CALL FOR ARTICLES 

As a follow up to the one-day CLIC (Centre for Literary and Intermediality Crossings) conference on Seriality in December 2020 (keynotes by Jason Mittell and Adil El Arbi), the Spring 2022 issue of Journal for Literary and Intermedial Crossings (JLIC) will focus on Seriality research. 

Guest editors are Ronald Geerts, Anneleen Masschelein, Ernest Mathijs and Bart Nuyens.

The Journal for Literary and Intermedial Crossings (JLIChttps://clic.research.vub.be/en/journal) is an international, peer-reviewed open access journal. It publishes high-quality, innovative research engaging with literary and intermedial phenomena from various methodological angles and a wide range of disciplines including studies on literature, theatre, screenwriting, media and culture. The e-journal is supported by an international editorial board and aimed at an academic readership. JLIC offers an online publication platform to researchers from various fields engaging either directly or indirectly with the study of hybrid literary and/or intermedial phenomena.

Seriality has become “an endemic feature of our twenty-first-century, hypermediated world” (Lindner 2014, ix) permeating contemporary literature, theatre, tv-series, feature films, narrative games, podcasts, YouTube channels, Instagram and other forms of storytelling social media.

Seriality is traditionally associated with repetition and variation. However, our interest seems to have shifted to the dynamic qualities of seriality. What strikes us and interests us today is not so much repetition but evolution, the development of (story) lines. As a result, the narrative aspects of seriality appear to grow in importance, which seems to go hand in hand with the rise of what is covered by the broad umbrella term ‘storytelling’ (sometimes ‘complex storytelling’, e.g. Mittell 2015). Although seriality is often explicitly linked to popular culture (e.g. Kelleter 2017), an increased interest in ‘seriality as a strategy’ can be observed in all kinds of art forms. Seriality also seems to be an important element in multi, cross and transmedial storytelling as serial narrative strategies spill from one media to another. To the idea of a Serial Shakespeare as “an infinite variety of appropriations in American TV drama” (Bronfen 2020) Ivo Van Hove and Internationaal Theater Amsterdam recently added not just their theatrical serial Romeinse Tragedies (2007, Roman Tragedies) in a carefully reworked online streaming version (2021) but also a ‘classic’ weekly -thus not bingeable- ten-episode tv-serial on Dutch television (2021).

No wonder some see emerging a new field of research, seriality studies (Denson 2011).

We welcome academic and artistic research contributions.

Topics for articles might include, but are not limited to:

  • Seriality as an inter-, trans-, cross-media research field, …
  • Seriality and story worlds, …
  • Seriality in anthology series (Black Mirror, True Detective, other, literature), …
  • Seriality in literature: from crime literature to novel cycles (e.g. Proust, Knausgard, Elena Ferrante), …
  • Seriality as research process (theater, dance, performance, writing, eg Luk Perceval, Milo Rau, Michiel Vandevelde, Radouan Mriziga, Kenneth Goldsmith), …
  • Seriality and time (eg Richard Linklater (Boyhood, Before trilogy), François Truffaut (the “Antoine Doinel” films), Michael Apted (Up series), …
  • Seriality and how it influenced the conception of the term “character” (see previous point, but also multiple protagonists, influences on the narrative construction of the character, …
  • Seriality as never-ending story: 1001 nights (also in its many Covid-19 apparitions?), …
  • Seriality as episodicity and seriality-as-franchise: expanding series by developing relatively independent elements. Historical examples (literature, comics, theater, film). How far can one go (cf. the lack of success from recent Star Wars “episodes”)? (Franchising also to ‘occupy the market’, as the producers of the successful series CSI themselves created franchises very quickly, for fear that the story formula would be copied by others.), …
  • Seriality as a tension-building strategy (e.g. in podcasts, in documentaries or docu-fiction) when narrative strategies from fiction are used in documentary series of the type Wild Wild Country, Making a Murderer, De verdwijning van Britta Cloetens). How is its factual character influenced by the fictional narrative strategies?
  • Seriality as a commercial strategy: how an audience’s familiarity with characters, theme, arena and genre generates a customer-binding effect. To what extent is there a tension between the provision of fixed story elements vs variation, surprise, innovation? …
  • Seriality as fragmentation, e.g. p.o.v. storytelling of the same events from different successive narrators, creating repetitions and creating cognitive dissonance, Rashomon, The Leftovers, Westworld, De dag, in film and TV, in literature much older (Faulkner obviously, but also later), …
  • Seriality as in ‘adaptation’, ‘translation’, ‘recycling’, ‘remix’, … (The Bridge; The Office; Flikken (resp. Ghent, Maastricht, Rotterdam) but also e.g. “Serial Shakespeare” as a ‘dramaturg’ of contemporary series, Bronfen 2020), …
  • Seriality in / as social media (podcasts, YouTube vloggers, Instagram storytellers, Twitter poetry), …
  • Seriality and repetition and the tension between offering trusted elements vs necessary variation and progression (see seriality as a commercial strategy), …
  • Seriality in comics (“see album x”), …
  • Seriality in games, …
  • Seriality and poetry, …
  • Seriality and genre, …
  • To be continued … 

 

Academic articles should be between 5,000 and 6,000 words (references and footnotes included) in Dutch, English, French, German, Italian or Spanish. All manuscripts are peer- reviewed. JLIC supports textual as well as multi-media formatting. All work submitted to JLIC should reference and be formatted according to our Author Guidelines. Articles may be submitted in Word format. Figures, video and audio files etc. should be saved separately from the text.

The deadline for articles is 15 October 2021. Please send an abstract of maximum 500 words (in English and, if applicable, also in the language of your article, i.e. Dutch, French, German, Italian or Spanish) and a list of 5 keywords (in the same (two) language(s)) and a 100-word author bio (in English only) to ronald.geerts@vub.be by 1 September 2021.

Potential contributors should bear in mind that a two-stage review process is envisaged for full essays. In the first stage, articles will be reviewed by one of the journal editors. In the second stage, articles will be double-blind peer-reviewed by at least one external anonymous expert referee.

JLIC considers all manuscripts on the strict condition that:

  • The manuscript is your own original work, and does not duplicate any other previously published work, including your own previously published work.
  • the manuscript has been submitted only to the Journal of Literary and Intermedial Crossings; it is not under consideration or peer review or accepted for publication or in press or published elsewhere.
  • The manuscript contains nothing that is abusive, defamatory, libellous, obscene, fraudulent, or illegal.
  • Tthe author has obtained the necessary permission to reuse third-party material in their article. The use of short extracts of text and some other types of material is usually permitted, on a limited basis, for the purposes of criticism and review without securing formal permission. If you wish to include any material in your article for which you do not hold copyright, and which is not covered by this informal agreement, you will need to obtain written permission from the copyright owner prior to submission. 

References:

Lindner, C. 2014. “Foreword.”, Serialization in Popular Culture, edited by R. Allen and T. vanden Berg, ix–xi. Routledge.

Bronfen, E. 2020. Serial Shakespeare. An infinite variety of appropriations in American TV drama. Univ. of Manchester Press

Denson, S. 2011. ““To be continued…”: Seriality and Serialization in Interdisciplinary Perspective”, JLTonline (17.06.2011)

Kelleter, F. (ed). 2017 Media of Serial Narrative. Ohio State Univ. Press

Mittell, J. 2015. Complex TV. The Poetics of Contemporary Television Storytelling. NYU Press

Roman Tragedies, 2007-2021, International Theatre Amsterdam, re: Ivo Van Hove, https://ita.nl/en/shows/romeinse-tragedies/1569929/

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