Gibb, Viva. Indexing the “Argus”, the Newspaper Room, State Library of Victoria, 1985. Photograph: gelatin silver, selenium toned; 17.5 x 21.6 cm (sight), on paper 20.0 x 25.3 cm, State Library of Victoria, Melbourne.


As a discipline, history occupies the intersection between institutional knowledge production and everyday practices of storytelling and meaning-making. Across time and places, narrating the past has been central to processes of understanding selves, identities, and societies. As historians, we locate and interact with historical sources in various forms and interpret narratives in competing ways which are embedded within epistemic, economic, political, cultural, and gendered power structures. Historians also continue to play important roles in the formation and revision of official historical narratives, as well as social debates on memory, collective identities, and justice. How, considering these multiplicities, can we understand the crafting and contesting of narratives? The MHJ seeks papers which explore intersections between power and meaning-making and their implications for ways of narrating lives and stories.

The MHJ is calling for papers that explore the theme “Narratives & Power” for its 2019 issue. These may address, but should not be limited to:

  • The institutional power of Archives and formation of alternative archives
  • Structural power and its inscription in the lives of past individuals
  • The relationship between narrative and History/history
  • Competing memories, discourses, and historiographies
  • Narratologies to articulate the experiences of under-represented groups
  • Material culture and other non-textual narratives
  • Micro-power relations and embodied resistance
  • Historicities and narrative practices which challenge Eurocentric epistemologies
  • Emotions and affective experiences in historical inquiry

The MHJ is also calling for contributions which offer different approaches to examining and relating to the past, and innovative ways to present historical research. These could include reflections, thematic or review essays, interviews or conversations, primary source translations and commentaries, creative responses, and contributions which incorporate visual art.

We welcome submissions from contributors at all stages of their career, particularly from postgraduate and early career researchers. Papers should be 4000-7000 words in length (including footnotes and references) and should follow the MHJ Style Guide available at

Please direct all submissions to by Monday 29 July. Contributors wishing to submit work in formats other than an article or book review should contact MHJ prior to formal submission with a short (250 words) abstract or pitch.

Written by mhj