Thursday, January 12, 2023

CFP: Revisiting Radway

With thanks to Azteclady, who alerted me to this call for papers/submissions:

Still Reading Romance

deadline for submissions: March 15, 2023
full name / name of organization: Kathleen Kollman

Editors: Josefine Smith, Shippensburg University,; and Kathleen Kollman, Miami University, 

Overview: Based on initial research performed by Janice Radway for her groundbreaking work, Reading the Romance (U of NC Press, 1984), this collection’s co-editor Josefine Smith designed an updated version of Radway’s survey, targeting romance novel readers. After two distributions, the result was over 300 responses and a raw data set which is now shareable to interested contributors to this volume. This survey includes questions on the following topics: Romance Reading Habits, the Romance Genre, the New Adult Fiction Subgenre, and Demographics.

Contributors will be free to analyze the data through whatever relevant lenses they choose, with an eye toward exploring how mores, interests, readership, and the romance novel itself has changed and developed over the nearly forty years since Radway conducted her original research. This will be a book-length peer-reviewed volume. Contributors from all disciplines are welcome and encouraged to submit, and the editors are interested in all types of research methods and theoretical perspectives. Both affiliated and independent scholars are encouraged to submit, as are early-career researchers.

Topics of particular interest include:

  • Women and gender studies research

  • Reader response research

  • Mixed methods research that spins off from the original survey

  • Direct comparison with Radway’s original research

  • Shifting cultural norms in popular fiction representation

  • Genre theory research

  • Romance novel readers’ engagement with feminism and gender equity.

This is not an exhaustive list.

For more information see 

The call for papers does say that people thinking of submitting can ask to see the data in advance, which I think is helpful as it may be that potential contributors might have issues with the questions, spot something they wouldn't have expected in the data etc and that would affect their submission.

I don't know the editors, but I did find one paper by Kathleen Kollman in the RSDB (it was a paper presented to a conference at Bowling Green University in 2018).

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