CFP: Messengers from the Stars

Call for Papers
Messengers from the Stars: On Science Fiction and Fantasy
No. 7, 2024

Guest Editor: Ana Daniela Coelho
Co-editor: Diana Marques

Messengers from the Stars is an international, peer-reviewed, open-access journal, offering academic articles, reviews, and providing an outlet for a wide range of creative work inspired by science fiction and fantasy. The 2023 issue will be dedicated to the following theme:

Adapting Fantasy and Sci-Fi in the Age of Streaming

Adaptation, whether recognized as such or not, has long been a staple in Fantasy and Sci-Fi productions of different media. Given the undeniable importance of streaming and the increasing number of new productions, this tendency has only grown stronger in recent years, as the plethora of available material is joined by multiple-platform strategies, where both narrative and audience engagement are enhanced.

2022 has borne witness to expanding universes – HBO’s House of Dragon or Amazon Prime’s The Rings of Power –, as well as to new adaptations – Wheel of Time, Shadow and Bone. Beyond the more usual literature-to-film movement, adaptations from, to or including fewer central media or formats, such as comics – Sandman (Netflix, 2022-) – or videogames – The Witcher (Netflix, 2019-), The Last of Us (2023-) – also made their debut in the last few years.

In addition, transmedia storytelling and expansion of narratives beyond one main story arch are increasingly common, as new productions are brought to light – Arcane (Netflix, 2021-) –, and pioneering projects were remembered and celebrated, as in the case of the recent 10th anniversary of web series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries (2012).

Thus, for this issue we are looking for articles that delve deeper into the topics of streaming and adaptation of Fantasy and Sci-Fi works, in particular objects that exploit the new capacities brought about by new platforms, namely transmedia strategies.

Possible topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Adaptation of fantasy/sci-fi worlds into streaming/new platforms
  • Transmedia storytelling
  • Audience engagement and fandom
  • Issues of fidelity/creative independence to/from source texts
  • Expanding/reimagining fantasy/sci-fi worlds
  • Relevance of streaming platforms in the adaptation of fantasy/sci-fi works

Submissions, between 4000 and 6000 words in English, must be sent to by December 31st, 2023. The authors will be notified by the end of January.

In addition, you can propose a book or film review. We welcome book and film reviews on current science fiction and fantasy research and PhD dissertations. Reviews should be between 500 to 1,000 words. Longer reviews, e.g. dealing with more than one book, should be agreed upon with the Editorial Board. The guideline for book/film reviews is available here.

All submissions must follow the journal’s guidelines available at:

Media Literacy: from theory to practice (a one-day event)

Education in media literacy is crucial in an increasingly polarized society. This statement leaves us with some questions:

  • How can the promotion of media literacy contribute to combating the increasing polarization of public opinion in contemporary societies?
  • What is the state-of-the-art of media literacy in Portugal?
  • How can media education contribute to solving problems that affect our society?

To reflect on these questions, the Centre for English Studies of the University of Lisbon (CEAUL/ULICES) in partnership with the American Corners Portugal have organized the event “Media Literacy: from theory to practice”. The morning will be dedicated to a lecture by Renee Hobbs, a world reference in digital and media literacy, followed by a round table discussion with Portuguese experts Isabel Nery, Manuel Pinto and Vítor Tomé.  A workshop with Renee Hobbs will be offered in the afternoon.

The event is aimed at university students (1st, 2nd and 3rd cycles) and anyone with an interest in this area. The lecture and the round table are open to the public. However, the workshop requires prior registration.  Those interested in participating must do so by 29 September 2023. To register simply fill in the  registration form  on this link and send it to After completing this step, you will be contacted on how to proceed with the payment of the €10 fee.

For additional information on the event see the poster below or contact:


9:30 – 10:00Opening Session Anfiteatro III (Sala A201)  
10:00 – 11:00Plenary Lecture: “How Media Literacy Education Helps to Depolarize Society”             Renee Hobbs (University of Rhode Island, USA)
11:15 – 12:45Roundtable Discussion: “Media Literacy in Practice: the Portuguese context” Isabel Nery (CAPP, ISCSP); Manuel Pinto (CECS, Universidade do Minho); Vitor Tomé (CIES, ISCTE-IUL)
15:00 – 17:00Workshop – (Sala B112.B)  (Mandatory enrolment, max. 30 pax.): “Designing Educational Futures: How media literacy education responds to important community needs”             Renee Hobbs (University of Rhode Island, USA)



Ford Madox Ford was born Joseph Leopold Ford Hermann Madox Hueffer on 17 December 1873 in Merton, Surrey. His name runs through the fabric of the modern novel as he tackled different genres and topics in his vast production of works, namely: The Shifting of the Fire (1892), his first novel; The Inheritors (1901), the first of the three novels he wrote in collaboration with Joseph Conrad; fairy tales such as The Brown Owl or The Feather (1892);  a historical trilogy of Henry VIII’s fifth queen, published under the titles The Fifth Queen (1906), Privy Seal (1907), and The Fifth Queen Crowned (1908) which, according to the critics of his day, raised the genre of historical fiction to new heights; his opus magnum, The Good Soldier (1915), and also the Tetralogy Parade’s End (1924) brought the author worldwide literary recognition insofar as they showcase how he had perfected his technique of point of view, time-shift, le mot juste, selection  and progression d’ effet. These more mature works also addressed the author’s anguished weltanschauung. However, his production is not limited to the novel, but extends to poetry, essay writing, journalism and memoirs, leaving ground for the exploration and analysis of a myriad of research possibilities.

150 years have passed since his birth and because of the importance of Ford’s writings at the end of the Victorian Era and during the Edwardian period, providing insightful representations and descriptions of the political, social and cultural status quo of his time (mainly before and after the 1st World War), it is then paramount to celebrate Ford’s valuable contribution to early twentieth century’s (British) literature and culture.

With this in mind, this symposium seeks to give due recognition to Ford Madox Ford’s works and his role as a writer and cultural/social and literary critic during the late Victorian age and the first three decades of the twentieth century. Therefore, participants are invited to present proposals that explore, analyse and problematise cultural, literary, political and social issues that gravitate around Ford’s works.

As such, topics and themes of interest include, but are not restricted to, the following:

  • Modernism
  • Liberalism, nationalism and cosmopolitanism
  • Ideological and economic doctrines
  • The Great War / World War I and narrative
  • Crossroads between the American, British and (continental) European cultures
  • Cultural memory
  • Identity and gender in the “small circle novels”
  • Victorian Woman/ New Woman
  • Mental health
  • Utopia, dystopia and heterotopia

Deadlines and other information

  • In order to participate you should proceed to Registration.
  • 31st July 2023: final deadline for submission of paper presentations
  • The publication of the selected papers will be done at Anglo Saxonica (indexed in scopus), in the form of a Special Issue
  • Languages of the event: Portuguese and English
  • Both remote (online) and onsite presentations will be accepted
  • Further information through the following e-mail address: or here

Date: 9-10 November 2023
Convener: University of Lisbon Centre for English Studies (ULICES)
Venue: Faculty of Arts and Humanities-Lisbon University

RHOME 2023

RHOME 2023: Representations of Home in Literatures and Cultures in English (Dis)locations: the shifting thematics of home

The ULICES Representations of Home research project addresses issues of identity and belonging in different geo-political, socio-cultural contexts of countries where English is or has become a language of communication.

Since its formation in 2013, the project has explored this theme as represented in literature, the visual arts and culture, but also from a social, political and historical perspective. The idea of home branches out in many directions, is multi-layered and ongoing. Its multiple interpretations range from more objective, when dealing with voluntary and involuntary migration and exile, war, conflict, abuse, trauma, demographic evolution and the effects of climate change, while the more subjective representations deal with the ideal, imaginary, remembered and desired home.

Location is fundamental to any of the readings of “home.” It is implicit that knowing where one belongs implies recognising where one does not belong, and the problem of being removed from such a place. However, it is important to deconstruct the assumption that there are boundaries and limitations to the possibilities of home or to where one belongs and does not belong. Bill Ashcroft has argued for less focus on boundaries than on a stance of “outwardness” (2001, 204-5), while Bhabha has long debated for the recognition of cultural hybridity in contemporary society, and the acceptance of diversity (1994, 114), while arguing for an ethics of reading unhomely fiction: “To live in the unhomely world, to find its ambivalences and ambiguities enacted in the house of fiction, or its sundering and splitting performed in the work of art, is also to affirm a profound desire for social solidarity” (1992, 18).

Acknowledging place(s), space(s) or community as home simultaneously embraces actions of searching and anchoring, movement and non-movement, centring and decentring, whether individually or in a group, which empirically and symbolically attribute meaning to that or various locations and dislocations. The postmodern and postcolonial subject, described by de Medeiros as the “shattered postcolonial Self” (2018, 23), has shifted beyond the realm of the “monocultural, monoethnic, and monolingual” (30) and perhaps the same can be said of place. Divergent and shifting meanings attached to a specific place may be the reason for (dis)location or relocation. More subjective forms of (dis)location also exist through the reconstruction of the past and construction of the present and future, a function of cultural memory. Concepts as “rhizomic anchoring” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987), “topophilia” (Yi-Fu Tuan, 1974; 1977) and “un-homing” (Elliott-Cooper, Hubbard, and Lees, 2019), among others, also allow for a shift from the question about origins to that of destination (cf. Nicolas Bourriaud, 2009).

For the RHOME project’s next conference, which will take place in Lisbon in June 2023, we invite contributions on representations of home and the thematics of dislocation in English-speaking communities.

Date: June 22nd to June 23rd, 2023
Location: University of Lisbon School of Arts and Humanities (Faculdade de Letras)
Website: Representations of Home in Literatures and Cultures in English (Rhome)

Nameless City / Cidade Sem Nome

Nameless City / Cidade Sem Nome — Photography Exhibition

The retrospective exhibition Nameless City , hosted by the Representations of Home in
Literatures and Cultures in English — (Dis)locations: The Shifting Thematics of Home
conference, covers some of Luísa Ferreira’s work over the last three decades. The city,
home, memory, gentrification, (dis)location, (un)settlement, (dis)possession and
(up)rootedness are central themes in a selection of images from her photographic series Há quanto tempo trabalha aqui? How long have you been working here?;
Intimidade Intimacy; Tranquilidade, Fidelidade, Infelicidade Tranquility, Loyalty, Unhappiness; Loreto (2020); Sem Prata (2019-2020); No Limite No Limit and Barbadinhos (2020) showcased at this exhibition.

Date: June 22nd to July 12th
Location: Exhibition space of the Library, University of Lisbon School of Arts and Humanities (Faculdade de Letras)
Website: Representations of Home in Literatures and Cultures in English (Rhome)
Inauguration: June 22nd, 6.30PM

The road goes ever on and on: Commemorating J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973)

The road goes ever on and on: Commemorating J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973)

The Road goes ever on and on: Commemorating J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973)” sets to celebrate the works of Tolkien, 50 years after the author’s death. It will bring together scholars, fans, and enthusiasts to explore the rich and complex world of Middle-earth, as well as Tolkien’s wider literary and cultural legacy. In addition to the keynote speeches, the conference will also offer a range of other activities and events.

Date: May 23rd-26th
Venue: Amphitheatre III (Room A201) at the School of Arts and Humanities,
University of Lisbon

Projecto “Vozes do Mundo Antigo e Medieval” (CEAUL/CEC)

Ciclo de Seminários “Lectures on the Medieval North”: Massimiliano Bampi – Defining Old Norse saga genres: problems and perspectives

Resumo: “Although in Old Norse scholarship it is customary to divide the corpus of extant sagas into genres, the current taxonomy has proven rather controversial for a number of reasons. In this talk I shall address the most relevant issues that Old Norse scholars are confronted with when it comes to investigating generic definition and generic awareness (with regard to saga literature) as well as the limits posed by the current taxonomy in dealing with such questions.”

Nota Biográfica: Massimiliano Bampi is Professor of Germanic Philology at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. He has published widely on Nordic medieval literatures, especially on genre in Old Norse-Icelandic literature, on the role of translation in medieval Sweden, and on intertextuality in medieval Nordic multi-text manuscripts. He is currently writing a monograph on saga genres and generic hybridity.

Date: 20 of April, 2023
Venue: Amphitheatre II, School of Arts and Humanities of University of Lisbon (FLUL)
Acess to the meeting:
ID da reunião: 963 3844 8195
Senha de acesso: 442127

ESC#59 Videographic Montage: The Video Essay as a Discursive Tool

Videos are an essential tool in academic work, offering a powerful way to communicate research papers, ideas, and arguments. Video abstracts and video essays visually demonstrate research findings and allow for the use of creative tools to convey complex ideas and emotions in an impactful way. Videos capture affective, experiential, and embodied qualities that are often left dormant in traditional textual research, making academic work more approachable and understandable to a broader audience. This workshop aims to equip participants with the skills and tools they need to create captivating videos that leave a lasting impression on the audience. Participants will use DaVinci Resolve, a free-to-use video editing software used in many Hollywood productions, and can choose to utilize a library of free-to-use images or images captured by them to construct their first video montage.

The workshop will employ a “farm to table” approach to guide participants through the entire process and pipeline, from incubating their ideas to seeing their videos materialized and projected on the big screen. The “farm” refers to the participant’s mind, where the workshop will plant the seeds of investigative inquiry and work closely with participants to help them bring their ideas to fruition. The workshop aims to foster and support the creative process to create a supportive and collaborative environment for participants to develop their video rhetoric. Participants will be provided with theoretical background knowledge of the American versus Russian school of montage, allowing them to utilize the techniques of these differing schools in the way they deem most fitting to illustrate their ideas. With this knowledge, participants can choose a soundscape or a reading of a text as a basis for their video essay. Their final video essays will be screened at an art gallery so that the participants work may be disseminated and achieve higher exposure. This workshop is perfect for anyone with a passion for art and film, regardless of their level of experience. The maximum number of participants will be capped at 15 to ensure every participant can be helped equally. Don’t miss out on this exciting opportunity to learn how to harness the full potential of video editing for your academic work!

Those interested in registering must do so until April 28th. To complete the registration, it will be necessary to fill in the registration form with all the requested data and send it to Afterward, you will be contacted on how to proceed with the payment of the 40 € fee.

Online Seminar in the Medical Humanities Permanent Seminar Cycle

Narrative Medicine (NM) is evolving from its first definitions (Charon, 2001; Greenhalgh. 1999) and perhaps can be seen as moving towards an approach related to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations. In the past two decades, NM has been “used” mainly with certain groups to develop empathy and trust in the relationship between health care professionals and patients. Now, the paradigm must shift from medicine, and look not only to treatment, but move on to existential wellbeing. The SDGs mentions the interconnection amongst health, diversity, gender, pollution and climate change and peace. To give a meaning to wellbeing, we must consider, in a narrative manner, all these determinants of health. Therefore, the new gaze of NM should be to include these drivers into the realm of health care and research. NM has to be pragmatic and based not only on intellectual name dropping, but looking after the health care providers, exposed to burn out, with the same dignity as used for patients. These steps call for deep alignments (ecological transitions), and not just etiquette, among patients, doctors and caregivers, thus creating societal inclusion.

Seminar (in English)The future of narrative medicine
Date and Time: March 16, 2023, 6pm.
Speaker: Maria Giulia Marini Scientific and Innovation Director of the Health Care Area of ISTUD, Fondazione, Milan, Italia.
Zoom link: https://videoconf- 3cvM1d1QVB4c09xalpWZHMwNmtBQT09

Sarah Falcus Seminar | Children’s Literature and Ageing Studies: intergenerationality, time and the life course

This talk brings together ageing studies and children’s literature in order to argue that the relationship between child and older person has ramifications for our understanding of ourselves as temporal and relational beings. Scholars such as Vanessa Joosen have suggested that we revisit the traditionally limiting and even stereotypical alignment between the child and the older person in children’s literature, arguing that this connection may enable new configurations and understandings of old age. Taking on this challenge, I consider the representation of the grandparent and grandchild in picturebooks from the late twentieth to early twenty-first centuries. Engaging with recent critiques of the child in time (Edelman, Sheldon, Gubar, Beauvais), I explore how the convergence of times in the intergenerational relationship may cause us to rethink not only the child’s relationship to time, but also that of the older adult. Ultimately, this examination of the intergenerational relationship in children’s picturebooks reiterates the importance of thinking about ageing from a life course perspective.