EVENT Oct 01
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Call for Abstracts: Early Modern Asexualities

Categories: Gender & Sexuality, Literary Theory, Women's Studies, Early Modern & Renaissance
Event Date: 2021-10-01 Abstract Due: 2021-10-01


We are soliciting abstracts for 5,000-6,000-word papers to be included in an edited collection entitled Early Modern Asexualities. We invite people to propose papers that draw on the insights of asexuality studies to investigate early modern English literature and culture. Essays might explore how an understanding of asexuality and aromanticism can complicate and complement historical figurations of celibacy, chastity, abstinence, and intimacy in early modernity, or bring the lens of asexuality to a range of texts and historical figures. We invite our contributors to model different ways that early modern studies can be deepened by the theoretical tools of asexuality studies, including attention to differentiated attractions and to forces of hypersexualization and desexualization, especially as those forces come to bear on racialized and disabled bodies. Papers might offer readings of genre asexually; offer meta-reflections on the omission of asexuality from scholarship on early modernity; or consider the uptake of early modern figures in contemporary ace culture. We also invite essays that explore how the particular shapes of asexuality that we find in early modern texts might help us rethink modern allonormativity (the assumption that everyone experiences sexual attraction) and amatonormativity (the assumption that most people should be striving to be in romantic partnerships or couples). 

If you are thinking of submitting something but want to run an idea by us first, please feel free to be in touch with any of the three editors (Liza Blake, Catherine Clifford, and Aley O’Mara) individually, or with all three of us by emailing TeamRenAsexy@gmail.com. 

Potential contributors are also welcome to consult our Early Modern Asexualities Bibliography, available at https://tinyurl.com/earlymodacebib.

*Abstracts due Oct. 1, 2021*

*Draft essays due June 1, 2022*

Questions? Email the editors at TeamRenAsexy@gmail.com.