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(If you are interested in pitching a review of some specific current work or performance, please contact the appropriate section editor.) We prefer careful analysis of the chosen subject matter with the intention of supporting an original thesis; we aren’t particularly interested in articles that merely want to promote their subject. An assessment of what ideological work a given pop culture phenomenon performs (i.e. what has allowed something to become popular, what’s at stake in its popularity besides money, how it is situated in a historical or geographical context, etc.) is especially welcome. Ideally essays will draw on sophisticated interpretive strategies derived from a theoretically informed point of view, but will be presented for a general reader in lively, accessible language.

For examples of the diversity of topics and range of approaches we welcome, please have a look at PopMatters features and columns archives.

Pitch Deadline: 4 April 2015
First Drafts: 20 May 2015
Final Essay Deadline: 15 June 2015
Contact: Erin Giannini and Karen Zarker
Email: egiannini37@gmail.com / zarker@popmatters.com
Email subject line: Doctor Who: Contents & Contexts

Doctor Who holds the distinction of not only being the longest running sci-fi series, but also one of the longest running prime-time series, ever. While numerous scholarship (both academic and non) has examined both the original series (1963-1989) and the rebooted series (2005-present), we are seeking to examine the historical and cultural contexts of the series, including topics such as the “missing” episodes, the show’s place on the BBC, its global transmission, and branding of the series. (We will not be covering analyses of fandom or individual episodes.)

With the intent of providing continued intelligent and entertaining content in the PopMatters’ Columns section, we are looking to broaden our staff of columnists and the voice of our writers’ community. We’re particularly interested in writers who live and work outside of the US, but that is not a deciding factor; in all cases, no matter the writer’s locale, we’re looking for those who can approach an array of cultural subject matter from their patch of the world with an international sensibility; that is, contextualize the local with an awareness of its place, historical and current, in the broader world.

Qualified writers are already readers of PopMatters (as but one vital supplement in their varied intellectual diet). They are familiar with the work of our current columnists, as well as other areas of the magazine, and they have a solid sense of what we’re looking for in content and caliber in these essays. We deliberately use the terms “essays” and “columns” interchangeably; as pieces are broad in scope yet grounded in real-world examples, and they are tied to regular deadlines and an established identity (and therein lay the “columnist” element). With these expectations in mind, we have monthly and every-other-month column slots available. Suitable writers are dedicated to regular deadlines and enjoy participating in friendly, ongoing communications with their editor.

by Karen Zarker

23 May 2013


Ethan Hawke in Michael Almereyda's Hamlet (2000)

PopMatters seeks feature essays (min. 1,200 words - no max. limit) arguing the pros and cons of anachronism in film, literature, video games, music and other products of pop culture.

Flash Points provides a critical overview of cultural trends and developments. As the title indicates, Flash Points is a direct response to issues raised within the media. It critically covers topics with a broad purview, ranging from latest news to new film trailers.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

"Island of Lemurs: Madagascar" Is Cute but Spooky

// Short Ends and Leader

"This flick is a superficial but eye-popping survey for armchair nature tourists.

READ the article