CfP: Video games and the 1980s – Cogent Arts and Humanities special issue

Cogent Arts & Humanities welcomes submissions to a special collection of articles exploring video games and the 1980s.


Cogent Arts and Humanities – Call for Papers

Special issue: Video games and the 1980s

Guest editors: Alex Wade and Nick Webber

Deadline for submissions: 8 February 2016



Video games truly entered the public consciousness in the 1980s. From arcade machines in supermarkets to microcomputers used for bedroom coding, video games infused quotidian spaces.  From counterfeit computers beyond the Iron Curtain to the arcades of Broadway and everywhere in between, videogames brought diversity in play to crystallize awareness around the importance of computer technologies to everyday life.

This collection of papers will examine the impact of videogames on these spaces and times, their position within the national and international socioeconomic context and their legacy to society and culture in the 21st century.

Authors may wish to consider the following questions when preparing submissions:

  • how were popular microcomputers such as the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum received in various national contexts, including practices such as counterfeiting and alterations to hardware?
  • what was the influence of movements like Germany’s and Scandinavia’s ‘demo scene’ on the contemporary video games industry (both at home and overseas)?
  • how did conditions and practices in Japan and the US come together with government regulation to shape video game culture in import markets such as Korea?
  • how did the emergent ‘hobbyist’ markets in countries like Australia act back upon established hobbyist practices elsewhere?
  • how were video games positioned within the wider socio-economic context of the cold-war, the rise of silicon technologies and changing political stances by governments of the time?

We welcome research articles, critical essays, and review articles drawing on archival research (e.g. papers and books written at the time) and, where feasible, including primary research (e.g. interviews with developers, players, publishers, journalists etc).

Cogent Arts & Humanities conforms to the highest standards of open access publishing and publishes articles quickly after a rigorous and constructive process of peer-review and editing. All articles will be freely available to anyone across the Internet.

To submit your work, please visit the journals’ dedicated online submission system:

The deadline for submissions for this special collection is 8th February 2016.

During the submission process you will be able to confirm that your work is intended for the special collection on videogames in the 1980s.

If you have any questions, queries or comments, please contact

We look forward to working with you to bring exciting new scholarship to the widest possible audience.


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