INCITE Journal of Experimental Media #7
Editors: Astria Suparak & Brett Kashmere
Submission Deadline: August 1, 2016
Release Date: 2017
The intersection of sports, performance, spectacle, popular culture and experimental media will be the focus of INCITE‘s seventh issue.
For millennia, sports have been intrinsic to daily life, physical well-being, civic identity, and social harmony. That presence has expanded in the last century to occupy entire sections of newspapers and news hours, in turn begetting 24-hour television channels, talk radio stations, and endless punditry. Lately, sports have assumed a larger, more multidimensional place in our culture, advancing, for instance, further into the fields of contemporary art and film. The traditional schism, and often times, antagonism (jocks vs nerds, square vs cool) between sports and art have been blurred. Sports are now seamlessly integrated with pop culture, celebrity culture, music, and fashion trends. Meanwhile, ancillary aspects of sports have nearly eclipsed the sports themselves. In the information age, fans are the new experts, gambling with likenesses, and athletes are sets of statistical profiles and avatars. Sports economies are shifting towards the virtual; the daily fantasy site FanDuel paid out more than $500 million in cash prizes last year, new streaming platforms have emerged for live viewing of video game play, and eSports leagues are increasingly lucrative.
In the era of flashy data visualization, instant analysis, Twitter journalism, Insiders, the rumor mill, the superfan, and the hot take, experimental media can offer a critical tool for addressing deeper meanings, concerns, connections, and contradictions. And for representing the poetics and aesthetics of athletics. Among the many dimensions of sports, we seek essays and artwork that address, in the context of residual and contemporary media practices:
- Sports as Identity: Racial and gender politics, masculinity, nationality, class, ability, prowess, discrimination, respectability politics, the super-/sub-human
- Sports as Entertainment: Spectacle, consumption, commodities, trading, mascots, merchandise, spectatorship, pageantry, unscripted drama
- Sports as Form: Geometries, fields, time-structures, rules and regulations, color and design, movement, speed, framing, unity
- Sports as Fantasy: Simulation, gaming, vicarity, utopic communities, fandom, objectification, gods and goddesses
- Sports as Creative Expression: Improvisation, touchdown celebrations, dunk contests, weirdness, style, artistry, visualization, storytelling
- Sports as Pleasure: Corporeality, adrenaline, sensuality, eroticization, fetishization, beauty, elegance, leisure, winning, rituals
- Sports as Metaphor: War, politics, religion, power, education, myth, narrative
- Sports as Progress: Activism, racial integration, Title IX, boycotts, resistance, political correctness and incorrectness (i.e. Native American and Confederate mascots, penalizing of racist and homophobic slurs), off-field discipline
- Sports as Labor: Exploitation, ownership, in/subordination, free agency, unions, power and abuse, performance, discipline, coordination, practice
- Sports as Information: Analytics, big data, statistics, metrics, combines, scouting reports, gambling, odds-making
- Sports as Failure: Losing, losers, participation trophies, second place, failed leagues (ABA, ABL, USFL, NFL Europe, XFL, WAFL, WHA, NASL), body failure/injury
- Sports as Technology: Doping and pharmaceuticals, virtual reality, CourtVU, equipment, surgery, prosthetics, hyperbaric chambers
- Sports as Event: Olympics, Paralympics, Battle of the Sexes, Summit Series, Super Bowl, World Cup, X-Games, All-Star Games, Skills Competitions
We are also interested in analyses of recent sports-themed experimental films, videos and new media projects; reassessments of historical works that feature sports; against the grain readings of sports histories, athletes, and media; infographics and photo essays; and writing that reframes existing narratives about sports, illuminates new perspectives, or shifts the way that sports are typically considered and discussed.
Texts, artwork, GIFs, proposals, and queries can be emailed to info (at) incite-online.net with the subject line, “Submission for #7”. For further details about our editorial policy and submission guidelines, please consult the Information section of our website: incite-online.net/informationweb.html