CFP: Star Bodies and the Erotics of Suffering 2013

Posted by on Apr 2, 2013 in Critic's Area | 1 comment

Stardom - Film Poster

From H-NET List for Scholarly Studies and Uses of Media <>

CFP for Star Bodies and the Erotics of Suffering

1-page (250-500 words) Proposal with short bibliography and short bio due by April 15, 2013.

Completed draft 4,000-6000-word manuscript due May 20, 2013
Revised draft due May 30, 2013

Email word document to Dr. Rebecca Bell-Metereau at
or Dr. Colleen Glenn at

We are seeking one or two more essays on stars of racial or ethnic minority backgrounds—preferably female—whose careers speak to the theme of personal suffering or transformation. The essay will a chapter in a collection, Star Bodies and the Erotics of Suffering, already under preliminary contract (hence, the tight time frame for a proposal, draft, and revisions).

The collection deals with a variety of stars whose images are marked by physical transformation or who have mined personal/offscreen suffering to some effect onscreen. For instance, essays already accepted for the collection include essays on Mickey Rourke, Natalie Wood, Joaquin Phoenix, Julia Roberts, and Rock Hudson. We hope for proposals on such stars as Hattie McDaniel, Halle Berry, Dorothy Dandridge, Katy Jurado, Jennifer Lopez, or Cameron Diaz, though we are open to other suggestions.

It is common wisdom that an actor’s ability to project an enduring image—both symbolic and physical—over the course of a career often predicts box office success and celebrity. Movie stardom is inherently associated with continuity, yet what happens to stars who struggle to maintain a stable screen identity, who wish to break away from typecasting, who suffer in their personal lives, or grow old over the years onscreen? Such stars disrupt the narratives around which their star personas have been constructed, offering film scholars a rich opportunity to address issues of casting, audience expectation, and the tensions at play between an actor’s double role as human individual and iconic symbol.

In Star Bodies and the Erotics of Suffering, we interrogate this notion of the continuity-image as we examine the struggles of individual stars to transform their iconic identities and to manage and mine the suffering they experience both onscreen and in their personal lives. A variety of contributors examine how stars suffer, age, or change onscreen and off screen, focusing on those moments or periods in which the continuity of the star persona is disrupted or damaged.

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