CFP: Romanticism and Heavy Metal

CFP: Romanticism and Heavy Metal

The editors Julian Knox and James Rovira welcome chapter proposals for the forthcoming anthology Romanticism and Heavy Metal. Like the collections Rock and Romanticism: Blake, Wordsworth, and Rock from Dylan to U2 (Lexington 2018), Rock and Romanticism: Post-Punk, Goth, and Metal as Dark Romanticisms (Palgrave Macmillan 2018), David Bowie and Romanticism (Palgrave Macmillan 2022), and Women in Rock, Women in Romanticism (Routledge 2022), Romanticism and Heavy Metal seeks to interpret heavy metal as a cultural, artistic, and musical phenomenon using the historical insights and theoretical tools provided by the study of Romanticism. 

As in previous collections, “Romanticism” is broadly conceived as a cultural, literary, artistic, philosophical, and musical movement first identified and named in the late eighteenth century without being limited in scope to that period. As a result, the relationship between metal and Romanticism should not be considered only in terms of influence: metal is or can be Romanticism in the present. “Heavy metal” is conceived as a late twentieth-century world musical phenomenon inclusive of a wide array of sub- and micro-genres that has its origins in the sonic and thematic innovations of 1960s and 70s bands such as Iron Butterfly, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Judas Priest, and Metallica that continues into the present.

Chapters considering historically significant heavy metal bands that engage with Romantic works and themes are welcome, as are analyses of Romanticism in relation to metal subgenres including, but not limited to, doom metal, black metal, death metal, thrash, grindcore, folk metal, the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, power metal, and noise.

Contributors seeking to define Romanticism outside of its usual eighteenth- to nineteenth-century periodization are encouraged, but not required, to consult Romanticism Against the Tide of Modernity by Robert Sayre and Michael Löwy (2001). Chapter topics might include, but are not limited to, 

  • Romantic Satanism and heavy metal
  • Romantic paganism and heavy metal
  • Green Romanticism and heavy metal
  • Brown Romanticism and heavy metal
  • Individual author / painter / musician / band / album / music video comparisons
  • Nineteenth-century musical Romanticism and heavy metal
  • Romantic folk traditions and folk metal
  • Working class Romanticism and metal
  • Romantic celebrity and heavy metal 
  • Adaptations of Romantic texts in heavy metal albums
  • Romantic visual art as album art
  • Romanticism, metal, and political/social/environmental action
  • Reception studies and fan communities
  • Representations of apocalypse, post-apocalypse, and the world without us

Chapter proposals should be approximately 500 words in length, demonstrate familiarity with scholarship in both Romanticism and heavy metal, and should be accompanied by a one-page CV. 

Please email all proposal materials by February 2023 James Rovira at jamesrovira at gmail dot com

If you need flexibility with proposal or chapter deadlines, please describe your needs in an email. 

Active CFPs, Rock and Romanticism

Following on the heels of the recently published Rock and Romanticism: Blake, Wordsworth, and Rock from Dylan to U2 (Lexington Books, February 2018) and the soon to be published Rock and Romanticism: Post-Punk, Goth, and Metal as Dark Romanticisms (Palgrave Macmillan, April 2018), I’ve issued two more CFPs for future Rock and Romanticism editions.

I’ve extended due dates, which will remain flexible. Click the link above to the Blake and Wordsworth edition if you’d like to see what a completed volume looks like.

CFP: Women in Rock / Women in Romanticism

Check out the CFP for Women in Rock/Women in Romanticism.

CFP — David Bowie and Romanticism

Check out the CFP for David Bowie and Romanticism.

 

CFP (Anthology): Rock and Romanticism

CFP: Rock and Romanticism

NOTES: 

  1. I have set up a blog dedicated to the Rock and Romanticism anthology: https://rockandromanticism.wordpress.com/. When this page is no longer pinned to the top of this blog, all future updates on the anthology will have been migrated to that location. 

2. The August 1st deadline for proposals has passed. However, I plan to send my first proposal out to a publisher by August 15th at the latest, so I can still accept proposals through August 8th. Please contact me by August 8th if you have an idea but cannot send me a proposal until after August 8th.

3. This page is continually being updated as I receive proposals or ideas for proposals. Please check the list below for topics covered. I am happy to accept more than one essay about the same figure, but of course these essays need to take different approaches. 

4. I was on the road from July 5th to July 14th. There may have been delays responding to your queries and proposals during that time. Please accept my apologies.  

The editor of Rock and Romanticism is soliciting essays about the ways in which rock music, broadly defined, expands, interprets, restates, and conflicts with Romanticism, broadly defined. “Rock music” as a category will be extended to include all popular music since the 1950s, including but not limited to rock, varieties of metal, R&B, soul, varieties of punk, folk, techno, progressive rock, indie, new wave, alternative, psychedelic, industrial, gothic, funk, country, and blues. If the music has been written or performed since the 1950s and you’re wondering if it fits, the answer is “yes.” [1] For the purposes of this study, “Romanticism” will also be broadly defined, considering trans-European, trans-Atlantic, and global Romanticisms as well as Romanticism in literature, art, and music.

You can see a list matching potential musicians and Romantic-era literary figures, a provisional bibliography, and a sense of how I’m theorizing Romanticism on the blog post “Romanticism and Rock.”

Papers might consider

  • women in rock and women in Romanticism;
  • lyric poetry and song lyrics or song lyrics as lyric poetry;
  • readings of rock and Romanticism that compare
    • conditions between Europe during the Napoleonic wars and conditions in the post-McCarthy era and/or post 9-11 United States,
    • the 1960s or later Ireland or the UK, or
    • 1960s or later continental Europe, including Eastern Europe and the Baltic states (any possible essays on Rammstein and Romanticism?);
  • the gothic in literature and in music;
  • opera and the rock opera;
  • drug use, drug literature, and drug music of the eighteenth, nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries;
  • the pastoral in Romantic literature and in rock music;
  • adaptations, interpretations, direct responses to, and performances of Romantic-era texts by twentieth-century and later musicians;
  • the figure of Satan in Romanticism and in rock;
  • protest literature and protest music;
  • sexual identity in Romanticism and rock.

Ideal papers will theorize or historicize their subjects in a way that places rock music in a coherent dialog with Romantic-era art, literature, or music, contributing to a consideration of the boundaries or definition(s) of “Romanticism” as an artistic mode while also considering the implications of chronological, national, social, sexual, and/or economic difference. Papers from contemporary artists/musicians reflecting upon the influence of Romantic-era art, literature, or music upon their work are also welcome.

Please email a 250-500 word proposal that includes your name, title, institutional affiliation (if applicable), mailing address, email address, and a brief, updated CV to jamesrovira@gmail.com by August 1st, 2015. Completed papers, which should be within the 5000-7000 word range, are expected by November 15, 2015.

You can see a list of artists and poets with a provisional bibliography on the blog post “Romanticism and Rock.”

I have received notice of interest or proposals for the following figures:

Musician/Artist Romantic Era Connection Status
The Beatles/Sgt. Pepper’s Wordsworth Proposal received and accepted
David Bowie, Ziggy Stardust Blake and Keats Proposal received and accepted
David Bowie and Brian Eno (late 70s) Wordsworth/Coleridge, Lyrical Ballads Proposal received and accepted
Nick Cave Romanticism/gothic and sublime Awaiting proposal
Nick Cave Romanticism/transgressive artist Proposal received and accepted
60s Dylan (not comprehensively) Blake and the Beat poets Proposal received and accepted
Dylan Keats and Shelley, or just Shelley Proposal received and accepted
Woody Guthrie, Ballads of Sacco and Vanzetti Theorizes Guthrie’s ballads using Sayre and Lowy’s “Figures of Romantic Anti-Capitalism” Proposal received and accepted.
The Herd (early Peter Frampton), perf. Paradise Lost Milton and Blake Proposal received and accepted.
Mick Jagger, 1969 Jagger reading Shelley’s Adonais Proposal received and accepted
Iron Maiden Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” Awaiting proposal
Aimee Mann Mann as a Romantic figure as theorized by Cavill Proposal received and accepted
Marilyn Manson’s Triptych Blake and Bryon Proposal received and accepted
Morrisey and Bowie Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Proposal received and accepted
Norwegian Black Metal Primitivism/return to nature Awaiting proposal
The Pretenders, Pretenders William Blake, Vision of the Daughters of Albion, comparing female responses to male aggression and passivity. Proposal received and accepted.
Martha Redbone’s Roots Project William Blake Proposal received and accepted
Lou Reed, The Raven Edgar Allan Poe Proposal received and accepted
Rolling Stones, “Sympathy for the Devil” Milton’s Satan Awaiting proposal
Rush Rush and Romanticism Proposal received and accepted
U2, Songs of Innocence Blake Proposal received and accepted
U2, Songs of Innocence and Leonard Cohen Blake Proposal received and accepted
Van Morrison VM himself as a Romantic poet, comp. to several Romantic-era figures, particularly Blake Proposal received and accepted
Various: the 60s Various: the 60s as a Romantic era Proposal received and accepted
Various: 60’s era apocalypse Various: the Romantic era and apocalypse Proposal received and accepted
Various: 80s New Romanticism Various: English Romanticism Proposal received and accepted
Various: a contribution by the author/director of a staged version of Werther set to music by Lou Reed, Florence and the Machine, Rhianna, etc. Goethe, The Sorrows of Young Werther Proposal received and accepted.
Various: Pathetic fallacy in rock and Romanticism. AFI, Finch, La Dispute, etc. Various: Blake and Wordsworth Proposal received and accepted
Various: songs of the open road, including Joplin, Springsteen, Dylan, and Berry Various: Songs for the Open Road anthology Proposal received and accepted
Tom Verlaine/ post-punk Romantic-era responses to Napoleon Proposal received and accepted
Women in Rock (Janis Joplin, Joni Mitchell, Carole King, Stevie Nicks) Women in Romanticism (Mary Shelley and Charlotte and Emily Brontë) Proposal received and accepted
Neil Young and Jackson Browne These musicians as Romantic poets, compared to Blake, Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats Proposal received and accepted
4AD Records’s This Mortal Coil project (includes The  Cocteau Twins) Walpole, Beckford, Shelley and Lewis Proposal received and accepted

[1] Except for disco, because disco sucks.

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