Queer Feminine Affinities


 Edited by Alexa Athelstan & Vikki Chalklin 


Call for Submissions


Deadline 31st July 2013


Queer Feminine Affinities aspires to become the first collaborative book that collects a diverse variety of written and visual materials by, on and for femme, queer, alternative and subversive feminine voices and communities emerging from within the UK.

Inspired by collections like Joan Nestle’s (1992) The Persistent Desire: A Femme Butch Reader,  Chloë Brushwood Rose and Anna Camilleri’s (2003) Brazen Femme, Ulrika Dahl and Del LaGrace Volcano’s (2008) Femmes of Power, Jennifer Clare Burke’s (2009) Visible: A Femmethology, and Ivan E. Coyote and Zena Sharman’s (2011) Persistence: All Ways Butch and Femme, amongst other engagements with femme and queer femininities, Queer Feminine Affinities warmly invites written and visual materials that reflect on femme, queer and alternative femininities as an embodied lived experience, identity and imagined community. The collection is particularly interested in reflections that can contribute to, challenge and expand on the established legacies of these wonderfully rich anthologies.

Whilst the aforementioned collections originate from and discuss femme and queer feminine identities within a largely American context (aside from Ulrika Dahl and Del LaGrace Volcano’s Femmes of Power, which covers both American and European spaces), Queer Feminine Affinities aims to engage queer feminine voices and communities existing and emerging in the UK. The collection asks to what extent conceptualisations and lived realities of femme, queer, alternative and subversive femininities have travelled and translated along transnational lines of queer inheritances, and where our paths have diverged and our figurations have been reinvented to take fresh forms. Most of all, however, the collection simply aims to provide a printed space in which a diverse variety of feminine identified voices and perspectives can mingle in creative dialogue, discussing topics that are close to our queer fem(me)inine hearts!


With this in mind, Queer Feminine Affinities welcomes contributions that reflect on any of the following topics and beyond:


Identities, Embodiment, Orientations, Identifications and Affects

  • Queer Feminine Orientations and Disorientations. How do queer feminine identified persons find their way in the world? How did you arrive at your femme, queer or alternative feminine identity or community? Do our orientations, once arrived at, stick or change?
  • Affects. What do you love and desire, or hate with a passion? What are the shapes of queer feminine vulnerability, anger and empowerment? Considerations of queer feminine shame and pride.
  • Inspirations, Muses, Heroines and Anti-Heroines. Who and what do you adore, identify and feel an affinity with (or disidentify with) and why?
  • Legacies, Inheritances and Divergences.
  • Femme-inist Theories, Politics and Activism: On the Streets and Between Paper Sheets.
  • Styles, Aesthetics, Fashion, Objects and Consumptions.
  • Gender Performance, Stylisation, Identities and Embodiment.
  • The Art of Queer Feminine Failure.
  • Anti-/Normativities  and Anything In-Between.

Reflexive, Intersecting, Situated and Positioned Perspectives

  •  ‘Race’, Ethnicity, Whiteness, Racisms and Anti-Racisms. Perspectives By, On and For Queer Feminine Persons of Colour and White Queer Feminine Subjects.
  • Dis/Abilities, (Mental) Health and Ableism.
  • Class (War), Cuts, Privilege, Precarity and Anti-/Capitalism.
  • Trans/Cis/Gender Queer Perspectives.
  • Male/Masculine/Butch Femininities.
  • Age/Ageing/Ageism.
  • Fat/Thin Embodiment and Sizeism.
  • Heterosexualities and Femme, Queer or Alternative Femininities.
  • Geographically Situated Reflections. What difference does it make where we come from, where we pass through and where we reside? Urban, rural and suburban perspectives and perspectives from different regional, national or transnational contexts.
  • Intersections Between Gender/Sexuality/Desire/Attraction.

Spaces, Subcultures, Communities and Subjectivities

  • Femme and Queer Feminine Communities, Subcultures, Spaces, Ethics, Praxis, Collectives and Individuals.
  • Belonging, Partial Belonging and Unbelonging.
  • Discrimination, Inclusions, Exclusions, Margins, Centre, Access, Privilege and Power.
  • Cyberspace and Cyborgs.
  • Definitions, Terms and Language.
  • Diasporic, Transitioning, Transnational and Nomadic Queer Femininities.
  • Differences, Similarities, Dissonances, Overlaps, Resonances and Affinities, Between Femme, Queer, Alternative and Subversive Femininities Identities and Communities, Emerging Within and In Between British and American, Or Any Other Contexts.


If you are looking for further inspiration you may wish to read the anthologies mentioned above, as well as any other texts or blogs related to femme, queer, alternative and subversive femininities. Alternatively, if you wish to discuss your ideas before submitting a proposal, please feel free to email me:




All Styles of Written and Visual Contributions Welcome!


Written contributions

These may take the form of manifestos, academic essays, reflexive essays, interviews, reviews, dialogues, autobiographical narratives, fictional stories, poems, collaborative or individual reflections on queer feminine collectives you belong to. Written submissions must be less than 5000 words. However, the precise length of any written contribution depends on the form and content of the piece.


Visual contributions

These may take the form of photographs, collages, comic strips, art or zine-style combinations of language and the visual. Visual materials must be formatted, presented and submitted to the editor in a way that can easily be incorporated into a printed book. If you are submitting visual materials, I strongly encourage this to include some written reflections on what the visual contribution is about – the story, meaning or intention behind it – to help contextualise this for readers.



Please send your 300 word proposal and a short biography to Alexa Athelstan & Vikki Chalklin queerfeminineaffinities@gmail.com by 31st July 2013. When submitting your proposal, please specify approximately how many words or pages you think your contribution will involve.

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