Collecting & Collectibles

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The recent Special Issue of The Journal of American Culture (Volume 43, Issue 1) was dedicated to Collectors and Collectibles, a special issue focusing on “the psychology of collecting, collections as history, social interaction and collecting, collecting vs. hoarding, altruism and collecting, and the cultural aspects of specific collections.” [i]


Building on this interest, the Collecting and Collectibles Area of the Popular Culture Association invites paper submissions on any topic involving collecting. Subject areas may include, but are not limited to:

  • why people collect (motives/motivations)
  • specific collectors and/or collections
  • social and cultural aspects of collecting
  • methods for researching collecting
  • the practice of collecting
  • theories of collecting
  • collecting theory vs. collecting practice
  • specific types of collectibles
  • the psychology of collecting
  • historical changes in collecting
  • collecting in/as contemporary popular culture
  • collecting as a metaphor in (post)modern life
  • consumerism and collecting
  • collecting and/as material culture
  • how the Internet has changed traditional collecting
  • new forms of collecting in a digital world


Papers can deal with any type of collecting – from individual to institutional (museums, libraries, etc.) – and/or any type of collectible – from popular culture to fine arts to antiquities to new forms of collecting that may exist only in virtual spaces. We would especially like to encourage submissions that work to broaden and deepen our understanding of collecting across its many contexts.

Inquiries about possible papers or proposals for round table sessions or full panels are also welcomed and encouraged.


How to submit:

  1. Please register for an account on the site and fill in a brief bio and affiliation.
  2. Submit an abstract of no more than 250 words on the site.
  3. This area does not accept undergraduate papers for 2022. Undergraduates are encouraged to submit to the Undergraduate Sessions Area.

Contact the area co-chairs if you have any questions:

Lynn Bartholome

Popular Culture Association/Bowling Green State University


Robin Hershkowitz

Bowling Green State University



[i]  “Call for Papers: Special Issues” https://onlinelibrary-wiley-com.ezproxy.bgsu.edu/page/journal/1542734x/h...


2022 Conference Dates and Deadlines

01Aug-21 2022 Conference Information Available on Website
01 Sept-21 Submissions Open 
21 Jan-22 Deadline for Paper Proposals
11 Feb-22 Early Bird Registration Ends
12 Feb-22 Regular Registration Begins
01 Mar-22 Regular Registration Ends for Presenters; Those Presenters Not Registered by the Date Will be Dropped From the Program; Late Registration Continues for Nonpresenters
01 Apr-22 Late Registration Ends for Nonpresenters
April 13-16, 2022

Virtual conference


All presenters must be current, paid members of the PCA and registered for the conference. Non-presenters who attend the full conference must also pay membership fees.

To attend the National Conference, members must pay the membership fee and the registration fee.   

The last day for all refunds is February 20, 2022. No refund requests will be honored after this date. Membership fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.


Area chairs

Lynn Bartholome

Robin Hershkowitz