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Call for Contributions: Feminist Imaginaria: Beyond Realism

This CFP is also available here, at the Centre for Research in Humanities and Social Sciences.

Conference date: 17 April 2021

The Queens, Leeds, United Kingdom

Please note that the conference date is provisional and subject to change due to the epidemiological situation with the COVID-19 pandemic. We will not open a fee payment system until we are sure we can host the event. Please do not book flights and accommodation before the conference date is confirmed by the organizer.

Femspec Journal and The Centre for Research in Social Sciences and Humanities, in partnership with Intellect, are seeking abstracts of 250-300 words for papers or creative works in any medium–poetry, fiction, film, TV, dance, theatre, music, opera, social media, gaming,  graphic novels, or genre–surrealism, science fiction, magical realism, gothic, horror, fantasy, myth, folklore, rock, punk, etc, that challenges gender using tools that go beyond realism using the speculative exploration of any kind including supernatural or utopian/dystopian framing, posing the “what if,” making gender-bending solutions to contemporary global social and cultural issues, using imagination and fantasy to pose resolution to these problems showing how the problems grew from lack of alignment of power relations between the sexes in the first place.

We encourage submissions of single papers, of panels of three to four papers, and creative works. Themes and questions to be explored might include (but not limited to):

  • Sci-fi in popular television

  • Gender in Black Mirror, the Outcasts, Misfits, the Sarah Jane Adventures, etc.

  • What would happen if women had the power to imagine the world? What new kinds of institutions would emerge and what obstacles? How might we meet and overcome those challenges?

  • What can we learn from The  Handmaid’s Tale, in any of its forms–novel, film, television series? or The Testaments?

  • Historically, women have imagined worlds before. What are the lessons to be learned from how these texts have worn with time: The Furies, The Wanderground, Demeter Flower, Motherlines, Parable of the Sower? Female Man?

  • How did the journey of the Enterprise change when its Captain became a woman? Or did it?

  • How did the plots change when Doctor Who became a woman? Or did they? What propelled that change? How do you account for the reaction of the fan base?

  • Are the superheroines in series like SuperGirl every really allowed to save the world? Why, and how? Or why not?

Submissions of abstracts (up to 300 words) with an email contact should be sent to Dr. Batya Weinbaum ( and Dr. Martina Topić ( by 30 November 2020. Decisions will be sent by 30 December 2020 and registrations are due by 03 January 2021.

The registration fee is £200 and it includes,

  • Conference bag and folder with materials

  • Meals and drinks during the conference

  • WLAN during the conference

  • Certificate of attendance

  • An opportunity to publish a paper in conference proceedings


Two special numbers of a journal will be edited, one issue on arts and literature for Femspec and one for an Intellect journal (depending on submissions to the conference)

For more information about Intellect journals see here:

Centre for Research in Humanities and Social Sciences is a private organisation originally founded in December 2013 in Croatia (EU). Since July 2016 the Centre is registered in Leeds, UK. Please note that this is a grassroots initiative to overcome bureaucracy of big conferences and to allow an opportunity to participants from the Third World to present their paper due to language help provided by the organizer who proofreads and edits proposals before sending them to review. Thus, the conferences are international and attended by participants from all over the world, however, these conferences are not massive and impersonal as the entire conference organisation is a ‘one-woman show’ (Dr Martina Topić, The conferences provide a good networking opportunity in small groups of like-minded scholars.

Participants are responsible for finding funding to cover transportation and accommodation costs during the whole period of the conference. This applies to both presenting and non-presenting participants. The Centre will not discriminate based on the origin and/or methodological/paradigmatic approach of prospective conference participants.

Visa Information

The Centre will issue a Visa letter to participants with UK entry clearance requirement. The British Home Office has a very straightforward procedure, which is not excessively lengthy and the Centre will also issue early decisions to participants with Visa requirements.

Image: Lesbians on Television by Kate McNicholas Smith, available through Intellect.

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