aspeers is the first and currently only peer-reviewed print journal for MA-level American studies scholars in Europe. It is a platform for the best work done by American studies graduate students below the PhD level. It aims to foster academic exchange among young Americanists across Europe, and to thereby advance the field as well as its genuine European perspective on ‘America’ and its presences and effects around the world.
aspeers features a general section in addition to a topical one that brings academic and creative works into a dialogue on one common theme. For the upcoming issue, this topical section will be organized around different notions of "American Memories." Please feel free to send in work to have it considered for publication in aspeers if
- you are an American studies student at a European university and are looking to publish a paper without a topical restriction.
- or you are an American studies student at a European university and are looking to publish a paper on "American Memories."
- or you are an artist looking for a venue for work that deals with "American Memories."
Please see the following Calls for Papers for details. Please also note our style guide at www.aspeers.com/style that will give you many helpful instructions on how to prepare your submission for maximum success.
|academic contributions [general]||due 31 October 2012||html | pdf|
|academic contributions [topical]||due 31 October 2012||html | pdf|
|open submission section||due 25 November 2012||html | pdf|
For the general section of its fourth issue, aspeers seeks outstanding academic writing demonstrating the excellence of graduate scholarship, the range of concerns scrutinized in the field, and the diversity of perspectives employed. We thus explicitly invite revised versions of term papers or chapters from theses written by students of European Master (and equivalent) programs. For this section, there are no topical limitations. Contributions should be up to 10,000 words (including abstract and list of works cited). The submission deadline is 31 October 2012.
“Never forget.” Shortly after the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, this phrase, along with pictures of the Twin Towers set against the backdrop of an American ﬂag, appeared on T-shirts, coﬀee mugs, mouse pads, and a whole host of other marketable goods. In many ways, these cultural artifacts and their treatment showcase the intricate interweaving of such concepts as nationalism, identity, trauma, narrative, and consumer culture within the complex of “American Memories.” In fact, fueled in part by innovations in such diverse ﬁelds as historiography, neuropsychology, museum studies, and political science, the number of panels, conferences, seminars, as well as articles and books published on diﬀerent notions of memory has seen a rise in American studies and other ﬁelds in recent years: ‘Memory’ has become one of the buzzwords in the humanities and social sciences. aspeers 6 (2013) seeks to collect and present the best MA-level work on the topic of “American Memories.”
Concepts and performances of memories and related concepts such as remembering, forgetting, nostalgia, and trauma provide for a wide variety of approaches. Analyses span the ﬁeld from history and social sciences to literary and cultural studies, psychology and philosophy, media and ﬁlm studies, geography, the arts, and others. The sixth issue of aspeers, then, oﬀers unique opportunities for critical thought and analysis in these areas, but also speciﬁcally for interdisciplinary inquiries.
Memories, whether passed on from relatives or evoked in the public sphere, perform crucial cultural work and have tremendous social signiﬁcance. They play and have played a pivotal role in deﬁning American identities. Creating and maintaining collective memories is a question of political and discursive power, an exercise in ideology. This process is essential in nation building, constructing oppositions and animosities, creating heroes, villains, and myths. Personal, communal, and national identities are shaped by what oﬃcial history writing and other discourses about the meaning of the past choose to emphasize. Marginalized groups, in fact, have often framed their struggles for equality as one of correcting omissions in national narratives, of insisting on rewriting national memories.
For the social sciences, the topic of “American Memories” provides particularly fertile grounds for research. History writing at large, of course, oﬀers a huge arena for constant interrogation and renegotiation of processes, constructions, and performances of remembering and forgetting. Moreover, arguments about what constitutes the proper approach to dealing with memories are omnipresent, ranging from politicized debates about monuments to widespread anxieties about digital memory and its consequences for privacy and data protection policies.
As a medium of storytelling, literature, in the broadest sense, creates particularly complex conceptualizations of memories; it can face the past in uniquely creative ways. From the historical novel and the trauma narrative to documentary ﬁlms, alternate histories, and period piece TV shows, (auto)biographies and creative nonﬁction, much, if not all of literature can be said to constitute a self-reﬂexive engagement with the past and modes of memory. In fact, one way of conceptualizing the hotly contested body of works called ‘American literature’ is to regard it as a speciﬁc collection of “American Memories.”
aspeers, the ﬁrst and currently only graduate-level peer-reviewed journal of European American studies, encourages fellow MA students from all ﬁelds to reﬂect on the diverse roles and meanings of memories in American culture. Please note that the contributions we are looking for might address but are not limited to the topical parameters outlined above. We welcome term papers, excerpts from theses, or papers speciﬁcally written for the sixth issue of aspeers by 31 October 2012. If you are seeking to publish work beyond this topic, please refer to our general Call for Papers. Please consult our submission guidelines and ﬁnd some additional tips at www.aspeers.com/2013.
With its sixth issue, aspeers is aiming to cast a thematic spotlight on the myriad meanings of ‘memories’ in relation to American(ized) cultures. Memories, whether passed on from relatives or evoked in the public sphere, perform crucial cultural work and have tremendous social significance. They play and have played a pivotal role in defining American identities. Focusing on “American Memories,” then, aspeers 6 seeks to investigate the intricate interweaving of such concepts as nationalism, history writing, identity, trauma, and narrative with different notions and performances of memories, remembering, forgetting, and nostalgia.
Connecting personal and public spheres, this topic lends itself particularly well to creative exploration and artistic expression, unearthing and communicating meanings to which academic writing does not have access. Therefore, aspeers 6 welcomes submissions of creative work examining the manifold processes, constructions, and performances related to “American Memories.”
A list of possible contributions includes, but is certainly not limited to:
- photography self-reflexively investigating the medium’s construction of allegedly ‘true’ memories;
- collages (text, audio, or any other material) questioning the presumed linearity of history;
- journals or videos communicating the roles that memories and trauma play in narrating lives;
- short stories or poems focusing on memory or centering around the issue of remembering;
- or any other artistic exploration of the topic: the open submission section is a decidedly experimental space.
We will consider all submissions regardless of the author’s institutional affiliation, geographic location, or level of study. Non-printable material selected for publication will be included on the journal homepage. Plastic art will be on display in Leipzig at the issue’s launch ceremony and will be presented as still image in the paper and online edition.
Please consult our submission guidelines, an editorial timetable, as well as additional information at www.aspeers.com/2013. To be considered, contributions must be in by 25 November 2012.cfp_2013_topical.pdf cfp_2013_general.pdf cfp_2013_art.pdf