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Hello, all!

The Velvet Light Trap is proud to present the CFP 
for our 85th issue: Bad Objects!

The concept of a "bad object" has long been a 
moving target in media studies. Although the term 
is rarely defined with any specificity, a "bad 
object": is typically a text that is used in 
critical analysis with the implicit or explicit 
acknowledgement of its perceived violations of 
"good" taste. Excess, camp, escapism, the abject, 
and negotiations of the margins of mainstream 
culture often mark these objects. The concept is 
important in feminist and psychoanalytic 
theories, as well as in genre studies, in which 
it is mobilized to justify the examination of 
B-horror, exploitation film, or pornography, for 
example. The term has helped challenge 
hierarchies of medium specificity. For example, 
Michele Hilmes has written that television was 
treated as a "bad object" of media studies, a 
sentiment echoed by many other scholars. These 
uses of the term reflect the fact that age, 
class, gender, and race have often been 
motivating factors in the construction of evaluative canons.

Yet the applications of this term have rapidly 
diversified in the past decade. With the increase 
in scholarship on new media, social media, video 
games, and global flows, together with greater 
attention to diverse identities behind/on/in 
front of the screen, the conversation on taste 
cultures has shifted significantly. This issue 
seeks to expand or question the boundaries and 
applications of the "bad object" as an analytical 
framework. We welcome pieces that challenge the 
foundations of this divide. How can we 
re-calibrate these and other approaches to 
address purported bad objects within our 
contemporary media landscape? Can we approach bad 
objects beyond the text itself in issues of 
production cultures, distribution, and consumption?

This issue welcomes submissions that push beyond 
the binaries of "good" and "bad," "serious" and 
"ephemeral," and "high" and "low" culture, 
exploring some of the following themes:

       Malleability of cultural hierarchies  through time and place
       Consumption of bad obbjects 
(hate-watching, so bad it's good, cringe-pop, etc.)
       Teaching with bad objects
       Discourse as bad objects (trade press, fake news, toxic fandoms, etc.)
       Perceptions of formats andd genres as bad objects
       Diversity of reception  contexts 
(mainstream, cult, fan, subversive, revolutionary, and so on)
       Definitions of "bad" in relation to queer 
media, gender, race, class, and ability
       Distribution, exhibition, and transnaational flow of bad objects
       New takes on paraciinema, trash, kitsch, and camp
       Afterlife of bad objects (recirculation, remixing, preservation)

Submission Guidelines
Submissions should be between 6,000 and 7,500 
words, formatted in Chicago Style. Please submit 
an electronic copy of the paper, along with a 
separate one-page abstract, both saved as a 
Microsoft Word file. Remove any identifying 
information so that the submission is suitable 
for anonymous review. Quotations not in English 
should be accompanied by translations. Send 
electronic manuscripts and/or any questions to 
[log in to unmask] by January 25, 2019.

About the Journal
TVLT is a scholarly, peer-reviewed journal of 
film, television, and new media. The journal 
draws on a variety of theoretical and 
historiographical approaches from the humanities 
and social sciences and welcomes any effort that 
will help foster the ongoing processes of 
evaluation and negotiation in media history and 
criticism. While TVLT maintains its traditional 
commitment to the study of American film, it also 
expands its scope to television and other media, 
to adjacent institutions, and to other nations' 
media. The journal encourages both approaches and 
objects of study that have been neglected or excluded in past scholarship.

Graduate students at the University of Wisconsin 
at Madison and the University of Texas at Austin 
coordinate issues in alternation, and each issue 
is devoted to a particular theme. TVLT's 
Editorial Advisory Board includes such notable 
scholars as Hector Amaya, Ben Aslinger, Caetlin 
Benson-Allott, Aymar Jean Christian, Lisa 
Dombrowski, Dan Herbert, Lucas Hildebrand, 
Deborah Jaramillo, Roberta Pearson, Debra Ramsay, 
Bob Rehak, and Avi Santo. TVLT's graduate student 
editors are assisted by their local faculty 
advisors: Mary Beltran, Ben Brewster, Jonathan 
Gray, Lea Jacobs, Derek Johnson, Shanti Kumar, 
Charles Ramirez Berg, Thomas Schatz, and Janet Staiger.

Thank you for your time, and we look forward to your contributions!

Sincerely,

The UT Austin The Velvet Light Trap Editorial Board

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