ImageTexT: Interdisciplinary Comics Studies

ISSN: 1549-6732
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Editorial Note for New Creative Reviews

By ImageTexT Staff

With this issue, ImageTexT inaugurates the newest section of the journal: creative reviews. At ImageTexT, we feel it is part of our academic duty to present comics that address and confront socio-cultural issues. The addition of these reviews comes in part as a reaction to the increasing murkiness of the American political scene and in part of the recognition that this hate-based rhetoric is something that has been circulating across the globe for much longer. Attention often centers American and/or Western experiences; however, limiting our approach to a Western-only focus would only serve to perpetuate these problems across the globe. As such, the scope of these reviews, as our first reviews included demonstrate, ranges from the individual lived experience to large-population demographics.

In the original call for reviewers, we noted that academia—an institution itself under attack—must fulfill the socio-cultural role of combating hate in our work and classrooms. To help confront this hate, we will include reviews of comics that openly engage with racism, sexism, bigotry, and any other socio-cultural issue. Our goals in doing so are threefold. First, we hope to help shine a light on experiences of individuals and groups affected by hate-based rhetoric. Second, we hope that these reviews will help inspire research and academic work exploring these issues. Third, we hope these reviews will lead to the inclusion of socially-minded texts in any number of classrooms.

Although the odious reasons listed above have spurred the addition of these reviews, we are deeply excited about the promise they bring for comics studies. We hope they inspire the academic work that will further dispel hatred across the globe. If you are interested in submitting a creative review to ImageTexT, we have included instructions in the updated call for reviews attached below.

ImageTexT: Call for Reviewers

ImageTexT is an interdisciplinary academic journal dedicated to the examination and advancement of image/text works. Centralizing the unique potential of comics, graphic novels, and animation, ImageTexT publishes original peer-reviewed articles analyzing the many formal, narratological, and social implications of comics texts. Additionally, each issue of the journal includes several reviews of academic texts recently published in image/text studies, broadly defined.

Since comics and animation have a long and rich history of reflecting, interacting with, and being shaped by the larger socio-cultural moment in which they were produced, image/text works have been highly influential in social movements and justice-oriented discourses throughout the world. In an effort to expand our reviews section, ImageTexT will begin inviting reviews of comics texts published by small presses, preferably engaging with the connection between image/text mediums and the social world.

At ImageTexT, we believe it is the academic community’s responsibility to keep social concerns in public discourse, resisting the normalization of hate-based rhetoric, images, or actions with our scholarly engagement. Given the critical socio-political climate of the contemporary United States, we feel comics that explicitly visualize social justice issues deserve academic and popular attention that helps illuminate the many ways these texts connect with or affect the actual lived experiences of those involved in these issues. To that end, we invite authors, publishers, or readers to recommend small-press texts that they believe deeply and critically engage with various social justice issues. Some of the texts we have available for review include:

We invite scholars, authors, and critics to submit 1,500-3,000 word reviews of these or any other small press, socially-oriented image/text works. To inquire about a specific title, suggest a title for review, or ask any other questions about the reviews process at ImageTexT please email Reviews Editor Kevin Cooley at kevin.cooley@ufl.edu and/or Managing Editor Charles Acheson at cpacheson21@ufl.edu.

 © 2018 Anastasia Ulanowicz (all rights reserved). This essay is the intellectual property of the author and cannot be printed or distributed without the author's express written permission other than excerpts for purposes consistent with Fair Use. The layout and design of this article is licensed under a Creative Commons License to ImageTexT; note that this applies only to the design of this page and not to the content itself.

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ImageTexT is published by the Department of English at the University of Florida.