FSNNA23 Call for Participation


Fan Studies Network North America 2023 Virtual Conference

October 11-15, 2023

The 2023 Conference

With everything that’s happened worldwide in the last few years, it often feels like we’re still regaining some semblance of equilibrium. We’re constantly re-connecting with social circles, re-engaging with different publics, re-invigorating personal interests, and re-inventing how we participate in cultural practices. We can also see these forms of movement echoed in fandom, as fans create novel forms of engagement and play, or perhaps find old ones re-spun in fresh new ways.

As the FSNNA conference is virtual again for 2023, we continue re-thinking how academic events can proceed and re-fashioning our own approach in pursuit of greater equity and accessibility across fan studies. With this year’s theme, the 2023 FSNNA conference is dedicated to exploring various forms of re-making in fandom. We are especially interested in work that considers how fan activities and fanworks re-shape our spaces, expectations, and experiences.

Submissions for the 2023 FSNNA Conference

We warmly welcome submissions from early career researchers and graduate students, as well as established scholars. Likewise, contributions are welcomed from across disciplines, and need not be limited to just fan studies: we are interested in work from media studies, the humanities, the social sciences, library science, and more. We also encourage contributions that consider all forms of fandom. This may include specific media texts (e.g., film, television, print texts/series, games, video streaming, etc.), other fan-objects (e.g., sports, music, celebrity culture, etc.), specific national or regional contexts, theoretical approaches to studying fandom, investigations of fanwork genres or fan practices, and more.

 Some potential topics that we hope to see submissions for include (but are not limited to!):

  • Re-connecting: fandom mid-pandemic, moving offline or staying online
  • Re-inventing: new (or new uses of) networks, platforms, and fandom institutions
  • Re-invigorating: old fandoms in new contexts, rediscovering media texts
  • Re-engaging: seeking and finding community post-pandemic
  • Re-thinking: approaches to studying fandom, fanworks, or fan practices
  • Re-appraising: considering fandoms, fans, and anti-fans in light of cancel culture and other transgressive contexts

We are also looking to continue and expand on making FSNNA a discussion-based conference, in order to facilitate further learning and dialogue. Read on to see what we’re looking for from participants this year! 

Format of the 2023 Conference

To encourage multiple opportunities for discussion, all participants for this year’s conference will be asked to submit both 1) a talk and 2) a poster. If accepted, participants will be assigned to a panel for the talk, which will be a discussion alongside other speakers; and also a timeslot just to be available near the poster to discuss this work with attendees who stop by. Having everyone submit a multimedia “poster” will allow other attendees to engage with your work asynchronously in our virtual exhibit hall. 

So for clarity: if accepted, you’ll be responsible for both a poster and a talk, rather than choosing between the two formats. Here is what these two terms means for the 2023 FSNNA conference: 

TALKS: These are short and highly focused, more like “opening comments” on your work instead of a traditional conference presentation that covers the whole project. A talk should be between 5 and 7 minutes long, and you do not need slides or a highly formalized script. In fact, you can think of your poster (see below) as slides for your talk. Talks will be assigned to a panel of 3 to 5 thematically-linked speakers, and together the talks on a panel should foster discussion, including questions and comments between speakers and from audience members afterward. 

POSTERS: These are visuals-focused summaries of your work that allow you to go into more detail than the short-length talks. We are open to different formats and lengths (e.g., a 1-page infographic, a ~3 minute video, ~5 slides, and more are all acceptable; see examples from a past conference in the “Multimedia” section here: link). Posters will be assigned to a specific section of our virtual conference hall, and each participant will be asked to be present by their poster for a ~1 hour pre-scheduled window, so that other conference-goers can stop by to ask questions about their work. 

An easy way of understanding this change and why we made it is this: think of your poster as if it were the slides for your talk!

Submissions will be due by Saturday, July 1.

NOTE: As in past years, we also welcome the submission of pre-constituted panels, or a group of 3-5 talks that are already organized around a shared topic, text, and/or method. There will also be a section on the submission form for these. This year, though, the organizers of pre-constituted panels are asked to ensure that all participants prepare both a talk and a poster. 

Submission Details

Ready to submit your work for FSN-NA 2023? Here’s what the application form will ask for: 

  • Confirmation that you are committing to the new format: both talk and poster
  • An abstract of ~250 to 300 words 
  • 5-7 keywords that describe the project of your talk and poster (may include the topic, text, theory, method, etc.) 
  • Your bio (~50 words) 

Get Ready for the 2023 Conference! 

Thank you for reading this call for participation; we’re excited to consider your work for the 2023 FSN-NA conference!

 Still have a question? Please feel free to contact us at fsnna.conference@gmail.com. We’ll also be posting updates on Twitter.

 Ready to submit your work? Visit our submission form here.

(Or if the link above doesn’t work, copy and paste this into your browser: https://forms.gle/26aUjhofDNmb9gGs9)