This spe­cial issue seeks sub­mis­sions that doc­u­ment, pro­voke, or imag­ine rela­tions between humans, and between humans and non­hu­mans that go beyond and trou­ble nor­ma­tive cat­e­gories of “nature,” “sex,” and “love.” These man­i­fest, for exam­ple, in hier­ar­chi­cal, anthro­pocen­tric, het­ero- and homo­nor­ma­tive, monog­a­mous, mar­riage-cen­tric and oth­er set­tler-colo­nial forms of kin, kind, and relat­ing. Ideas of what is nat­ur­al are always para­mount in set­tler invo­ca­tions of what are con­sid­ered the right ways to relate. Our focus on indige­nous (“tra­di­tion­al” and/or “resur­gent”), queer, and oth­er con­scious­ly crit­i­cal forms of relat­ing takes inspi­ra­tion from inno­v­a­tive work with­in the poten­tial­ly artic­u­lat­ed fields of indige­nous stud­ies; fem­i­nist, queer, and trans the­o­ry; dis­abil­i­ty and crip stud­ies; crit­i­cal race stud­ies; sci­ence stud­ies; and per­for­mance stud­ies. We are look­ing for sub­mis­sions in which schol­ars, artists, and oth­er thinkers inter­ro­gate nor­ma­tive, espe­cial­ly state-sanc­tioned forms of relating.

Pos­si­ble top­ics to be addressed in the issue include, but are not lim­it­ed to: 1) crit­i­cal analy­ses and accom­pa­ny­ing visu­al­iza­tions; 2) video; and 3) pho­to­graph­ic rep­re­sen­ta­tions of:

  • Mate­r­i­al cul­ture respons­es that inter­ro­gate dom­i­nant racial and/or sex­u­al rep­re­sen­ta­tions of par­tic­u­lar bod­ies’ vis a vis rela­tion­al norms.
  • Per­for­mance art respons­es that par­o­dy and/or imag­ine alter­na­tives to state poli­cies man­dat­ing com­pul­so­ry forms of sex­u­al­i­ty, mar­riage, fam­i­ly, and relat­ed forms of land tenure.
  • Analy­ses of sci­en­tif­ic and/or tech­no­log­i­cal knowl­edges that rep­re­sent or cat­e­go­rize human or non­hu­man bod­ies in het­ero- or homo­nor­ma­tive ways;
  • Visu­al rep­re­sen­ta­tions and accom­pa­ny­ing analy­ses of eco­sex­u­al or eco­erot­ic per­for­mance art, music, dance, or theater.
  • Treat­ments of ways in which “alter­na­tive” rela­tion­ship mod­els rein­force and/or sub­vert log­ics of pri­va­ti­za­tion under­ly­ing dom­i­nant forms of relationality.
  • Imag­i­na­tive the­o­riza­tions and visu­al­iza­tions of friend­ship, com­mu­ni­ty, and solidarity.
  • Explo­rations of embodied/corporeal dimen­sions of rela­tion­al­i­ty beyond the entrenched nat­u­ral­iza­tion of cou­pled fam­i­ly forms.

Sub­mis­sion Guidelines

Schol­ars, artists, and per­form­ers are encour­aged to sub­mit pro­pos­als for both visu­al and writ­ten work. We request sub­mis­sions from: a) visu­al and per­for­mance artists who con­tex­tu­al­ize their work with aca­d­e­m­ic-type analy­ses, and b) aca­d­e­mics who use visu­al rep­re­sen­ta­tions, includ­ing pho­tog­ra­phy, oth­er visu­al art, and video as part of their analy­ses. Artists and aca­d­e­mics may want to co-author sub­mis­sions. Poten­tial authors should devel­op both a strong visu­al and ana­lyt­i­cal dimen­sion (can be text or audio) for their sub­mis­sions, although they do not have to be present in equal measure.

While it is not pre­scrip­tive, Canada’s Social Sci­ence and Human­i­ties Research Coun­cil (SSHRC) con­cept of research-cre­ation, may help con­cep­tu­al­ize appro­pri­ate sub­mis­sions: “An approach to research that com­bines cre­ative and aca­d­e­m­ic research prac­tices, and sup­ports the devel­op­ment of knowl­edge and inno­va­tion through artis­tic expres­sion, schol­ar­ly inves­ti­ga­tion, and exper­i­men­ta­tion. The cre­ation process is sit­u­at­ed with­in the research activ­i­ty and pro­duces crit­i­cal­ly informed work in a vari­ety of media (art forms).” (http://​www​.sshrc​-crsh​.gc​.ca/​f​u​n​d​i​n​g​-​f​i​n​a​n​c​e​m​e​n​t​/​p​r​o​g​r​a​m​s​-​p​r​o​g​r​a​m​m​e​s​/​d​e​f​i​n​i​t​i​o​n​s​-​e​n​g​.​a​spx).

Pro­pos­als for sub­mis­sions are due August 1, 2016. Pro­pos­als for writ­ten sub­mis­sions should be approx­i­mate­ly 500 words. Pro­pos­als for visu­al and video sub­mis­sions should include a short sam­ple of the work plus a 250-word descrip­tion of the work and the analy­sis it offers. Accept­ed sub­mis­sions will range from a com­bi­na­tion of 2000-8000 words and 2-20 images, or video of no more than 20 min­utes in length. Accept­ed sub­mis­sions will be due Jan­u­ary 15, 2017. In keep­ing with Imag­i­na­tions’ man­date, sub­mis­sions may include visu­al con­tent as part of their argu­men­ta­tion rather than as sim­ply sup­ple­men­tal mate­r­i­al. Please include a 100 word abstract and a 100 word bio and send any images sep­a­rate­ly, as well as embed­ded in the sub­mis­sion, as high qual­i­ty (300 dpi) files.

Send simul­ta­ne­ous­ly to Kim Tall­Bear (tallbear@ualberta.ca) and to Angela Wil­ley (awilley@wost.umass.edu)