CfP: Rerolling Boardgames – Call for Abstracts

Rerolling Boardgames – Call for Abstracts

Editors:  Esther MacCallum-Stewart (Staffordshire University) & Douglas Brown (University of Falmouth)

The editors seek to assemble an edited collection on the subject of Boardgaming, to be published by McFarland Press, third quarter 2018.

In recent years, boardgaming has not only become a central part of gaming culture, but studies and academic works around it have gradually begun to accrue. Boardgames have not only become more numerous and apparent beyond merely niche audiences in the last decade, but also more diverse in terms of genre, ethos and content – from fast-paced party games to intensely strategic titles. Boardgames are used in a practical sense by academics to teach elements of design and game mechanics, as well as providing an important social glue to geek culture. The rise in events where games are played has happened at both a grassroots level, and through the increased attendance at organised conventions such as Essen Spiel, Gencon and the UK Games EXPO.

Game Studies is also recognising the importance of expanding its remit beyond the digital, especially given the plethora of alternative modes of play and gaming available, and the theoretical, practical and cultural differences in study that these provide.  Boardgames represent a vital opportunity to do this, since they are increasingly lending themselves to numerous readings straddling multiple areas of gaming theory, practice, design and discussion. As Augmented Reality looms large in digital games’ future, and converged board game/digital game hybrids evolve, boundaries between digital and non-digital games fall away.

As yet however, no collected work has explored this plethora of different approaches emerging around the critical challenges that  boardgaming represents. In particular, the emergence of boardgame studies as a discipline in its own right provides an interesting counterpoint to many current discussions in Game Studies.

The authors have wished to assemble this collection for some time, and feel that Game Studies has reached a point of maturity whereby such a study will help further some of the complex debates emerging in this area.

Rerolling Boardgames attempts to address some of the key debates in current Games Studies, and serve as a founding text in this respect for further discussion and theorisation from Boardgames’ perspective. We invite papers that draw from the topics listed below as a starting point from which to direct your investigations.We welcome challenges and alternative perspectives, as well as lively debate within the collection as to the nature and manifestation of boardgaming and its role within a wider culture of gaming and Game Studies.

The collection will have a preface by multi-award winning designer Matt Leacock, author of Knit Wit, Thunderbirds, Roll through the Ages and the Pandemic, and Forbidden series of games.

Abstracts on the following issues or combinations thereof are encouraged:


Game Design, Ludological Perspectives, Close Readings of design or development practices, mechanical readings.


Sociality, Conflict, Competition, Cooperation, Trust/Deceit, Comparative Gaming, Literary Perspectives and Readings.


Autoethnographic and ethnographical studies, Representation, Fandom, Playfulness, Situated Play, Cultural Experiences of Play, Boardgames beyond the Board.


Diversity, Games for Change, Politicisation of Games, Deviant Play,

We also welcome further ideas and suggestions.

We recommend writers to stick to a jargon free, clear, but firmly academically anchored prose.

Abstracts should be 500 words, not including bibliography, for chapters aiming to be approx. 7000 words when complete. Chapters, when submitted, should be written in American English.

 Timelines are as follows:

1st December 2016  – Deadline for abstracts

31st January 2017  – contributors informed of selection

1st August 2017 – first draft due in

1st December – drafts returned for correction by editors

1st March 2018 – final draft

October 2018 – publication

Please send abstracts clearly marked with ‘Rerolling Boardgames’ to both editors :

Esther MacCallum-Stewart:

Douglas Brown:

 We very much look forwards to your submissions, and to the exciting avenues that a collection of this nature will engender.

Assoc. Prof. Esther MacCallum-Stewart (Staffordshire University) and Dr Douglas Brown (University of Falmouth)


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