CFP: Digital Humanities and Russian and East European Studies (Russian Literature)

Deadline for Submissions: September 15, 2016

Russian Literature CFP: Digital Humanities and Russian and East European Studies

We invite proposals for a special issue of Russian Literature dedicated to Digital Humanities and Russian and East European studies. The intersection of the two fields uniquely situates us to interrogate the foundations of Digital Humanities theories and practices, even as we explore new research methods, pedagogical tools, and archival and resource-sharing possibilities.

In the last quarter of a century, Russian and East European studies have seen many transformations in the ways we research, teach, and think about our areas of study. As approaches and critical frameworks have shifted and grown to incorporate new perspectives, so too have the objects of study—and their scope—changed and expanded. At the same time, we have witnessed the dramatic growth of Digital Humanities conferences, Digital Humanities panels at literature conventions, and an explosion of related publications across the humanities, attesting to the fact that more and more students, staff, and faculty are interested in both digital culture and computational tools.

Even a brief overview of the evolving Digital Humanities canon shows a consistent, if often evocative, leaning on Russian Formalism and the theoretical movements that emerged in its wake, including Prague School structuralism, semiotics (the Tartu school), and discourse analysis (the Mikhail Bakhtin circle). While claiming legitimizing theoretical predecessors in the foundational figures of modern literary theory, contemporary scholars relive some of that theory’s evolutions, embattled stances, and fraught histories—from historical poetics to the social turn of discourse analysis. We welcome papers that reflect on the suggestive continuity of Russian and East European Studies with Digital Humanities practices entering critical discourse today. 

We invite proposals across a diverse range of topics and approaches: from critical appraisals to research on literature and culture that shares methodologies with scholars in social sciences, computer science, and statistics. What distinguishes “distant reading” studies from the sociology of literature? How do methodological changes reflect the pressures of the ever-expanding (anti)canons of World Literature? How might Digital Humanities paradoxically draw greater attention to the materiality of textual dissemination, and find continuity with practices of philology and textology that had fallen out of fashion in many fields? What role is played by studies of new media, digital genres, social networks, and online remediations and dissemination? What kinds of computational research, pedagogy, and resource sharing might prove intellectually responsible, ethical, and sustainable? How to engage in Digital Humanities research and pedagogy without falling into reductive models, positivistic claims, and the obfuscation of ideology—with an eye to labor concerns and feminist interventions instead? And how might digital tools allow Russian and East European studies to reach more diverse publics, or to participate in broader public humanities discussions? 

Key terms: Russian and East European Studies; Digital Humanities; Literary and Cultural Studies; Philology and Textology; Reception History; Critical Theory; Media Studies; Digital Genres and Remediation; Networks and Social Media; Subcultures, Piracy, and Hacktivism.

The submission deadline is 15 September 2016 for 500-word abstracts. Prospective authors should submit a short CV along with the abstract. A selection of authors will be invited to submit full papers based on the editor’s evaluation of the abstracts and according to the journal guidelines by 30 September 2016. The deadline for this final submission is 28 February 2017. Acceptance of the abstract in September does not guarantee publication, as all papers are subjected to peer-review. Submissions are accepted in English only. Please submit abstracts to the editor for this issue, Marijeta Bozovic, at Feel free to contact the editor with specific queries or with general queries.