Call for papers: L'Atalante 23 (English)

Title: Desire and Eroticism in Dictatorial Times: Film Strategies Against Censorship in Totalitarian Regimes.

Acceptance of articles for the Notebook section: from March 20th to April 8th 2016.


Films made in any totalitarian regime do not always serve the ideals of the censorship apparatus that monitors cultural production in every dictatorship. Sometimes subversion (with a lot of precautions) becomes an indispensable principle of some artists who continue to work for the cinema of a state that restricts their freedom of expression while searching for strategies to overcome the censorship limitations. As a possible and fascinating field of transgression, volume 23 of L’Atalante pretends to study the treatment of eroticism and all manifestations of desire that exist in opposition to the explicit or implicit censure of said political regimes.

Imaginative solutions while creating a script, different strategies of the mise-en-scène, through interpretive gestures, subversive (and not merely functional) use of offscreen or ellipsis, are only some examples film procedures that pretend to capture the emergence of desire and the liberating power of hidden eroticism in strict moral, religious and disciplinarian regimes.

This volume is therefore focused on the tension created between the representations of sexuality and censorship coercion that has been raised by some films produced under various dictatorships, both during the twentieth century as well as today. Censorship mentality of many totalitarianism was openly opposed to allow an eroticized reading of the relationships between the characters, but we want to show how directors (often with the help of writers and performers) have managed to use imagination and creativeness to transgress dictatorial ideologies. This expression may synthesize the discourse of this volume: Eros despite any censorship.

In summary, this call for papers is destined to papers that talk about films produced under current or past dictatorships anywhere in the world, films that have found strategies to stage and show erotic content as a subversion and opposition to the morality defended by those totalitarian regimes. There may also be cases in which films reveal the impossibility of any transgression, which could work as an implicit critique to the representation system established by political regime.

Possible sub-themes of analysis include topics such as filmic allusions to homosexuality, the emancipation of female desire, gestural subtlety used to cover any forbidden desire, the struggle for liberation of the bodies and, ultimately, the subtle, metaphorical or explicit manifestation of all those erotic elements that a specific dictatorship censors for different reasons related to its restrictive ideology.

We will accept: papers that connect and relate different films (whether grouped by the historical-political or context through a diachronic comparative), analysis of single films, and studies focusing on the career of a particular filmmaker who has worked in the midst of a dictatorship.




Acceptance of articles for the section Notebook: from March 20th to April 8th 2016.

L’Atalante. Revista de estudios cinematográficos accepts the publication of original essays on interdisciplinary or single-topic subjects related to theory and/or cinematographic praxis that stand out for their innovative nature. Some matters to be considered:

  • Only unpublished work will be accepted, it must also follow the journal’s style guidelines and fit the standards and rigour expected from an academic journal.
  • The originality of the topic will be valued, especially if it has already been issued in the journal. The repetition of subjects and themes may be a reason to dismiss a manuscript. The contents of previous issues can be consulted in our webpage.
  • The Executive Editorial Board will submit the articles to a process of external peer-evaluation, which will respect both the authors’ and evaluators’ anonymity (peer review system) in order to prevent potential bias. If the number of proposals received is too high, the Executive Editorial Board will first select the articles that will then be peer-reviewed, dismissing those considered as less adequate. If the initial conditions of originality and style are not fulfilled, the essay will be dismissed without a prior external consultation.
  • The acceptance of a manuscript will be communicated to the author within the following six months.
  • The manuscripts (whose length must be between 5000 and 7000 words including all sections) must be sent through the journal webpage (OJS), saved only in Rich Text Format (.rtf) and using the provided text template. The author’s statement (.pdf) and the images (.psd, .png, .jpg, .tiff) must be attached as complementary files. The detailed submissions guidelines and process can be found in our webpage. Those manuscripts which do not comply with these rules will be dismissed.
  • If it is decided that the manuscript is to be published in a bilingual issue, the author will provide the translation and cover the costs derived from proofreading (in some cases, such as students and unemployed scholars who prove their situation, this cost will be zero).
  • L’Atalante does not offer any compensation for the published articles.

For further information, please contact