Mississippi Quarterly: The Journal of Southern Cultures is a refereed academic journal dedicated to publishing scholarship on the US South, broadly defined. Founded in 1948, Mississippi Quarterly is published by the College of Arts and Sciences at Mississippi State University and is recognized as one of the premier journals in the field of southern studies. Mississippi Quarterly publishes scholarly essays, interviews, and book reviews on literature, history, film, and other subjects. The journal showcases work by established and emerging scholars comprising a diverse selection of topics and critical perspectives. Each volume typically includes a special issue, often guest-edited. Topics featured in past special issues include the Twenty-First-Century Southern Novel, The South in Film, Expanding the Archive in Civil War Studies, Southern Poetry, and single authors (William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Richard Wright, and more). Outstanding scholarship published in Mississippi Quarterly has been recognized by the Society for the Study of Southern Literature and The Wilson Quarterly.
What would become one of the most respected scholarly quarterlies in America began in December 1948 as The Social Science News Bulletin. The first issue was subtitled “A Monthly News Survey Sponsored by the Social Science Council.” Vol. 1, No. 1 mostly announced university events, such as conferences and meetings.
In July 1949 the publication dropped “News” from its masthead, and the issue, now The Social Science Bulletin, presented three “papers of the Social Science Round Table of Mississippi State College.” From then on, the Bulletin was devoted more and more to articles of a research nature in fields of social science. Abstracts of graduate theses and research of the college faculty published elsewhere also appeared.
The journal began publishing longer articles, and Vol. VII, No.1, in October 1953, announced a name change and a new publication schedule: The Mississippi Quarterly. Now the publication was “devoted to studies in the Social Sciences and related fields in Mississippi.”
The 1957 issues declared a purpose to “promote scholarly studies in the socio-humanistic field in Mississippi and the South.” The emphasis was changing. By winter 1959, The Mississippi Quarterly welcomed “contributions in the humanities and the social sciences,” and the issue included five articles on literary subjects and one on history.
The first Faulkner issue appeared in 1961. From that issue onward, the shift to literary subjects was steady, and the summer 1963 issue announced that “The Mississippi Quarterly welcomes contributions in the humanities and the social sciences dealing with the South, past and present.”
Mississippi Quarterly continues to devote one issue per volume to special topics and has produced special issues on Southern Poetry, American Indian Literatures and Cultures of the South, Lynching and American Culture, and William Styron’s The Confessions of Nat Turner, as well as on authors such as Lewis Nordan, Richard Wright, and Eudora Welty.
Mississippi Quarterly welcomes contributions of original scholarship in the humanities and social sciences dealing with the US South broadly defined. Please allow four to six months for the review of your submission. The journal also publishes book reviews.
• Please submit manuscripts as Microsoft Word documents (*.docx or *.rtf format) via email attachment to the managing editor, Laura West (email@example.com) with “MQ submission” in the subject line. Book review queries should go to the associate editor, Robert West (firstname.lastname@example.org).
• Submissions should be in the range of 6,000 to 8,000 words. Send a query to the managing editor regarding submissions (notes or essays) that fall outside of this range.
√ Clear all headers or footers, including page numbers.
√ Clear all section and page breaks.
√ Use one-inch margins and left justification.
√ Use Times New Roman, 12-point font for text, minimum of 10-point font for notes.
√ Double-space text and notes; single-space within Works Cited bibliographical entries and double-space between entries.
√ Use footnotes rather than endnotes, but keep them to a minimum. In notes, cite last name only for short references (e.g., See Rubin 234-38); full name on first mention in discursive notes is acceptable.
√ Use indented blocks for quotations that exceed three full lines.
Please refer to the following guidelines as you prepare your manuscript. Compliance will expedite the review process and the preparation of manuscripts for publication.
Mississippi Quarterly uses a modified version of MLA style. For all matters not covered in the following style guidelines, refer to the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th ed. Consult the latest edition of Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary or Merriam-Webster Online for guidance on spelling and usage.
• For all quotations and references, cite the best texts you can find—preferably a scholarly edition, a text from a publisher recognized for rigor (Library of America, Modern Library, etc.), or a first edition.
• Always cite original texts unless doing so is not possible. If you do use an indirect quotation, omit “qtd. in” from the parenthetical citation.
√ Use lower case when referring to regions (southern, northern, etc.)
√ Use lower case for broad regional literary-cultural and academic fields (southern literature, southern history, southern studies, etc.) and upper case for specific titles of fields or movements (Southern Gothic, New Southern Studies, etc.).
√ Do not use capitalization for black or white when referring to racial designations.
√ Use one space between sentences.
√ Use one space between the dots in ellipses and between the ellipses and the text; no brackets for ellipses.
• Punctuation and Italics:
√ US and USA, not U.S. and U.S.A.
√ Use em dashes (—) for long dashes and en-dashes (–) for hyphens; no spacing between text and dashes.
√ Use smart quotation marks (“ ”).
√ Keep use of italics for emphasis to a minimum.
√ In Works Cited, list all edited collections or editions of an author’s work—including letters, previously uncollected works, new editions of standard works, etc.—under the author’s name, not under the editor’s or editors’; reference the work that way in the text of your essay.
√ Omit the designation “Print” from the end of bibliographic entries in Works Cited, but use the designation “Web” (rather than the URL) for electronic sources.
√ Check all bibliographical citations against their original sources for accuracy and consistency.
√ Check all quotations against their original sources for accuracy.
Note: The author is responsible for bibliographical and scholarly accuracy. Making sure that citations are correct will expedite the review process and the preparation of manuscripts for publication.
√ Spell out centuries (nineteenth, twentieth, etc.).
√ Spell out numbers less than one hundred.
√ Use full numerical designations without apostrophes for decades (the 1930s, not the 30’s or the thirties).
The Hopkins Press Journals Ethics and Malpractice Statement can be found here.
Mississippi Quarterly considers original work and requires non-simultaneous submissions. Translations and reprints are eligible for review if they are submitted with the appropriate permissions and as part of a special issue. All book reviews and review-essays are solicited. Each submission undergoes an internal assessment to determine whether it warrants further consideration in the form of a double-blind review conducted by enlisted subject specialists. Reviewers may establish their own criteria, but the expectation is that publishable work stands to make a meaningful contribution to current scholarly discussion and debate through a clear and compelling argument, thoughtful analysis, and engagement with relevant criticism. The external review process may take from four to six months, after which the author will receive anonymous reports and one of the following decisions from the editor: acceptance, acceptance pending revision, an invitation to revise and resubmit, or a declination. Authors invited to revise and resubmit must provide a brief account of how they addressed key issues and concerns raised in the initial review. Decisions on revised manuscripts are made by the editor in consultation with the readers involved in the double-blind review.
Robert M. West
Laura E. West
Robert L. Phillips
Susan V. Donaldson, College of William & Mary
Deborah Cohn, Indiana University
Sarah Gardner, Mercer University
Michael Kreyling, Vanderbilt University
Barbara Ladd, Emory University
Lorie Watkins Massey, William Carey University
Christopher Rieger, Southeast Missouri State University
Scott Romine, University of North Carolina, Greensboro
Donald Shaffer, Mississippi State University
Jon Smith, Simon Fraser University
Anthony Szczesiul, University of Massachusetts, Lowell
Editor, 2005-2012 Noel Polk
Editor, 1988-2004 Robert L. Phillips
Editor, 1970-1987 Peyton W. Williams, Jr.
Editor, 1967-1970 Scott C. Osborn
Editor, 1958-1966 Robert B. Holland
Editor, 1948-1958 John K. Bettersworth
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