CFC: Examining Paratextual Theory and its Applications in Digital Culture

Nadine Desrochers nadine.desrochers at UMONTREAL.CA
Sun Mar 10 11:34:28 EDT 2013

Dear colleagues, 

Kindly find below the CFC for a book project co-edited with Dr. Daniel Apollon of the University of Bergen (Norway). 

My apologies if you receive this more than once due to multiple postings, but we are trying to reach all potential contributors!

Best regards,

Nadine Desrochers

CALL FOR CHAPTER PROPOSALS: Examining Paratextual Theory and its Applications in Digital Culture

Editors: Nadine Desrochers, Assistant Professor, École de bibliothéconomie et des 
sciences de l’information, Université de Montréal, and Daniel Apollon, Associate 
Professor in Digital Culture, University of Bergen

The editorial team invites chapter proposals for a collective interdisciplinary work to 
be published in 2014 by IGI Global.

Proposal Submission Deadline: March 30, 2013

Inspired by narratologist Gérard Genette’s seminal work Paratexts: Thresholds of 
Interpretation (translated by Jane E. Lewin, Cambridge University Press, 1997), the 
paratext framework is now used in many fields in order to assess, measure, 
analyze, and understand the elements that provide the thresholds allowing us to 
“step inside” digital objects. When it was originally published in 1987, Genette’s 
theory pertained to the book, and Genette defined the paratext as those liminal 
devices which wrap or accompany the text in order to make it both present and 
presentable – from titles to tables of content and from footnotes to notebooks.  Yet 
even in 1987, Genette envisioned extensions of the concept of paratext for new 
applications to other medias. Today, this important and far-reaching framework is 
recognized by scholars in many disciplines as a means to study our access to, and 
understanding of Web content, digital arts, online catalogues, database 
architecture, and information practices, to name  a few. This book seeks to revisit 
Genette’s seminal theory for the digital age through a collaborative outlook and an 
interdisciplinary perspective. 

Objective of the Book: 
The overarching goal of this book is to help scholars from various fields find an 
interdisciplinary framework and common language with which to study digital 

Papers should support one or more of the following objectives:
- To review and assess the potential and parameters of paratextuality in relation to 
theoretical frameworks originating in various disciplines, with special attention 
given to digital objects;
- To offer examples of current uses of paratextuality in the study of digital culture 
and digital objects;
- To show and assess critically the value of paratextuality as a unifying framework 
for studying various aspects of digital environments from their architecture to their 
- To propose frameworks with potential applications in many disciplines and to 
discuss analytical, practical and aesthetic implications from an interdisciplinary 
- To offer a rereading of Gérard Genette’ work for the digital context, in order to 
address some of this key theorist’s own, avowed omissions (such as the paratext 
pertaining to translations, accompanying documentary dossiers, illustrations, and 
non-textual material);
- To provide an exploration, and possibly an extension of some of the suggested 
limits proposed by Genette, such as authorial sanction, which now is being 
challenged in the digital context;
- To present an assessment of the necessary considerations needed to make this 
theoretical framework transfer from its original object of study (the printed book) to 
its current, multiple, hybrid, and digital objects of study, which include: scholarly 
communication, citations, born-digital literature, e-publications, movies, games, 
retrieval systems, keyword creation, etc.
- To provide a reference work permitting scholars and students from the multiple 
disciplines using the paratext framework to share a common lexicon and conceptual 
toolbox when referring to the boundaries, limitations, and applications of this 
framework to digital culture. 

Target Audience:
This book is aimed at scholars, students, and professionals working in the following 

Cultural Studies
Digital Arts
Digital Literature
Database Design
Information Architecture
Library and Information Science
Literary Studies
Media Studies
Scholarly Communication
Text Encoding, Markup, and Metadata

Recommended topics include, but are not limited to the following:
Transfer of paratextual theory to the digital age
Competing concepts and frameworks
Texts and documents
Digital culture and materiality
Authorial sanction in the digital age
Creators and information-sharing paratext
Publisher paratext in online environments
E-books and e-publishing
Markup / text encoding 
Classification schemes, keywords, and controlled vocabularies
Non-text retrieval
Online catalogues
Paratextual Web
Platforms and interfaces
Digital obsolescence 
Born-digital objects
Non-textual objects, music, and video
Digital literature
Digital critical apparatus
Digital editions
Digital collections
Digital Libraries
Encoding strategies and standards
Web usage and analytics
Semantic Web
Digital Humanities
Big data
Computer ontologies
Paratext-driven news and event coverage, news syndication
Paratext and trends in social media
Readers and the reading experience
Social media
Collaborative information seeking and sharing as paratext
User comments as mediated paratext
Affect-based paratext

Submission Procedure:
Researchers and practitioners are invited to submit on or before March 30, 2013, a 
1,000-1,200-word (excluding references) chapter proposal clearly outlining the 
objective and proposed methodology, if applicable. The proposal should be 
submitted in English and follow APA guidelines. Full chapters (7,000-9,000 words in 
length before references) will be reviewed on a double-blind review basis. 
Submissions guidelines will be provided. Contributors may also be asked to serve as 
reviewers for this project.

This book is scheduled to be published by IGI Global (formerly Idea Group Inc.) For 
additional information regarding the publisher, please visit 

Important Dates
March 30, 2013: Proposal Submission Deadline
April 30, 2013: Notification of Acceptance
July 30, 2013: Full Chapter Submission
Sept. 30, 2013: Review Results Returned
Oct. 30, 2013: Revised Chapter Submission
Nov. 30, 2013: Revised Chapter Notice of Acceptance
Dec. 15, 2013: Final Chapter Versions Submitted
Inquiries and submissions (Word document, author name removed) should 
be forwarded electronically to:
Corresponding editor: Nadine Desrochers, Assistant Professor, École de 
bibliothéconomie et des sciences de l’information, Université de Montréal
E-mail: nadine.desrochers at

Co-editor: Daniel Apollon, Associate Professor in Digital Culture, University of 
E-mail: Daniel.Apollon at

You can find the CFC on the Digital Culture Research Group website 
examining-paratextual-theory-and-its-applications-in-digital-culture) or on the 
publisher’s website (

Nadine Desrochers, 
professeure adjointe (Assistant Professor)
École de bibliothéconomie et des sciences de l'information
Université de Montréal
C.P. 6128, Succursale Centre-ville
Montréal, QC H3C 3J7 Canada
+ 1 514 343-6111, poste 1290
nadine.desrochers at

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