CFP: Graphic Med Conference

July 11-13, 2019
Hosted by Brighton and Sussex Medical School, at the Sallis Benney Theatre, Brighton, UK

The Graphic Medicine conference is back in Brighton. We first hosted this conference in 2013 and we are looking forward to welcoming friends old and new to participate in 2019.

Our conference title is deliberately tricky. We hope this draws you in, not shuts you out. This year marks the formation of the Graphic Medicine collective, and this is the first conference under this banner. To us this represents an opportunity to query or question what graphic medicine is about. The time for blind evangelism is past: let’s critically explore our field.

To frame this exploration, we are interested in what it might mean to queer graphic medicine. ‘Queering’ is about refusing binaries and giving a voice to those who are usually silenced through not belonging. It can refer to gender, sexuality, and intersexuality, but it can also be a lens through which to understand other forms of personal, cultural, and political subversion. Queer can be an insult, a reclaimed word, a theoretical standpoint depending on which speech bubble it sits in.

We have lots more questions we hope will be raised and debated through this conference. We invite the submission of a wide variety of abstracts focusing on health, medicine, and comics in any form (e.g. graphic novels and memoir, comic strips, manga, mini comics, web comics) that might explore the following questions, or others you feel are relevant to our field:

  • What is Graphic Medicine?
  • Are ‘graphic’ and ‘medicine’ exclusive terms? How might these terms be queried or

queered to open up possibilities for the field and genre?

  • Who gets to speak?
  • Why use comics in healthcare education?
  • What can a Gender Studies perspective offer to the practice, teaching, or creation of

graphic medicine?

  • How can comics critically address issues of power in healthcare?
  • How do comics help us question paradigms and assumptions?
  • How might comics reveal everyday sexism?
  • Can comics help with the idea that feminism is for everybody (i.e. intersectionality)?
  • Do comics have something to say about the power and paradigms that swirl around the

healthcare of trans people?

  • Does our sexuality plays a part in our art and in our experiences of healthcare?
  • What makes a good ally?
  • How can we avoid offence while still encouraging debate on issues around gender and


  • Do comics have something to say about homophobia and transphobia?

Presentation Formats:

Lightning talks: These 5-minute presentations should provide an engaging and concentrated synopsis of new, ongoing, or completed scholarly, creative, or professional work in Graphic Medicine. This format is designed with the promotion of sustained conversation in mind.

Oral presentations: These 15-20 minute presentations are largely for collaborative, interdisciplinary, or other work that requires and engages a longer presentation format.

Panel discussions: These 90-minute interviews or presentations by a panel of speakers are meant to address a single topic from a variety of perspectives.

Workshops: These 90-minute, hands-on, activity-driven sessions are for participants who wish to obtain particular skills with regard to comics. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

o drawing for health
o accessing personal stories o comics and storytelling
o mini-comic tutorial

Submission Process

Proposal abstracts should not exceed 300 words and may be submitted in Word or PDF format. Please include the following information in this order:

• author(s)
• affiliation
• email address

• phone number
• title of abstract
• body of abstract
• sample images or web links to work being discussed (if applicable) • presentation format preference (see options above)
• equipment needed (e.g. AV projection, whiteboard, easel, etc.)

Proposals should be submitted by January 31st, 2019 to:

Abstracts will be peer-reviewed by an interdisciplinary selection committee. Notification of acceptance or rejection will be completed by the week of March 15. While we cannot guarantee that presenters will receive their first choice of presentation format, we will attempt to honour preferences, and we will acknowledge the receipt of all proposals.

Please note: Presenters are responsible for costs associated with their session (e.g. handouts and supplies) and personal expenses (travel, hotel, and registration fees). All presenters must register for the conference. Discounted rates and some limited scholarships will be available for students, artists, and others in need.

Proposals should be submitted no later than January 31st, 2019.