CFP: Birth and its Meanings: Representations of Pregnancy, Childbirth and Parenting


Demeter Press is seeking submissions for an edited collection
Birth and its Meanings:
Representations of Pregnancy, Childbirth and Parenting

Editors: Dr. Nadya Burton


Representations of pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, loss and early parenting are simultaneously diverse (grounded in different social, religious and cultural contexts), and normative (they tend to reflect the status quo, and often romanticized notions of these profound life events). This collection will explore diverse cultural representations of childbirth and related events in an effort both to unpack and unsettle stereotypical representations, as well as to engage representations that challenge, transgress and resist cultural norms. Reflections on a wide range of cultural representations will be included (literature, poetry, film, television, reality tv, painting, sculpture, new media, photography and others). Creative works (narrative, images) will also be included in the book. A focus on the ways in which cultural representations can reflect and reinforce as well as resist and challenge relationships of power will be central to the analysis in this collection. The collection will address the ways in which race and ethnicity, age, dis/ability, sexuality and family formation, gender and class are taken up in representations of the childbearing year.

Topics can also include (but are not limited to):

Representations of queer pregnancy and birth in popular culture; trans men bearing children - beyond Thomas Beattie; representations of racialized mothers; representations of breastfeeding - beyond the romantic mother-infant bond; Aboriginal representations of pregnancy, childbirth and motherhood; invisibility of pregnant folks with disabilities; what reality tv teaches young pregnant women about childbirth; birth poetry, Hallmark and beyond; images of non-traditional paths to parenting, adoption and surrogacy; non-European art.

We welcome papers from a variety of disciplines and perspectives. Both theoretical (written) and creative (narrative and image) submissions will be considered.

Submission Guidelines
Abstracts: 250 words, and a 50-word biographical statement
Abstract Deadline: January 15th, 2014
Please send submissions or inquires directly to:
Nadya Burton (

Completed manuscripts of 15-18 pages will be due June 1st, 2014, and should conform to MLA guidelines.

Acceptance of abstracts is contingent on peer-review and dependent on the strength and fit of the final piece.

Demeter Press
140 Holland St. West, PO 13022
Bradford, ON L3Z 2Y5 Tel: (905) 775-9089 /

Disclosure: I am getting a complementary membership to MIRCI and subscription to the journal in return for posting these updates. It is, however, something I would have agreed to do for free because I think their work is so wonderful.