December 8, 2022
CFP: RACAR special issue “Cripping Visual Cultures”

Call for Papers
Cripping Visual Cultures
RACAR special issue to be published October 2024

Guest Editors:
Lucienne D. Auz, PhD, Assistant Professor of Art History, University of Memphis
Patricia Bérubé, PhD candidate, Carleton University
Jessica A. Cooley, PhD, ACLS Postdoctoral Associate at the Liberal Arts Engagement Hub, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities
Sarah Heussaff, PhD candidate, Université du Québec à Montréal, UQAM
Stefanie Snider, PhD, Independent Scholar

Deadline for proposals: February 1, 2023
Deadline for final contributions: August 15, 2023

“Cripping Visual Cultures” honors the legacy of the late Tobin Siebers’ field-altering Disability Aesthetics (2010) by mining disability’s unremarked centrality to art history and visual culture studies’ methods and systems of valuation. With its crucial turn to conceiving disability as not merely a matter of representation, biography, or biology but also and especially as a style, an aesthetic, and a political tactic, Siebers exposed the previously unacknowledged and yet pivotal role of disability: “disability is properly speaking an aesthetic value, which is to say, it participates in a system of knowledge that provides materials for and increases critical consciousness about the way that some bodies make other bodies feel.”[i]

This special issue is dedicated to confronting the promise but also the pitfalls of what it means to crip visual cultures. We start with the proposition that failing to attend to the politics of disability leaves unrecognized the foundational ways that the art world and its histories are medicalized. Given the propensity toward “inspiration porn” in rhetoric about disabled people, we also consider the potential of an antisocial turn, initiated by queer and feminist disabled activists and scholars in cripped art history and cripped visual cultures, that embraces the negative, minor, and un-celebratory. Further, we understand “crip” as an analytic mode that broadens the critical relevance of disability studies’ inquiry beyond the limiting frame of what is or is not traditionally defined as the proper subject of disability. We hope this special issue will provide an opportunity to take up the difficulty of reconciling an anti-identitarian politics of “crip” at a time when disabled lives are still undervalued not only in everyday life but also in the academy. Additionally, we explore the possibility of collectively reimagining how art objects, art practices, and art institutions can and do produce, challenge, perform, and promote the vertiginous possibilities of “cripping visual cultures” through their collecting, display, and hiring choices, while still also holding onto the political and cultural stakes of the numerous lived experiences of disability.

Drawing on Siebers’ Disability Aesthetics and the growing interdisciplinary field of crip theory, “Cripping Visual Cultures” is intended predominantly to serve as a platform to encourage and support emerging scholars, artists, and critics, while also featuring the work of some established voices. It is most importantly meant to further the field emerging at the intersection of disability studies, crip theory, art history, and critical visual cultures to consider new, difficult, and perhaps even controversial, topics and discourses. RACAR is an international, bilingual journal, and the editors of this special issue seek contributions that reflect this fact. The editors encourage French and English submissions, and welcome supplementary LSQ and ASL materials, emerging ideas, disability neologisms, and creative formats.

Possible key topics may include:

  • Women of color feminism, queer of color critique, transnational, and/or postcolonial feminism
  • COVID-19
  • Abstraction
  • Toxicity
  • Historical and contemporary crip aesthetics
  • Institutional critique
  • Failure and/or the minor/negative
  • Necropolitics
  • New materialisms
  • Crip time
  • Curatorial activism
  • Capitalism/Neoliberalism
  • Affect
  • Austerity
  • Precarity
  • Eco-Criticism/Crip Ecologies

We are soliciting written (maximum 7,500 words, including notes) and creative contributions (maximum 10 images and 1,000 words, including notes). Articles will be submitted to peer review.
Please submit your proposals of a maximum of 300–500 words and a short CV before February 1, 2023, to
If proposing a creative contribution, please include 2–5 images.

Download CFP: RACAR 49.2 Fall 2024 Special Issue CFP English