Tolkien Studies

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Call for papers: 

Tolkien Studies Area

2021 PCA National Conference

Boston Marriott Copley Place Hotel

110 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02116

June 2-5, 2021


The Tolkien Studies Area (TSA) welcomes proposals for individual papers or for complete paper sessions (with four proposals) or roundtables (with five-seven participants) in any area of Tolkien studies. All PCA sessions are scheduled in 1.5 hour slots. Individual presenters should plan for fifteen minutes to present, and roundtable participants should plan for 5-7 minutes each.

The TSA welcomes scholars in all period specializations, from any disciplinary perspective, including interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary, and using any critical theory. Tolkien studies includes but is not limited to: the Legendarium, adaptations and transformative works, reader reception and fan studies, source studies, literary studies, cultural studies, tourism studies, medieval and medievalist studies, media and marketing, religious studies.

Individual or session proposals may be submitted between August 12 and November 16, 2020. In order to submit a proposal for the 2021 conference, you must:


  1. Create an account if you have not presented previously: https://pcaaca.org/user/register
  2. Pay your membership fee for the 2021 year*
  3. After your proposal is accepted, register for the conference. 


*The requirement to become a member in order to submit a proposal is new this year. Membership fees are non-refundable.


Academics, independent scholars, and graduate students are invited to submit through the online submission page. For individual papers, please submit contact information (name, institutional affiliation if any, mail and e-mail addresses, and telephone number), a title and a 300 word proposal that includes information on the topic, theory or method, and relation to relevant scholarship. 


For roundtables or paper session proposals, the organizer should submit: 

  • Session Title
  • Organizer name and contact information (as listed above)
  • Titles, abstracts, names and contact information for all participants

If you wish to organize a session, please contact robinareid@fastmail.com. Participants must have set up accounts and paid their membership to be added to paper session or roundtable proposals.

This year only: Proposals from 2020 may be re-submitted for the 2021 conference. There will be a link on the submission page which opens August 1. If you wish to resubmit your proposal, choose “yes,” and your previous submission to be retrieved for submission. Choose “no” to submit a different proposal.


Possible Topics

Adaptation Studies

          Games, Films, Art, Amazon’s Tolkien


Cultural Studies/Reception Studies/Fan Studies

          Race & Tolkien

          Queer Tolkien

          Gender & Tolkien

          Intersectional Tolkien

          Tolkien & Religion or Spirituality (Catholic, Buddhist, Neo-Paganism)

          Tolkien & White Supremacy (then and now)

          Tolkien’s Fandoms (fanfiction, fan art, fan vids, cosplay, collecting, tourism)

          Tolkien Fanzines (Marquette or other archives)

          Tolkien & Contemporary Fantasy (examples: N. K. Jemisin, G. R. R. Martin, Terry Pratchett)


Literary Studies

          New Tolkien Publications

          Tolkien & Genre

          Tolkien & Romanticisms

          Tolkien & Medievalisms

          Tolkien & Modernisms

          Tolkien & Postmodernisms

          Tolkien & the Sciences


Roundtables (brainstormed at 2019 conference):

          Tolkien Studies:       New Disciplines, Methods, Pedagogies

          Tolkien Studies:       How and Where To Publish

          Tolkien Studies:       The Question of Tolkien and Theory

          Research Ethics:       Can independent scholars lacking institutional review  boards do reception/fan studies?

          Digital Tolkien:         Digital Archives, Corpus Projects, Digital Mapping, Etc. 


For more information on the Tolkien Studies area, please contact:


Robin Anne Reid

Independent Scholar



Tolkien Studies at Popular Culture Public Group


2021 Conference Dates and Deadlines

12-Aug-20 Submission Page Goes Live
12-Oct-20 Early Bird Registration Begins
16-Nov-20 Deadline for Proposals and Endowment Grants
31-Dec-20 Early Bird Registration Ends
01-Jan-21 Regular Registration Begins
31-Jan-21 Regular Registration Ends
01-Feb-21 Late Registration Begins
01-Feb-21  Preliminary Schedule Available
28-Feb-21 Presenter Late Registration Ends at 11:59 pm: Non-registrants Dropped from Program
01-Mar-21 Non-presenter Registration Continues Through the Conference

June 2-5, 2021 

National Conference in Boston


All presenters must be current, paid members of the PCA and fully registered for the conference.

Refund requests must be submitted in writing. Full or partial refunds will be processed according to the following schedule:
Requested by Jan. 31: 100% refund
Requested by Feb 7: 75% refund
Requested by Feb 14: 50% refund
Requested by Feb. 21: 25% refund
After Feb. 28: 0% refund

Membership fees are non-refundable.