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Call for Papers

Otherness: Essays and Studies 9.2


The peer-reviewed e-journal Otherness: Essays and Studies is now accepting submissions for its general issue, forthcoming Fall 2021.

Otherness: Essays and Studies publishes research articles from and across different scholarly disciplines that examine, in as many ways as possible, the concepts of otherness and alterity.  We particularly appreciate dynamic cross-disciplinary study.

“To approach the Other in conversation is to welcome his expression, in which at each instant he overflows the idea a thought would carry away from it. It is therefore to receive from the Other beyond the capacity of the I, which means exactly: to have the idea of infinity. But it also means: to be taught.” 
― Emmanuel Levinas, 
Totality and Infinity: An Essay on Exteriority

Otherness is complex and multivalent term. Otherness is defined by difference, both via outside markers and internal characteristics. Otherness is also a means by which we define ourselves. Thus the concept is inevitably bound with conceptions of selfhood, making it fundamental for discussions of subjectivity, social, cultural and national identity, and larger discussions of ontology. In light of more recent theory and criticism, the assumed line between the self and the other, the defining boundary of identity construction, is blurred, and as such the entire concept of otherness has become intricate and problematic. 

In recent years, the concept has become even more salient, as boundaries become increasingly tested, identities challenged, and difference ever more powerfully promoted. As bell hooks reminds us, “when the dominant culture demands that the Other be offered as a sign that progressive political change is taking place … it invites a resurgence of essentialist cultural nationalism” (Black Looks 1992). With that resurgence, we find the discussion of otherness ever more important.  It is this concept, otherness, in all of its complexities and nuances that we seek to explore and discuss through Otherness: Essays and Studies

Past projects from the Centre, and past issues of the journal, have brought together articles from the fields of cultural theory, continental philosophy, sociology, postcolonial studies, psychoanalysis, gender studies, Gothic studies, animal alterity, the performing arts, fandom and celebrity studies, postmodernism and poststructuralist theory, and the consideration of the post-linguistic turn in their consideration of otherness.  This journal invites submissions dealing with aspects of critical, socio-political, cultural, and literary exploration, within the scope of studies in otherness and alterity.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

Otherness in Cultural Representation

The Representation of Otherness in Popular Culture

Race, Otherness, and Mediated Representation

Cultural Appropriation, or The Commodification of the Other

Hybridity, Creolization, and the Global Other

Representations of Otherness in the Global South

Precarity, Otherness and Marginalization

Otherness and the Non-Human Animal

Ethics, Responsibility, and the Other

Memory, History, Trauma, and Otherness

Sexuality, Gender, the Body and the Other

Otherness, Phenomenology, and Lived Experience

Absolute Otherness vs. Self-Same Other

Monstrosity, Spectrality and Terror of the Other

Uncanny or Abject Others; or The Familiar Other

The Sublime or the Unimaginable Other

Otherness and the ‘Post-Racial’

Political Otherness, Democracy, and the Post-Truth Era

Nationalism, Multiculturalism, and the Identity of the Other


Articles should be between 5,000 – 8,000 words. All electronic submissions should be sent via email with Word document attachment formatted to Chicago Manual of Style (author-date) standards to the editor Matthias Stephan at otherness.research@gmail.com

The deadline for submissions is October 1, 2020.

Otherness: Essays and Studies 9.1

Copyright HamletScenen. Photograph by Bo Nymann.

Performance of Richard III by HamletScenen, Elsinore (2019) featuring Jean St. Clair (left) and Anne-Lise Galbold (right).


The peer-reviewed e-journal Otherness: Essays and Studies is now accepting submissions for a special issue, Representing Richard: Shakespeare and Otherness in a Global Context which will be guest-edited by Anne Sophie Refskou forthcoming Spring 2021.

Otherness: Essays and Studies publishes research articles from and across different scholarly disciplines that examine, in as many ways as possible, the concepts of otherness and alterity.  We particularly appreciate dynamic cross-disciplinary study.

Shakespeare’s two ‘Richards’ - Richard II and Richard III - share both the name of their title character and a performance history in which the representation of alterity has often been a key issue. In the case of Richard III, certain theatre and film productions have made explicit efforts to represent Richard’s physicality in a nuanced manner, including by casting disabled actors, while others have fallen into the trap of ‘cripping up’. Richard II, meanwhile, is associated with a longstanding and sometimes vexed tradition of playing the title character as gay. This raises the question of how ‘representing Richard’ on stage and screen can avoid participating in ingrained discrimination and instead find ways to critique and change prejudice.

Additionally, some productions of the two plays attempt (or fail) to address a wider and potentially intersectional spectrum, including race and gender, which is not always related to the title character, but which is in equal need of attention. Finally, the context of this discourse varies considerably depending on local geographies. A country like Denmark, which is usually viewed as reasonably progressive on matters related to equality and inclusion, is nonetheless often behind, for example the UK, when it comes to diverse representation in theatre (and cinema), and this may be said of other countries too. This highlights the importance of analysing examples across a global range, to enhance international and intercultural exchange.

This Special Issue of Otherness: Essays and Studies welcomes articles on productions of Richard II and Richard III - historical or contemporary, theatre or cinema - which analyse representation of alterity in local/global contexts. Articles that broaden the discussion to politics and processes of auditions, casting, the creation of accessible and inclusive theatre spaces and set designs, reviewing or education, are also encouraged, as are contributions involving theatre practitioners, such as conversation pieces or interviews.

Please email first draft of articles (max. 6000 words including notes and bibliography) by 1 October 2020 to Anne Sophie Refskou at annesophie@hamletscenen.dk and Matthias Stephan at engms@cc.au.dk. Questions or outlines of ideas ahead of the deadline are also very welcome. Articles are submitted to blind peer-review and publication is predicted for early 2021.

Any queries for Otherness: Essays and Studies can be made directly to otherness.research@gmail.com. 

General Submissions

Scholars are always welcome to submit articles within the scope of the journal for consideration for our next general issue.  We anticipate a general issue to come out in the Winter of 2021.  

Please address any inquires to Matthias Stephan: otherness.research@gmail.com.