Wednesday, 24 November 2010

women make noise

From my inbox. From Julia Downes...

Call for Contributors: ‘Women Make Noise’ edited by Julia Downes

For the Women and Arts series on a new imprint SUPERNOVA BOOKS

General overview:

We are seeking contributors for a new book on music. Women Make Noise will critically explore the past and present participations of women and girls with popular music. Particular attention will be paid to ‘all-girl’ bands. Whilst the media celebrates the spectacles of the girl singer and female-fronted band, ‘all-girl’ bands tend to be marginalised, trivialised and even ignored by dominant journalistic and historical accounts of popular music cultures. Commentary of ‘all-girl’ bands can include doubts over women’s musicianship, anxiety and fear of lesbian/assertive female sexualities, an overemphasis on bitching and bickering amongst band members, and a ‘novelty’ status that constantly marks ‘all-girl’ bands as different from authentic (male) bands. This leaves ‘all-girl’ bands to exist in a contradictory position of opportunity and devaluation in society and culture.

Women Make Noise will critique these mainstream representations of the ‘all-girl’ band to explore alternative accounts of ‘all-girl’ bands; to explore the complexities of creativity, identity, performance, aesthetics, politics, conflict and community at work in women and girls collective music-making. The book will focus on the ways in which music can be used as a radical medium by women and girls in order to contest wider struggles – for instance, of nation, ethnicity, class, sexuality, gender, age and feminisms. Thereby highlighting how ‘all-girl’ bands offer the potential to question and transform society, culture, history and politics. The book will feature informed yet accessible contributions from a variety of writers.

500 word (approx) chapter proposals and 100 word (approx) author biographies are sought from writers on women and girls’ music participations within, but not limited to, the following broadly-defined genres:· Rap and hip hop· Metal· Post-punk· No wave· Punk· Hardcore· Rock· Pop· riot grrrl· Disco· Electro· Girl groups· Noise

Chapters (6,000 words max) should focus on the contributions of ‘all-girl’ groups who write/wrote their own material and play/played their own instruments, though discussion of groups with some male members and of solo artists can be included where relevant. Proposals should (i) outline the musical moment, music-makers and individuals that contributors wish to focus on, (ii) highlight the contributor’s personal connection to the music cultures and communities under discussion and, (iii) outline how the contributor will directly engage with the thoughts, ideas and perspectives of the music-makers and cultural producers to be discussed. Proposals should also highlight how the chapter will meet the overall ethos of the book and also demonstrate the author’s ability to write for a popular and specialist audience.

Proposals and biographies should be submitted by December 31st 2010 to although we welcome submissions in advance of this date.The publishing date for this book is October 2011 and we would require completed chapters from contributors by March 2011 (though the Aurora Metro team can of course help with research and offer feedback prior to this date).

We are also looking for images to be included within the book to be sent to

About the editor:
Julia Downes completed her PhD in British queer feminist music cultural resistance at the University of Leeds in 2010. She has also been a Lecturer in Popular Music at the University of Birmingham and has taught courses on music histories, gender and sexualities at the University of Leeds. Julia has previously published academic and populist articles on riot grrrl and feminist music cultures. Julia currently works for Independent Domestic Abuse Services and plays drums in the ‘all-girl’ band Vile Vile Creatures.

About the publisher

SUPERNOVA BOOKS is a new imprint on Aurora Metro Publications that will explore the arts in innovative ways, giving voice to creative groups and individuals that may be marginalised within their chosen fields. Using digital technology to reach new audiences and looking beyond the mainstream, the aim is to examine the bolder and more extreme creative thinkers as well as those enjoying critical acclaim. The press will launch in March 2011 with a biography of enigmatic actor, writer and director Patrick McGoohan who starred in cult TV series The Prisoner. This will be followed by a series examining the position of female filmmakers, musicians, theatre directors, architects, artists and fashion designers within their chosen sector. These books will explore new talent and profile the work of recognised pioneers in each field placing all within a historical context, examining their influences and asking what the future has in store for them and their contemporaries. Each book will also suggest ways for readers to become actively involved and provide comprehensive resource lists detailing festivals, workshops, online communities and DIY strategies for self-starters.

AURORA METRO PUBLICATIONS is an independent publisher and an arts-based charity situated in an old stable building in Twickenham, Middlesex, England. The company founder and director is Cheryl Robson, playwright, producer and editor. She works with a small staff and volunteers to discover unique and powerful works that demand to be published. She also manages the arts and education projects which the company is involved with in schools, colleges and the community.

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