Call for Papers: Philament 27: “Otherlings”

11 January, 2021


We are pleased to announce our call for papers for Philament 27: “Otherlings.”



In the 2017 science fiction novel An Unkindness of Ghosts, nonbinary author Rivers Solomon depicts a conversation between two gender nonconforming characters. The protagonist, Aster, describes their friend Theo as “an anomaly of a man.” In response, Theo proposes, confidingly, that they are perhaps “not a man at all.” With this, Aster concurs: “Aye. You gender-malcontent. You otherling.” 

The history of the noun “otherling” is relatively short. Modern usage seems to have begun in the 1950s when the term appeared in sci-fi magazines such as Space Science, where it was used to describe a particular species (the “Otherlings”). Since then and into the twenty-first century, the word “otherling” has remained largely ensconced in sci-fi and fantasy literature, where it typically denotes a strange being with unique or exceptional qualities.   

With the theme “Otherlings,” this volume of Philament invites authors to reengage with the longstanding philosophical and theoretical formulation of the Other, defined as a being who is alien to the Self or as a figure who is excluded from dominant social structures. 

In the spirit of what Jacques Derrida called “paleonomy” (the “maintenance of an old name in order to launch a new concept”), the editors invite contributors to consider whether the use of a term like “otherling” (or other strategies) might reconfigure—or fail to reconfigure—notions of otherness and othering. Is othering destined to remain disempowering and violent? And, to paraphrase Gayatri Spivak, can the Other speak? Or are they always speechless?

Though the call for papers is broad and flexible, examples of topics of particular interest to the editors include the following:

— The colonial othering of Indian people in the literature of the British Raj
— Artificial Intelligence as other in science fiction
— Queerbaiting and the silencing or othering of queer voices in heteronormative literature
— Tokenism and postcolonial forms of othering in Western literature and narrative media
— The divine as eroticised other in religious fiction 
— Postcolonial othering of Indigenous Australians in Australian literature
— Reclamations of otherness in transpositive narratives (for example, in The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert and Kinky Boots)
— The othering of female bodies and women’s pleasure in literature, including in Victorian-era erotica

All submissions must conform to the submission rules and guidelines outlined at

Due dates

For article submission, the issue editors are inviting authors to submit abstracts before submitting full articles. Abstract submissions close April 1, 2021. We anticipate final essay-length article submissions will be due on approximately July 20, 2021. Other categories of submissions (excursions, reviews, etc.), may be submitted at any time by email to

Submission portal

If you are ready to submit your abstract, please navigate to




Announcement: Philament 26: Bodies of Work

18 November, 2020


It is commonplace to note that 2020 has presented a range of seemingly insurmountable challenges, most of them so rendered by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In spite of this, I am pleased to announce the publication of Philament 26: Bodies of Work, the single issue of Philament for this year. The theme of the issue, Bodies of Work, might be thought to strike an apt note during the pandemic, when our bodies have been compelled to perform a special kind of work, a regime of biological self-surveillance that has drawn attention to the vulnerability of our immune systems.

But even in this testing context, many of us have continued to maintain our ordinary commitments; and those who have contributed to this issue are testament to that. In terms of “works,” the typeset version of the volume runs to some 162 pages, so it is by no means a small achievement. The volume consists of no fewer than 8 peer-reviewed articles and 2 excursions. 

I would like to thank the special issue’s editorial team—Isabelle Wentworth, Vivien Nara, and Ruby Kilroy—and I would like to express my gratitude and thanks to all who have contributed to the volume. In addition, I would like to extend my thanks to SUPRA, without whose support we could not have produced the volume.

We anticipate publishing a short run of copies in the near future, so please email the journal at, or message us on Facebook or Twitter, to arrange to purchase a copy. We are also happy to provide copies to libraries or special collections on request.

We hope you enjoy this special issue of Philament.


—Chris Rudge, Managing Editor



Call for Papers: Philament 26: “Bodies of Work”

19 November, 2019


We are pleased to announce our call for papers for Philament 26, “Bodies of Work.”



Literary critics and scholars from the wider humanities have long foregrounded the body as a locus of inquiry—from feminist and postcolonial theorists to those heralding the “new material turn.” These perspectives are consonant with current models in the cognitive sciences and philosophy of mind that destabilise old binaries of mind/body and subject/object. At this intersection, concepts of embedded, embodied, and extended cognition interact with theories of transhumanism and posthumanism in ways that make us question the limits of the body and the demarcation between mind, body, and world. In addition, the digital age has brought new meaning to the body, throwing up new ontologies and new ways of thinking. Considering the breadth and scope of these intersecting perspectives, this volume of Philament provides a venue for different disciplinary approaches to the body, including cognitive, cultural, or creative approaches. Possible themes for articles, creative works (Excursions), and reviews include:

  • Political bodies: surveillance, body politic, feminist and postcolonial perspectives
  • Biological bodies: pathology, affect/emotion
  • Bodies of work: textual, archival, historical
  • Performative bodies
  • Bodies and identity
  • Embodied cognition: cognitive science, linguistics, philosophy of mind
  • Digital or new bodies
  • Transgressive/radical bodies
  • Environmental bodies: bodies as ecosystems and ecosystems as bodies
  • Legal and/or ethical rights of bodies

All submissions may be sent as an email attachment in .docx format (Microsoft Word) to All submissions must conform to the submission rules and guidelines outlined at

Submissions close January 25, 2020.

Philament publishes scholarly articles up to 8,000 words, creative works (“Excursions”) of all kinds, including multimedia works, up to 2,500 words, and book reviews broadly relevant to the theme up to 2,000 words. Submissions should be original, not previously published, and not under consideration elsewhere. Scholarly articles must include endnotes and conform to our style guide, as detailed on our website. Please see for more information.



Peripheral Imaginings: An Exhibition and Launch

9 October, 2019

To launch our new website, and to celebrate the publication of Philament 24 “Peripherality” and now Philament 25 “Revisions,” volume 24 editor Ben Eldridge curated an exhibition and reading night at the University of Sydney on 2 October, 2019. Photos from the event appear below.

I would like to thank Ben for his contributions to Philament in the last year, and to congratulate him on his success. And, on behalf of the broad Philament community, I would like to extend my thanks to all the authors and artists who read or exhibited their works on the evening.

The full gallery of photographs may be viewed on Facebook here.

—Chris Rudge




Philament 25: Revisions

26 September, 2019


Over the last year, Philament has been redeveloping its new website in collaboration with Sydney-based web and print designer Elle Williams. We are now excited to launch the website, which features articles and other contributions in both PDF and html (screen-readable) formats.

At the same time, we are excited to announce the publication of Philament 25: Revisions. The volume contains a detailed editorial, three peer-reviewed articles, two poems, and a book review. Many thanks to all contributors, as well as volume editors Ella Collins-White, Jennifer E. Nicholson, and Samantha Poulos for their effort in preparing and developing this long-awaited volume. We anticipate publishing a short run of copies of the volume before the end of the year.

You will see that many articles are currently only available in PDF format. We are in the process of turning all of the past articles into html format, and anticipate finishing this process in early 2020. We hope you enjoy the new website.

—Chris Rudge