Call for chapters: Literary Disability Studies goes Online (abstract due 1 January 2014)
Some of the most significant developments in critical disability studies in recent years have come from the directions of both literary theory and internet studies. This edited collection seeks to bring these disciplines together to explore the internet-literature interface and its significance to disability studies.
In Narrative Prosthesis: Disability and the Dependencies of Discourse David Mitchell and Sharon Snyder argue that disability is a ‘prevalent characteristic of narrative discourses’. Since then, culturally based analysis within disability studies has been concerned with the way disability is used like a prosthesis to prop up narratives. At the same time, the broader field of literary studies has been influenced by the internet and world wide web with digital and electronic literature becoming an increasingly important part of the twenty-first-century canon. Yet despite celebrations to the contrary, much of the internet remains inaccessible to people with a variety of impairments.
The book will consider the ways the web relies on established literary practices but has also created new forms of literature and disability’s continuing role as a narrative prosthesis in this new literary arena in terms of both representation and access.
For example, blogging as an internet specific form of literature holds much significance to critical disability studies. Significantly, an investigation of disability blogging and the impact of impairment on blogging decisions (Goggin and Noonan, 2006) was included in the first critical study of the ways blogs are used by different groups of people (Bruns and Jacobs, 2006) and emphasized the importance of accessibility and alternative formats. According to Goggin and Noonan, ‘the Internet, and blogging in particular, offer new modes for people with disabilities to author, communicate, consume, and exchange in their preferred medium or media.’ This book will build on these insights along with the increasingly converging online environment to consider the continuing importance of literature to current debates about disability.
Possible topics include (though not limited to)
• Online activism
• New forms of writing/ literature
• Inspiration porn
• Increased access to literature
• Disability communities online
• The move from a text based medium to one dominated by image, video and sound
• The internet as a new subject for literature
• People with disability as wreaders and/or produsers
• Alternative formats
• The role of ‘comments’ in creating a disabled voice
• Disability as click bait
• Travel blogs
• Illness narratives
• Extraordinary bodies
Send abstracts of 300-350 words and a short bio to Katie.firstname.lastname@example.org before 1 January2014.
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