Calls for Papers

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Revenge is Mad Hard: Fat Ham and the Question of Cultural Reclamation

Deadline for Submission: March 1, 2024

Since its digital debut in April of 2021, subsequent Pulitzer win, off-Broadway run, Broadway run, and recent flurry of regional productions, Fat Ham has taken North America by storm. In re-framing the story of Hamlet from within a Black, southern family barbeque, playwright James Ijames has opened the door for questions about cultural authority, the exchange of cultural capital, mediation, storytelling and adaptation methods, the need for increased representation in canonical stories, the methods through which marginalized voices might reclaim cultural capital, and more.


This essay collection will explore these timely questions. We seek short, thesis-driven essays that consider Fat Ham’s early life (from its Spring 2021 digital debut at the Wilma, to its present regional run). Essays may address a broad range of topics including, but not limited to: Fat Ham as a performance phenomenon, adaptation/appropriation, language, Black storytelling, queerness, mediation, cultural capital, canon, contemporary Shakespeare studies, etc. 


To submit, please send a 250-word abstract and your bio to the editors by March 1. Because the topic of this collection is timely, we will be working on a collapsed timeline. We hope that authors will consider this when submitting. Chapters will be 5,000 - 6,000 words in length, with first drafts due by June 1. The editors welcome any questions or queries authors might have; please contact us: ,


Valerie Clayman Pye is an Associate Professor of Theatre and Chair of the Department of Theatre, Dance, and Arts Management at Long Island University, Post. Valerie’s research focuses on actor training pedagogy, Shakespeare’s Globe, Shakespeare tourism, and on practice-as-research (PaR). Her book, Unearthing Shakespeare: Embodied Performance and the Globe (Routledge) considers how the reconstruction of Shakespeare’s theatre contributes to actor training and the performances of Shakespeare’s plays. She is the co-editor of Objectives, Obstacles, and Tactics in Practice: Perspectives on Activating the Actor (with Hillary Haft Bucs), and Shakespeare and Tourism (with Robert Ormsby). Her essays have appeared in Shakespeare, Teaching Shakespeare, PARtake: The Journal of Performance as Research, New England Theatre Journal, Theatre Topics, and several essay collections. Her latest book is Innovation & Digital Theatremaking: Rethinking Theatre with ‘The Show Must Go Online’ (with co-author Robert Myles) (Routledge 2023). 


Danielle Rosvally is an assistant professor of theatre at the University at Buffalo. Her forthcoming monograph (Theatres of Value: Buying and Selling Shakespeare in Nineteenth-Century New York City, State University of New York Press, 2024) considers the commodification and economization of Shakespeare’s work in America’s nineteenth century. Danielle's interest in the digital has fueled past work on database methodologies in humanist text, social media, and the personification of Shakespeare by performers/users. Her next project, Yassified Shakespeare (co-authored with Trevor Boffone), is a multimedia exploration of how iterations of Shakespearean performance and Shakespeare’s cultural capital critically intersect with drag and drag aesthetics. She is a dramaturge, actor, director, and fight director.