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ebr special issue: visual narratives

I am forwarding this call for papers, a part of which (Part I, Ars Fabula)
may be of interest to people writing about the book arts, specifically about
issues of how to read artistic form & image as narrative (or, perhaps,

charles alexander

>        Call for Papers
>ebr, the electronic book review <http://www.altx.com/ebr/>, is now
>soliciting essays, visual projects and reviews for its upcoming issue on the
>interaction of narrative and image in print and electronic media.  We're
>open to essays in combination with online visual projects that deal with any
>aspect of narrative (narrative theory, cultural criticism, politics, etc.).
>We are especially interested in works that perform the ideas they articulate
>and would most like to see submissions that could do so on-line. Specifics
>and possible starting points are given below.  Please address all
>correspondence to both guest-editors, Steve Tomasula (Tomasula.3@xxxxxx) and
>Anne Burdick (ABINCITE@xxxxxxx).  Deadline for finished work: November 1, 1996.
>Part I, Ars Fabula (Narrative and Image)
>In this section of the issue, we hope to showcase essays in which the visual
>component of a narrative is germane to its interpretation.  The emphasis
>should be on narrative; that is, we are not interested in the artist's book
>that is concerned with purely formal or material considerations:  the book
>itself as art object.  However, we are very interested in the artist's book
>that integrates materials and formal concerns in a narrative, especially as
>these may influence interpretation or structure specific, alternate
>"readings."  The works under investigation can take a variety of forms, but
>some examples might be: works that use the grid of the page/screen and
>typography (in the tradition of Raymond Federman's _Double or Nothing_, Ron
>Sukenick's _Out_, Derrida's _Glas_ or "The Double Session"); works that
>integrate images as part of the narration, such as William Gass's _Willie
>Master's Lonesome Wife_, Rem Koolhaas's _S, M, L, XL_, the Mexican
>photo-novella, or graphic novels such as Art Spiegelman's _Maus_; works that
>use images as glosses upon the text or conversely books that actually  tell
>their stories through images' indirect commentary, e.g. Simon Schama's _Dead
>Certainties_, Carole Maso's _The Art Lover_, Julian Barnes's _History of the
>World in 10-1/2 Chapters_; signal works in the history of text/image
>collaboration, by Fluxus, for example, or the Futurists (Russian and Italian).
>Essays should deal with some aspect of the interaction of word and image,
>i.e., not simply the interaction of two kinds of expression, but of two
>different modes of narration, two languages that are absorbed into a third:
>the metalanguage of the image/text.  How is such work different from other
>types of narrative?  What are its aesthetics?  On what terms is it to be
>discussed, interpreted, critiqued?  What are its ramifications?  For
>example, if an analysis of point-of-view can reveal modernist epistemology,
>what do image-driven text narrations reveal about contemporary culture?  Do
>our values, narative theory, aesthetics, language, ideology inhere in Howard
>Stern's _Miss America?_
>Part II, Ars Electronica (Narrative and Electronic Media)
>In this section we would like to examine text- and image-driven narration in
>the environment made possible by new technologies.  The above criteria apply
>to submissions for this category.  However, here we are particularly
>interested in stories that can only be told, and essays whose arguments can
>only be made, through electronic media.  Thus, if the work under discussion
>could have been done in an older medium, it probably isn't right for this
>More appropriate are issues of literary narration that might have been
>sublimated before, or might have been more applicable to the theater, opera,
>or film. Again, what do narrative elements such as character or plot or
>organization mean in works of multimedia?  What are the poetics of
>hypertext?  What is its rhetoric?  What are we to make of the "found art"
>aesthetic that has entered into fiction?  Of issues like indeterminacy and
>intertextuality?  motion, space, time, interactivity?  What, if anything, is
>narration that incorporates contemporary technology working against? Should
>we reread Wayne Booth?  J. Hillis Miller?  If  book technology placed
>constraints on narrative, what are the constraints of html or the CD-ROM?
>Of the computer monitor?  How do these constraints manifest themselves in
>electronic narrative, and what difference does it make?
>How does all this affect our relationship with the material form.
>Essays submitted to ebr should take up some aspect of "reading," but reading
>in a narrative that is also able to incorporate sound, images, video,
>hotlinks, interactivity.  Emphasis should be on aesthetics or narratology or
>cultural context: the ramifications of a medium that forces us to rethink
>poetics.  Of course, essays that contextualize or historicize media-driven
>narratives are also welcome.
>As always, ebr is interested in reviews of art works, graphic novels, hyper
>novels, performances, recent conferences, or stories that relate to the
>above two themes.
>        Who We Are
>ebr is an electronic book review, an online forum allowing critical writers
>to present their work on the Internet.  We are committed to reviewing
>(literally, seeing again) every aspect of book culture--fiction, poetry,
>criticism, and the arts--in the context of emerging media.  At the same
>time, ebr is a review of electronic books, promoting translations and
>transformations from print to screen, and covering literary work that can
>only be read in electronic formats.  To facilitate print/screen
>collaborations, and as a service to writers whose primary domain is print,
>ebr plans on sharing reviews with various print journals.  Our first two
>issues have appeared as focuses of _The American Book Review_, and
>particular essays are scheduled to appear in various academic and mainstream
>journals (including _Harper's Magazine_).  We'd be interested in hearing
>from editors who would like to discuss arrangements for sharing reviews in
>the future.
>        Guidelines
>For future issues, we are soliciting critical writing not only on, but in
>hypertext.  We are interested especially in exploring narratives whose logic
>is as much visual as verbal, and we prefer thoughtful overviews, polemics,
>and review essays to evaluations of single works.  Authors are encouraged to
>mark up their essaysin html and, if possible, to put them up at their own
>web sites for us to download.  Otherwise, you should send us hard copy and a
>disk (preferably formatted for IBM machines).  If you use a Mac, please
>format the disk for pc use, and save an additional version as a text file.
>Essays should follow the general format of the essays and reviews that have
>appeared in ebrs 1 & 2.  While we have no proscriptions against specialized
>language or scholarly rigor, we request that endnotes be kept to a minimum
>(or that they should be worked unobtrusively into the design of the
>screen-page).  Since we are not a peer review journal, we discourage reviews
>that simply verify an author's or the reviewer's credentials.  We prefer not
>to assign novels to novelists, books of poetry to poets, or academic  books
>to professor-critics.  Interdisciplinary work is encouraged when attention
>is paid to the methods, values, and professional protocols of each of the
>fields under discussion.  References to web sites or online books should be
>accompanied by the appropriate URLs.

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