ASAP/Journal Special Issue: Autotheory

Due Date: 05-01-2020

ASAP/Journal seeks critical and creative contributions for a guest-edited special issue on autotheory. Fusing self-representation with philosophy and critical theory, autotheory moves between the worlds of theory and practice, often exceeding disciplinary boundaries, genres, and forms. This special issue embarks on a rigorous investigation of the autotheoretical impulse as it moves across medial, disciplinary, and national borders from the 1960s to the present. In dialogue with scholars, artists, and activists, this issue will broach these central questions: What are autotheory’s conditions of possibility, and what are the political, aesthetic, and cultural effects of this theoretical turn in contemporary cultural production? What are the underlying assumptions and implications of understanding autotheory as a genre, framework, performance, or practice? What kinds of reading might it invite or preclude? This issue is especially concerned with BIPOC, feminist, queer, trans and gender nonconforming, and anticolonial and decolonial approaches to autotheory, and the politics and ethics therein. From social media technologies and the publishing industry to the academic industrial complex and its varied, often ambivalent alternatives, autotheory’s escalating ubiquity serves as a critical provocation: why “autotheory” and why now?

This special issue seeks approach autotheory transmedially and transnationally, reflecting on its evolution and circulation as a way of bringing theory to life and life to theory. We seek contributions relating to the global contemporary arts in any medium. Autotheoretical approaches to writing are encouraged. Rather than entrench a single definition or approach, we aim to facilitate dialogue that parses autotheory from diverse critical perspectives and geographical contexts. ASAP/Journal invites 6,000–8,000-word articles exploring autotheory in ways that may include the following:

  • Alternative modes of historicizing “autotheory”
  • Alternative approaches to defining autotheory
  • Indigenous autotheory and decolonial possibilities
  • Autotheory in non-Western practices and contexts
  • Trans, queer, feminist, and BIPOC autotheory
  • Autotheory, ideology, and neoliberalisms
  • Autotheory, accessibility, and questions of access
  • Autotheory, canons, and anticanonization
  • Autotheory and pedagogy
  • Autotheory and translation
  • Autotheory and disciplinary boundaries and genres
  • Autotheory’s theoretical legacies
  • Autotheory and adaptation
  • Autotheory and autofiction
  • Autotheory and art criticism
  • The ethical issues of autotheory
  • The politics and aesthetics of narcissism
  • Autotheory and identity politics
  • Ideas of antimemoir

Completed essays are due by 1 May 2020. Please e-mail queries or abstracts to the ASAP/Journal editor, Jonathan P. Eburne, at For additional submission guidelines, please visit