1. About our work
With an alternative approach to conventional publishing Contextual Alternate aims to generate scholarship and critical discourse – broadly, but not exclusively, in Asian and African contexts – across the fields of design, material culture, print, communication, technology and history at large. Drawing on a multiplicity of critical outlooks and exploring larger themes than are usually acknowledged within discrete disciplinary boundaries, it aims to address a diverse readership through more accessible modes of critical engagement.
Contextual Alternate publishes books and runs an eponymous journal, online and in print. Appearing once every year in print, and periodically online, each yearly issue is broadly framed around particular themes. All articles for the journal are originally commissioned and follow a double-blind review process. Envisioned as an avenue for constructive dialogue across a wide range of critical concerns, the journal aims to open new directions of enquiry and to function as a place for informed debates and conversations that pave the way for further research and collaboration.
Contextual Alternate is an independent publishing initiative. It has no institutional affiliations or external sponsorship. With no place for advertisements or commercial endorsements, Contextual Alternate is subsidised by and run within the means of its publisher, and it sustains entirely on the support of its readers and subscribers.
2. Guidelines and requirements
Journal articles must be a minimum of 5000 words in length (not including notes, references, bibliography etc). There is no strict upper limit, it may be whatever the author thinks necessary for the argument, or for the subject under consideration. However, articles over 15000 words may be divided over multiple issues. An abstract of 100 words or less and a biographical note of 150–200 words will be required along with the article.
Articles must be in English, and should be submitted as text documents by email to the contact address at the bottom of this page. No special formatting is demanded of the author, however all articles will be edited, where required, to follow Modern Humanities Research Association (MHRA) style guide (http://www.mhra.org.uk/Publications/Books/StyleGuide/StyleGuideV3_2.pdf).
Authors should use footnotes/endnotes to any extent that suits their purpose. Where quotations are used or reference is made to any published material, full citation and bibliographic information must be provided following MHRA style. The text of article should not use the Author-Date system, references should be added as notes only.
Authors are encouraged to make use of images and visual material, and discuss the possibilities of the same with us. Please be aware that it is not possible for us to pay for image permissions with substantial fees but we may be able to cover some costs where the illustrations make a significant difference to the content of the article. In other cases, images and illustrations of our own may accompany the text, and we may also have to reconfigure those supplied by the author in keeping with the overall design.
The journal aims for intellectually engaging, non-academic style of writing while maintaining full academic rigour and thoroughness. It aims to address a broad cross-disciplinary as well as non-academic readership. The text of the article should, therefore, use as few discipline-specific/technical terms as possible, and provide full explanations for a non-specialist reader if such terms are used. The intent is not to limit complexity of ideas but to provide intellectually challenging content in terms that can engage a broad section of the literate public.
The journal aims for wide-ranging analysis and critical inquiry. We are interested in sharp reasoning, informed arguments, fresh perspectives, and a light touch, preferring rational doubt and dissent over statements of belief or tenets of any one discipline.
3. Copyright and publishing agreement
Once an article is accepted for publication, a one-time honorarium for it will be paid within 30 days of the final acceptance for publication. The honorarium is limited to £200 (GBP two hundred only) for one article, irrespective of the number of authors/co-authors. This payment will not take into account exchange rates, transfer rates, bank charges, or currency fluctuations. Payment is not based on length of article, or any other factors, but is a lump-sum honorarium for the work in good faith, and in appreciation of the efforts of the author/s. Payment is made directly to the author’s account. Two copies of the relevant journal issue are also sent gratis to authors.
The author retains copyright for the article. The author gives Contextual Alternate permission to publish the article in any form. Additionally, for the duration of one year from the date of its publication the author agrees not to publish the same article or a derivative or modified version elsewhere, online or in print, whether through his/her own platform/blog/website or through a third party publisher.
All subsequent appearances of the article must cite and carry full acknowledgement of the article’s first publication by Contextual Alternate.
The author grants Contextual Alternate the right to publish, print, and reprint the commissioned article in any form, in a compendium, anthology, or collection deriving from its journal. Contextual Alternate may publish the article within the context of its journal, online and in print, or on its own elsewhere by permission of the author.
All articles for the journal are specifically commissioned by Contextual Alternate and must be the author’s own work. The author certifies that the article is his/her heretofore unpublished original work and that no material utilised therein infringes the rights of any third parties. The responsibility for ensuring this lies with the author, Contextual Alternate will not be held responsible for any copyright issues in the author’s work.
Please email: v [at] contextualternate [dot] com if you have any questions.