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January 2009, Week 1


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Rob White <[log in to unmask]>
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Mon, 5 Jan 2009 14:42:51 +0000
text/plain (90 lines)
5 January 2009

Dear colleagues,

Please find below the 2009 Film Quarterly submission guidelines / call for papers, which I hope you will find of interest.

Please note especially the first category, "Collaborative Short-Format Criticism," which it's hoped might prompt particular interest.

The relevant email is:

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With warm good wishes for 2009,

Rob White



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Founded in 1958, Film Quarterly is a scholarly magazine about movies old and new, publishing essayistic work that combines academic seriousness with the fluency of good journalism. 

Submissions to the magazine are welcome, especially from writers with good research credentials who wish to write criticism that is intellectually ambitious while being accessible to specialists and nonspecialists alike. 

Submissions in the following categories are sought:

(2500 WORDS)
Recent years have seen a rise in fast-response blogging as well as “wiki”-style collaborations. There is also the widespread practice of giving feedback on websites and so building up a palimpsest of debate.

Champions of such writing celebrate greater immediacy and conversational breadth, seeing “Web 2.0” as a kind of salon abuzz with opinion and debate. Skeptics retort that presentation and research are often slipshod, the ideas poorly formed or strident.

Whatever the virtues and vices of new modes of writing, they prompt reflection on the relationship between insight, concision, promptness, and collaboration. Therefore we invite submissions of co-written critical exchanges that develop such formats into carefully crafted, creative, “writerly” criticism and argument rather than off-the-cuff, chatroom-style commentary.

Two rubrics are suggested. The first is dialogue, in which two writers respond to each other’s previous texts. The second is the round robin, in which a number of writers address the same topic or text. (We do not necessarily rule out other variations, for example a chain letter.)

We will favor submissions in this category that seek to address the richness and complexity of carefully predefined subjects—for example a single scene in a film. It is recommended that each entry be of roughly equal length; probably 250 words per entry is ideal, with the overall text not to exceed 2500 words. 

(3,500 WORDS)
In-depth and especially comparative reviews of films that have been recently released in theaters. To get an idea of the comparative approach, see two pieces in Volume 61, Number 4 (on Ozu and Naruse; on I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone and Still Life). We are also interested in reviews of recent DVD boxed sets or special editions.

(3,500 WORDS)
“Foreign correspondent” dispatches—see the report from Rome in Volume 61, Number 3.

(4,000–6,500 WORDS)
Comprehensive studies of an established director’s work—see the article on Antonioni in Volume 62, Number 1. 

(4,000–6,500 WORDS)
Wide-ranging survey of contemporary practice in Africa (or selected regions).

(4,000–6,500 WORDS)
New trends and major works in contemporary practice.

(1,750 WORDS)
Op-ed pieces, especially against-the-grain assessments of films in distribution (see the view of No Country for Old Men in Volume 61, Number 4) and argument about what matters in film criticism (see the piece in Volume 62, Number 1).

(4,000–6,500 WORDS)
Interviews in which the impact of digital technology is explored are especially welcome.

Articles that are considered for publication in Film Quarterly are formally peer-reviewed by at least two members of the editorial board or other advisers. Reviews, reports, and interviews are evaluated by the editor and at least one other reader. Therefore writers should expect to get feedback and will often be asked to revise their work, consulting with the editor, as a condition of publication. Where appropriate, we will consider proposals for articles or essays in advance of a submission and then, if pursuing the project, truncate the review process later. 

Due to the volume of correspondence received by the editor, it is greatly regretted that it is not possible to acknowledge each submission personally. If you have not heard back within three weeks of a submission, please understand that it will unfortunately not be taken forward. The editor’s decision in respect of publication, and of which submissions are reviewed (only, we regret, a minority), is final.

In order that potential conflicts of interest be managed appropriately, please inform the editor of any personal or professional association you have, or have had, with any work, individual, or institution you are writing about.

We look forward to submissions that are consistent with these guidelines.

Rob White
17 December 2008


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