and the social status this might bring, has helped to elevate designers into celebrities, but also heightened distinctions between the copy and the original. Design, either analogue or digital, has unintended consequences. These include, among other examples, the environmental degradation that emerges from design consumption through to the carbon footprint of the digital world.

This issue of M/C Journal seeks to critique design across its range of disciplines. Contributors are encouraged to engage critically with varied senses of design as method, practice and product, examining your own disciplines and research interests. The editors welcome papers that explore, but are not limited to:

  • Cross-cultural design
  • Design cultures
  • Design disciplines
  • Design economy
  • Design evaluation
  • Design methods
  • Design politics
  • Equitable design
  • Indigenous design
  • Over-design
  • Regulating design
  • Theories of design
  • Unintentional design

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 11 June 2021
  • Release date: 11 Aug. 2021
  • Editors: Nicole Sully, Timothy O’Rourke, and Andrew Wilson

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to design@journal.media-culture.org.au.


'monster'

Since the earliest legends and mythological tales, the figure of the monster has functioned as an oppositional force against which humans define themselves. As Margaret Atwood points out, “heroes need monsters to establish their heroic credentials. You need something scary to overcome”. More recently, however, our understanding of the monster has become more complex. They are no longer ‘out there’ but ‘in here’; “they live inside us” (Stephen King). In this issue we approach the concept and figure of the monster with fresh curiosity. What makes something ‘monstrous’?  Who are our monsters? What anxieties do they reflect back upon us? As a point of intimate identification, why are so many people (including Kanye) now embracing the monster as an aspect of their identity?

Topics and areas of discussion might include, but are not limited to:

  • Representations of monsters in popular culture (film, TV, video games, music, comics, etc.)
  • Monsters in literature and poetry
  • Monstrosity as a critical concept
  • Monster ontologies and representations (from the body to the self…)
  • The monster and identity
  • Monsters, history, and folklore
  • Evolving monster metaphors
  • Monsters and genre (from fantasy to science fiction and beyond)
  • ‘Monstrous’ political figures
  • Monstrosity and the body
  • The monstrous nature of the media
  • Notions of ‘the monster’ within postcolonial discourses
  • Monsters and ‘the end of the world’
  • Monsters, science, and culture
  • Monsters and the Gothic/horror
  • Disease ‘as monster’

Prospective contributors should email an abstract of 100-250 words and a brief biography to the issue editors. Abstracts should include the article title and should describe your research question, approach, and argument. Biographies should be about three sentences (maximum 75 words) and should include your institutional affiliation and research interests. Articles should be 3000 words (plus bibliography). All articles will be double-blind refereed and must adhere to MLA style (6th edition).

Details

  • Article deadline: 6 Aug. 2021
  • Release date: 6 Oct. 2021
  • Editors: Lorna Piatti-Farnell and Gwyneth Peaty

Please submit articles through this Website. Send any enquiries to monster@journal.media-culture.org.au.