Call them pagan or ancient, earth-based or demonic, or by names like Hekate, Isis, Poseidon, Ereshkigal, Loki, and Anath, the Old Gods have been topics of energetic scholarly discussion, literary recreation, and artistic depiction for decades. As supplanted as they might seem to historians, the Old Gods live on and capture our imagination. Contextualized in archaeological study, sensationalized by filmmakers, and rendered in new costumes and flesh by artists, Old Gods continue, components of the flexible mythologies that make up shared cultural references. They are used across literature, graphic novels, television series, cinema, and MMORPGs to tell and enact narratives. As they had in ancient landscapes, the Old Gods now make up part of a dynamic belief systems and figure in new forms of ritual invocations.
This issue of Preternature especially welcomes scholars whose work focuses on the new uses of ancient Asian, Babylonian, Canaanite, Egyptian, Greek, Mesoamerican, Norse, and Slavic Gods. It also welcomes contributions, from any discipline, that highlight the cultural, literary, dramatic, religious, magical, or historical significance of any of the ancient gods in their own contexts, as a part of "paganisms," and as a part of contemporary popular cultures. We welcome synthetic overviews of Sarapis veneration in Ephesus or the cult of Mithras as much as feminist critiques of representations of goddesses in graphic novels. Analyses of new ritualizations of Old Gods in specific neopaganism groups are welcome as well. Ultimately, we are interested in how the ancient gods are maintained, in various media and in scholarly discussion, in this modern era.
Contributions should be roughly 8,000 - 12,000 words, including all documentation and critical apparatus, and adhere to the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition (style 1, employing endnotes). Contributions must be submitted through the Preternature CMS. Final submissions are due March 31, 2013.
Queries about journal scope and submissions can be made to the Editor, Dr. Kirsten C. Uszkalo. Queries concerning books to be reviewed can be made to the Book Reviews Editor, Dr. Richard Raiswell.
Preternature is a bi-annual publication, published through Penn State Press, and available in print or electronically through JSTOR, Project Muse, and as a Kindle e-book.