CfP Issue 30: Creative Resistance


I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge — even wisdom. Like art.” - Toni Morrison. (No Place for Self-Pity, No Room for Fear, included in the 150th anniversary issue of The Nation.)


2019 emerged as a year of unprecedented political mobilization which led to the beginning of a new political culture characterized by protests and civil disobedience. Dissent erupted in cities across the world, and protesting voices grew louder as public fury occupied the streets, from Paris to Prague, Beirut to Catalonia, in Hong Kong, Santiago, Tehran, Baghdad, Budapest, New Delhi, and even London.


The 30th issue of FORUM aims to look at Creative Resistance and how it emerges in different forms, in different cultures. What do you think Creative Resistance means? Who do you think has defined art as political and used it to voice dissent? What forms of art have been used to challenge the status quo and how have they endured, evolved and transpired?

In this global landscape of a rapidly developing political culture, protests are creating spaces for art which questions and thwarts the status quo. Keeping 2019 in mind, we are looking for papers that deal with subjects pertaining but not limited to:


  • art as political,
  • street art and activism,
  • protest music,
  • representation (or the lack of it) of the ‘Other’ in mainstream popular culture,
  • signs and motifs of resistance that have been used and re-invented, and which have become symbols,
  • hip-hop as a political movement,
  • avant-garde in cinema,
  • post-colonial readings of the canon,
  • poets and authors who have reclaimed and redefined the canon.


From Toni Morrison to Bob Dylan, Kendrick Lamar to Salman Rushdie, Allen Ginsberg to Agnes Varda - we are looking for papers discussing authors who have focused on art as resistance, how protest culture gives rise to creativity nurtured by the conflict between "the police forces of so many ideologies" (Camus) and how in turbulent times like ours, it gives us hope.


Papers must be between 3,000 and 5,000 words in length, and book reviews around 1,250 words, formatted according to MLA guidelines. Please e-mail your paper, a short abstract and your academic CV in separate, clearly labelled DOC(X). files to by 10th April 2020. All eligible articles will be peer-reviewed prior to publication. Only one submission per author per issue is permitted. FORUM is a peer-reviewed journal for postgraduate students working in culture and the arts. Authors must be current postgraduate students, or must have completed their postgraduate degree no more than three years ago.


We will also be selecting an artwork for the issue cover on the website, so send us your ideas!