Special Issue of the Review of Disability Studies: Disability and Popular Culture

Call for Abstracts for a Special Issue of the Review of Disability Studies: Disability and Popular Culture

This special issue addresses the critical importance of the intersection of popular culture and the construction of disability. Where access to and representation within public spaces largely shapes power, “popular culture” will be considered one of the most important public spaces in which concepts of disability are negotiated. The guest authors seek proposals that represent global perspectives on how pop culture is a critical location in which dominant cultural scripts about the body are re-enforced, contested, and perhaps re-imagined. The issue will consider accounts across of a wide variety of popular media, especially film, television and online culture.

Questions addressed will include:

  • How has the representation of people with disabilities in television, movies and emerging popular digital forms changed over time?
  • How is disability represented in gaming culture and within other virtual spaces, for example, Second Life? How might participation with such digital imagery dialog with lived experiences?
  • How are historical representations of people with disabilities, e.g., Freak shows, being reimagined and/or revisited in popular culture? How might this be placed in dialog with efforts towards social justice

Calls for papers will solicit writing that addresses intersections between disability and popular culture, including (but not limited to) considerations of:

  • Representation of the sexuality of people with disabilities in popular media
  • Telethons
  • Glee and other representations on popular television
  • Representations of disability in other national contexts, including Bollywood
  • Dominant media coverage of disability rights activism or protest
  • Comedy and disability
  • Superheroes and disability
  • Representations of villains with disabilities
  • Representations of disability in comics and graphic novels

Other topics that address intersections between disability and popular culture, particularly from a transnational perspective

Send 250-word abstracts by February 5, 2013 via email to Guest Editors Raphael Raphael rraphael@hawaii.edu and Holly Manaseri hmanaser@hawaii.edu (Center on Disability Studies University of Hawaii). Please be sure to send abstracts to both editors. For the accepted abstracts, we will request selected authors submit completed articles June 10, 2013 of approximately 3000-5000 words.

Note that an invitation to submit an article based on an abstract does not guarantee publication of that article in The Review of Disability Studies. The RDS Managing Editor reserves the right to deny publication of any article. For more information about The Review of Disability Studies, and formatting guidelines please visit http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/.

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