I am under contract with Greenwood Press to edit a three-volume, 600,000 word encyclopedia entitled ‘LGBTQ America Today.’ Scope, Purpose, and Audience: This project is envisioned as an interdisciplinary record of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and queer life in the United States over the last 50 years. The emphasis will be on those individuals still living, though there will be enough history to provide the needed context for an understanding of the contemporary situation. Entries will focus on individual figures (Adrienne Rich, Andy Warhol), on key concepts (bisexuality, the closet), historical events that have contemporary relevance (the Stonewall Riots, the Harlem Renaissance), sociopolitical issues (gay marriage), religion and spirituality (Metropolitan Community Church), popular culture (television shows with gay and lesbian characters), etc. The project will keep pace with an ever-changing aspect of American culture, and will place a heavier focus on literary culture than the other similar encyclopedias. At the same time, it will maintain an interdisciplinary approach and will cross-reference relevant entries. This 600,000 word, three-volume work of record will be directed towards academics and students, beginning with high school and extending to the professoriate. Contributors will be asked to avoid jargon.
If you think you might be interested in contributing an entry or entries, please contact me and I will forward to you the full description, including the lengthy proposed table of contents that indicates the words allotted to each entry. I am setting a somewhat arbitrary deadline of Halloween for delivery of first drafts, principally as a sure-fire jog to the memory. Contributors are encouraged to finish well before that (on the other hand, a bit more time may be available if one’s workload has become oppressive).
After looking over the description, let me know what topics you would be interested in covering. Not in your initial request for a look at the table of contents, but in the subsequent expression of interest in writing, INCLUDE SOME INDICATION OF YOUR CREDENTIALS FOR WRITING SUCH ENTRIES. DO NOT SEND ARTICLES UNTIL I HAVE ASSIGNED THEM. When I hear back from you, I will formally assign topics and Greenwood will issue contracts. Those who contribute in excess of 2,240 words will receive a copy of the three volumes.
There are several things we will want to keep in mind in trying to maintain a certain consistency from article to article:
• 1) The audience is broad: beginning with good high school students and extending to graduate students and scholars in the field: Thus: NO JARGON.
• 2) The authorial voice should be lively but academic: I would like a sense of style, but not an overly casual, argumentative, or emotional tone
• 3) Many of the entries, especially biographical ones, are extremely short: in these, no more than one-fourth of the space allotted should be consumed by biographical details: the bulk of all such entries should be an explication of recurring themes in the works (or acts) of the individual in question, and especially as these illuminate contemporary LGBTQ America
• 4) On this last point, note that many historical entries would appear to get short-changed in the word allotment: any history in the book, while absolutely necessary, should be placed principally in the context of how it shapes and continues to influence contemporary America.
• 5) Outside the allotted word-count, each entry should supply at least two, and up to five, references for further study of the topic: these will be gathered into a large Bibliography at the conclusion of the book.
• 6) No quotations are to be included
Once topics have been formally assigned, there may be a few more parameters laid out for the actual composition of the articles, etc. Here follows the full description:
Title: LGBTQ America Today
Rationale: Although homosexuality in its many manifestations has been a significant factor in societies throughout the ages and across cultures, the real explosion of its politics and visibility has taken place in the last 45 years and, arguably, most identifiably within the United States. This three-volume work will trace that history and demonstrate its worldwide implications as one of the sometimes overlooked aspects of the globalization process that, though not only American, is nonetheless heavily identified with and empowered by the current position in the world of the United States.
Advisor Board: Judith Butler, Eli Coleman, Paul Crowley, S.J.,Judith Halberstam, Michael Horberg, MD, Karen C. Krahulik, Ed Stein, Claude J. Summers, Yvonne Yarbro-Bejarano.
John C. Hawley
Dept. of English
Santa Clara University
500 El Camino, Santa Clara CA 95053
T: (408) 554 4956
F: (408 554 4837 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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