CFP: Comics and Space

Comics Forum 2017
Leeds Central Library
September 21 - 22, 2017
Stichtag: 01.07.2017

The ways in which comics employ and occupy space(s) are diverse, but the concept of space, conceived broadly, serves as a unifying theme in discourses around the medium that spans from the smallest formal micro-analyses to the broadest international conceptions. Scott McCloud famously asserted in Understanding Comics that ‘Space does for comics what time does for lm!’ and the role of space in the composition of a comics page has proven a fruitful area of discussion as Comics Studies has developed.1 Yet space’s function is not con ned to the gutters, and we can also usefully ask questions about the spaces, literal and metaphorical, in which comics sit in cultures and countries. Given recent work by Bart Beaty in Comics versus Art and Beaty and Benjamin Woo in The Greatest Comic Book of All Time, we might ask how comics can seek to make space for themselves within existing elds such as ne art and literature. By what mechanisms can comics open up gaps in seemingly consecrated spaces such as the literary canon and locate themselves therein? How do comics nd space for themselves in places such as public libraries? Are the spaces that comics occupy delimited by national borders or do they exceed them, and if so, how? Comics Forum 2017, the ninth event in the conference series, will seek to address these questions and others, and we invite abstracts addressing the subject of comics and space.

Subjects for discussion may include, but are not limited to:

  • Space on/in the comics page
  • Changes to spaces in comics over history (e.g. through layouts)
  • Negative space (within images/panels or pages/layouts as a whole)
  • The role and nature of the gutter
  • The depiction of space
  • Comics as space
  • Space and time
  • Comics and geography
  • Comics and architecture
  • Comics and travel
  • (Inter)national comics
  • Comics’ cultural capital
  • Disciplinary spaces, and comics’ interactions with them

Proposals of 250 words are invited for talks of up to 20 minutes in length. The deadline for submissions is the 1st of July 2017, and you will receive notification of acceptance by the 14th of July.
Please go to to submit your proposal for this year’s conference.
Proposals for panels of either 60 or 75 minutes are also welcome. If you wish to submit a panel proposal, please make sure you check the box ‘Panel Submission’. Make sure you include an indication of the panel’s length and biographies of all your speakers in your abstract.

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