Portuguese Studies is a twice-yearly MHRA journal which publishes a themed special issue every Autumn. This year, we would like to run a pilot scheme in which young scholars are invited to submit proposals for their own special themed issues. By young scholars we mean: Early Career Researchers (ECRs), Postdoctoral students and PhD students. In line with the Arts and Humanities Research Council, we define an ECR as: “an individual who is within eight years of the award of their PhD or equivalent professional training, or an individual who is within six years of starting their first academic appointment.”

We would like to receive proposals for special issues co-edited by two applicants who want to work together. At least one of these two applicants must be at either postdoctoral or ECR level and at least one must be based in the UK or Republic of Ireland. A suitable member of the Portuguese Studies Editorial Board will act as a mentor for the project(s) chosen. However, the invited team will have full co-editing responsibility and receive full co-editing credit.

We are aiming to publish the results of the successful proposal as our special issue in October-November 2022. Because this is the bicentenary of Brazilian Independence in 1822, and also the centenary of the São Paulo ‘Semana de Arte Moderna’ in 1922 we would like the proposals to reflect this. This could mean, but does not have to mean, working explicitly on the historical or artistic events surrounding either of these dates. Portuguese Studies publishes a wide range of research on the histories, cultures and societies of the Lusophone world. We would therefore be happy to consider proposals for our 2022 special which interpret the potential of 1822 or 1922 broadly and creatively, in national or transnational contexts. We would be open to any of the conceptual frameworks below, or indeed any other interpretation of issues arising from 1822 or 1922, for which a sound academic case is made.

  • Indigenous arts, histories or cultures
  • The black or brown Atlantic
  • Afro-Brazilian arts, histories or cultures
  • Independence
  • Cultural transnationalisms
  • Cultural memory
  • Cinema, photography, digital culture or other visual or audiovisual forms
  • Gender, feminisms or LGBTQ+ histories

We would like to consider proposals at our next Editorial Board in May 2021. Please complete the ‘special issue proposal form’, downloadable from the link in the ‘Themed Issues’ section of our Home Page and send it along with an up to date CV to our Editorial Assistant Richard Correll on: portuguese@mhra.org.uk by 30 April 2021.

All articles in Portuguese Studies must be submitted in English. An issue typically has space for around six articles averaging 7,500 words, or eight articles of 5,500 words. In addition, each issue contains reviews: some of those will be of general publications in the field, but issue editors should also work with the journal's Reviews Editor to ensure that, where possible, each issue also contains reviews directly relevant to its specific topic. All articles are subject to normal peer review, so the acceptance of a themed special issue proposal does not signal automatic acceptance of all papers submitted as part of that issue.

We hope to use this pilot opportunity to launch a future system of regular ‘Young Scholar’ calls for special numbers of Portuguese Studies, edited by ECR colleagues, postdoctoral students and PhD students, along the lines outlined above, and supported by ‘special issue’ editing workshops at the ABIL (Association of British and Irish Lusitanists) Conference.

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