Working the Circuit: Cultural Studies of Florida
Guest Editors: Aisha Durham, Wesley Johnson, and Sasha Sanders, University of South Florida
Florida figures prominently in the US American imaginary. It is a spectacular state of escape for spring breaking coeds, disneyfied kids, and sun-seeking “snowbirds” who flock south among resettled retirees, new migrants, longtime locals, and Indigenous communities to cocreate a cultural mélange of cosmopolitan, coastal, and country sensibility. Long before a presidential New Yorker relocated to a rebranded neo-confederacy, news media and new media already reduced its carnivalesque oddity to a meme. This special issue departs from shorthand comedic snapshots of the Sunshine State by providing methodologically thick, fleshy interpretive analyses that take seriously its cultural politics, people, and popular forms.
It attends to the aims and scope of Departures in Critical Qualitative Research by privileging experiential, experimental, and embodied approaches represented as personal narrative, textual experience (Durham, 2014), intersectional and decolonial cultural critique, performative writing, mystory, and critical autoethnography. “Working the Circuit” invites inventive research about cultural practices, products, policies, and performances by drawing from the canonical circuit of culture model (du Gay, Hall et. al, 1997), which emphasizes the interrelated nature of culture and power permeating each key moment.
“Working the Circuit,” is a timely special issue for two reasons: It highlights meaningful conversations about the state when it will take center stage during the upcoming presidential election, and when it will become the home-base for big fan communities with WrestleMania 36 and Super Bowl LIV. In addition to national popular and political events, local conversations about cultural difference, climate change, precarity, and participatory democracy in Florida set the stage for broader ones in US American society. In both spheres, Florida is a site of critical inquiry that is timely and important to the development of contemporary cultural studies.
Suggested topics for the special issue include, but are not limited to, the following:
– Claws (2017-present)
– Climate change
– Cultural citizenship
– Cultural difference
– Culture wars
– David Makes Man (2019)
– Disney, Disney World, or Disneyfication
– Dream Defenders and #BlackLivesMatter
– Freakshows and carnivals
– Glocalization and transnationalism
– Intracultural and intercultural contact zones
– Jane the Virgin (2014-2019)
– Mass shootings (Parkland, Pulse)
– Migration and immigration
– Moonlight (2016)
– Most Expensivest (2017-present)
– Music culture
– Reality television
– Serial killers (Howell Donaldson, Ted Bundy)
– Social media activism, social movements
– Space and race relations
– Sports and game culture
– Spring break
– Youth culture
1.15.2020: Deadline for 100-word abstracts sent to firstname.lastname@example.org (“Circuit” in subject line)
2.12.2020: Notification of acceptance
3.30.2020: Deadline to upload manuscripts to the ScholarOne Manuscripts site for Departures
5.18.2020: Deadline to submit revised manuscripts
5.01.2021: Publication of special issue
Manuscripts should be formatted in Microsoft Word and conform to the Chicago Manual of Style, 17th ed. (2017) with endnotes. Manuscripts should be prepared in a 12-point common font, should be double-spaced, and should not exceed 7,000 words including tables, captions, and endnotes. Visit the journal page for additional information about the form, format, and organization of the full manuscript.
Departures in Critical Qualitative Research is a peer-reviewed journal. Submitted manuscripts will be reviewed by a Special Issue Editorial Board and should not be under review by any other publication venue. To inquire about this special issue, please contact:
Aisha Durham, Associate Professor
Department of Communication
University of South Florida
4202 E. Fowler Avenue, CIS1040
Tampa, FL 33620
Aisha Durham is an Associate Professor of Communication and 2019 Fulbright-Hays Fellow at the University of South Florida. She is a cultural critic who uses autoethnography, performance writing, and Black feminist-informed intersectional approaches to examine power, identity, and popular culture. Research about hip hop feminism is published in her monograph, Home with Hip Hop Feminism: Performances in Communication and Culture, and her edited books Globalizing Cultural Studies: Ethnographic Interventions in Theory, Method, and Policy, and Home Girls Make Some Noise! Hip Hop Feminism Anthology.
Wesley Johnson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Pasco-Hernando State College and a doctoral student in the Department of Communication at the University of South Florida where he uses critical media studies and autoethnography to examine white rage, masculinity, and policing in popular culture.
Sasha Sanders is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Communication at the University of South Florida. Her embodied, reflexive approach to exploring media and culture engages Black feminist thought, critical cultural studies, and performance studies in Communication.