Skip to content


Scroll down to see the guidelines for guest-editing an issue and our forthcoming issues/concept notes:

General Submission Guidelines:

1. We are ideologically neutral and invite submissions from the perspectives of all ideologies – right, center, left etc. – as long as a piece makes a reasoned argument.

2. While emailing your pieces, please write ‘Magazine Piece: Issue No.’ in the subject line. Send submissions and queries to email ids of individual guest editors listed with concept notes.

3. The pieces should not exceed 1500 words. We are open to making exceptions to this rule, if a particular piece deserves more space.

4. We are open to audio-visual submissions (in the form of interviews, conversations etc.). The audio-visual files must not be more than 20 minutes in duration. Again, we are open to making exceptions to this rule in some cases.

5. We invite Photo Essays on the given topic of a particular issue. We will include a maximum of 15 photos in a Photo Essay.

6. In case the authors are making submissions to multiple magazines, blogs, and newspapers,  they must inform Cafe Dissensus the moment the piece is accepted elsewhere. Once Cafe Dissensus accepts a piece and starts working on it, it cannot be published in another magazine, blog, and newspaper.

7. The materials on Cafe Dissensus are protected under Creative Commons License. Once a piece is published in Cafe Dissensus, we will retain exclusive copyright for a period of 30 days, from the date of publication. Within this period, the piece cannot be re-published elsewhere even in an adapted and modified form.Thereafter, it must be acknowledged that the piece was first published in Cafe Dissensus. Failing to comply with this and any unauthorized republication/reproduction of the piece will invite legal measures and prosecution.

8. We are a completely voluntary endeavor and we are unable to pay our authors.

Guidelines for Guest-Editing an Issue:

We invite our readers, teachers, scholars, students, journalists/media professionals, activists, professionals (practically, anyone who would like to!) to guest-edit an issue of Cafe Dissensus. Here are the guidelines for guest-editing an issue: 

1. The Guest-Editor must send in a 150 word concept note/call for papers to the editors (Email: well in advance, describing the theme of the issue (along with raising some questions). We will put up the CFP/concept note on the magazine website and on the magazine social-media pages.

2.There must be at least 15-18 articles plus the guest-editorial.

3. Each article must be between 1200-1500 words. However, the guest-editor might include a few longer essays, if she/he feels necessary.

4. Since the magazine is geared toward non-academic readers, all footnotes and references must be taken out. The citations within the body of the articles must be minimal, in the form of the name of an author or an idea etc. Please keep this readability factor in mind while soliciting articles and editing them.

5. We expect at least some of the pieces to be personal narratives, wherever possible. One of our aims is to weave the personal with the public/political.

6. Audio-visual content is one of our distinctive features. The guest-editors must include at least 3-4 audio-visual interviews, conversations etc. in the edited issue. For example, interviews and conversations recorded as audio-video or audio. We can help with the logistics of recording and editing the content.

7. The guest-editor will be in charge of collecting, selecting, and editing the articles. All articles will go through a final-edit by the Editors of the magazine.

8. The guest-editor must write an 800-1000 word editorial.


2017 Cafe Dissensus Issues:

Issue 34: April 2017: Punjab: Marginal and Central [Last date for submission: 28 February, 2017; Date of publication: 1 April, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Karthik Venkatesh, writer & editor, Bangalore, India.

Concept Note: Punjab as a state occupies a distinct place in the national imagination. Its rich farmlands, the fabled bravery of its people, and its larger-than-life response to the wars of 1965 and 1971 are the stuff of legend. Puzzlingly, its centrality to the Indian imagination co-exists with a marginalisation of its urgent and real issues that have crippled the state.

Nestled on the border with Pakistan, Punjab is almost always the first to be attacked or perceived to be under threat whenever hostilities between India and Pakistan are on the boil.  In that sense, Punjab is ‘central’ in terms of a possibility of an attack and hence, it needs to be defended. Yet, the safety of its productive populace is ‘marginal’ to Indian security concerns. They are seen as collateral damage in a war situation.

Punjab is agriculturally rich and contributes considerably to the food-basket of the country. But this contribution has come at a price to its own farmers. The excessive use of fertilisers, farming machinery and overuse of groundwater has resulted in an ecological crisis and a debt crisis. The farmers’ produce is ‘central’ to the Indian discourse. But its farmers’ issues are ‘marginal’.

The discussion of Punjab in the national consciousness has consistently revolved round resources—both human and natural, ‘potential’—a vague term that means different things to different people and its ‘strategic importance’. It is perhaps time to move beyond these business-like metaphors and evaluate it for what it is to its people — their home.

This special issue of Cafe Dissensus calls for papers, reviews and photo-essays that dwell on the many facets of Punjab and attempt to unpack its abstract ‘centrality’ and people-centred ‘marginality’ in the national discourse.

The pieces should discuss the contours of Punjab’s farming traditions and the changes that have happened therein with the introduction of modern agriculture through the Green Revolution, the damage wrought by drug abuse in recent years, its religious contradictions, its caste issues, its rich vein of Dalit and subaltern literature and other issues that lay bare the state’s issues and concerns.

Submissions should be of roughly 1500-2000 words. Some longer pieces would be considered, if they deserve more space. Submissions will be accepted till 28 February, 2017 and the issue will be published on 1 April, 2017. Please email your submissions to the issue editor, Karthik Venkatesh:

Issue 35: May 2017: Masculinity/ies in Urban India [Last date for submission: 30 March, 2017; Date of publication: 1 May, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Dr. Madhura Lohokare, Shiv Nadar University, Delhi, India.

Concept Note: More than two decades after India liberalized its economy, Indian cities (big and small) have undergone fundamental spatial and social reconfiguration which is pegged onto class, gender, and caste differences. Public space has become increasingly privatized via the mushrooming of exclusive consumer spaces and gated communities and contests over existing urban spaces have sharpened acutely. As new regimes of consumption and gendered self-making pervade urban India, they simultaneously challenge and reinforce normative ideals of manhood. How does living in the city and the city’s ways, its spaces come to bear upon how men experience themselves as men and perform their gendered identities?

The aftermath of the brutal rape and murder of a paramedical student in Delhi in December 2012 made way for larger discussions surrounding linkages of power, violence and masculinity and the institutionally entrenched misogyny in Indian public life. While the sensitivity towards the gendered nature of urban spaces and the need to look at dominant meanings of masculinity is no doubt welcome, these discussions represent a disturbing alignment of class, masculinity, and violence as a singular concern within the larger realm of masculine identity, pitting the former against urban middle class women’s respectability.

Similarly, a sole focus on poor, subaltern men, might contribute to a consolidation of the discourse of subaltern men’s gendered identities as being constructed and shaped by caste, class, and location, as opposed to the upper caste, middle class, urban man’s unmarked masculinity. What are the dissonances and privileges that make up the upper caste/ liberal man’s sense of himself as a man and how is this figure as much a product of relational interactions with low caste/class men, low caste/ class women and middle class women in the urban milieu?

This special issue calls for papers, review articles, and interviews which focus on the making (and unmaking) of the masculine self in contemporary urban India. Essays or movie/ book reviews which examine men’s negotiations with changing ideals in neoliberal urban India (across caste, class or regional contexts) are welcome in this regard. Similarly, how do social and material spaces of contemporary cities in India (neighborhood associations, electoral politics, social media, the street, spaces of consumption) constitute sites of performance of manliness in different hues today? Also, essays/ movie/ media reviews/ self-reflective narratives which focus on the gendered contours of the liberal, upper caste man are most welcome, in order to focus on this figure which is only now emerging as the subject of an analytical gaze. In the context of the unidimensional and problematic association of lower class/ caste men with violence in urban India, narratives or essays drawing attention to the vulnerabilities that neoliberal urban India produces for its subaltern men would be crucial to correct this skewed portrayal.

The above framework hardly exhausts the possibilities of examining how cities make men (and consequently how men make cities); the city as a site of performance of masculinity in regional cinema/ Bollywood, excavating urban sensibilities of queer masculinities, exploring the recently popular young male stand-up comedians as representatives of an emergent urban liberalism, masculine anxieties centred on migration and labour flows in the city, the trope of masculinity in the assertion of caste, regional, and nationalist identity and so on constitute some more themes which are fertile for closer analysis.

The submissions should be of roughly 1500-2000 words. Some longer pieces would be considered, if they deserve more space. Submissions will be accepted till 30 March, 2017 and the issue will be published on 1 May, 2017. Please email your submissions to:

Issue 36: June 2017: Women’s Writing from North East India [Last date for submission: 30 April, 2017; Date of publication: 1 June, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Dr. Namrata Pathak, Department of English, Dibrugarh University, Assam, India.

Concept Note:  Representations of women by writers from North East India, such as Indira Goswami, Arupa Patangia Kalita, Rita Choudhury, Mamang Dai, Temsula Ao, Anjum Hasan, Monalisa Chankija, Mona Zote, Mitra Phukan, Easterine Kire, etc. are celebratory and liberating. Their writings interrogate the canonical texts, elitist practices, and heterosexist assumptions of culture. In this issue of Café Dissensus, we aim to take up these writers from the North East, who have invariably dealt with the issues of oppression, subjugation, invisibility, silences, and gaps at the periphery. Their whole gamut of writings point towards a lost legacy of what are “discarded,” “de-valued,” and “discredited” in the context of the women in the North East as well as India.

In North East India, dimensions of cultural heterogeneity and diversity of outlook have rendered the term “ethnic-boundary” banal. Territorial integrity, however, creates a “cultural model” based on the principles of commonality. This commonality of experience also underlies apparent differences in terms of socio-economic interests, ideology, and indigenous “localism.” Caught in the chasm between what “is” and what “should be,” the representations of the North East in art and culture have resulted in myriad modes of political consciousness. Crisis, stasis, and change at the periphery acquire new imbrications at the face of social constructionism. Also, there is a labyrinthine network of identities and discourses constructed on the self and the other. In feminist discourse, right from the detection of androcentric biases in traditional approaches to the reflection of resentment and evidence of resistance in modern times, the differently placed subjects in the North East exhibit certain strict exclusionary principles. But to what extent does a female subject have the freedom to exercise choices in oppressive structures? How does a woman define a “conflict situation,” especially in the context of administrative highhandedness and military intrusion in the North East? How does female culture get mutated at the wake of episodes of violence, insurgency, public anger, and notoriety? How does representation of women reproduce, enable, sustain or subvert ideology?

We invite articles, poems, short stories, photo essays, and interviews for the June, 2017 issue of Café Dissensus on the following sub themes:

  • Politics of Identity: Representations (appropriations) of women in oral culture.
  • Going places: Memory-mapping, travelogues-travel narratives and the woman.
  • Spatiality and landscapes: “Locating” the woman in the cultural terrain.
  • Sites of Resistance: Terror, violence, insurgency (counter-insurgency), and the woman.
  • Cyberculture, simulations, and the woman in the virtual world.
  • Writing the body: “Bodily” presences in folklores, performances etc
  • Ecofeminism

Submissions should be between 1500-2000 words. Some longer essays might be considered if the editor deems them suitable. We also invite audio-visual submissions (in the form of interviews, conversations etc.) The audio-visual files must not be more than 20 minutes in duration. Photo-Essays are also invited with not more than 15 photos in an essay. Please do provide a brief bio at the end of your piece. Since the magazine is geared toward non-academic readers, all footnotes and references must be taken out. The citations within the body of the articles must be minimal, in the form of the name of an author or an idea etc.

The issue is planned for online publication on 1 June, 2017. Submissions will be accepted till 30 April, 2017. Please email your submissions to

Issue 37: July 2017: Mapping Muslim Life in West Bengal [Last date for submission: 30 May, 2017; Date of publication: 1 July, 2017]

Guest-Editors: Mosarrap H. Khan, Doctoral Candidate, Dept. of English, New York University & Mursed Alam, Assistant Professor, Dept. of English, Gour College, Malda, West Bengal, India.

Concept Note: The recent ASGG Report (2014) on the conditions of Muslims in West Bengal reiterates the concerns expressed in such previous reports as the ones headed by Justice Sachar and Misra.   Muslims in West Bengal are grossly underrepresented in the political and economic life.  Their socio-cultural situation fares no better than the dalits. The migration of most of the elite Muslims from Bengal during the Partition of India (1947) has left behind a disenfranchised community. The subsequent indifference of the ‘secular democratic’ state toward the bleak condition of Muslims has further exacerbated the problem.

Since there has not been any significant comprehensive study undertaken about Muslims in West Bengal, this particular issue of Cafe Dissensus intends to focus on the question of Muslim life in West Bengal, their political participation, their educational attainments, their intellectual contribution, their contribution to Bengali culture, the Bengali Muslim Women’s Question, the emergent dalit identity among Muslims in West Bengal, and their present-day plight.

The contributors are requested to address some of the following questions in their submissions (but not limited to these questions alone):

How did the Bengali Muslim identity emerge historically? Does the post-Partition Muslim identity in West Bengal differ from the pre-Partition days? Did the Muslim identity in West Bengal evolve differently from that of present-day Bangladesh? What form has the present-day Muslim politics taken in West Bengal? Does a separate Muslim party have a future in the politics of West Bengal? What role do the madrasas play in the education of Muslims in West Bengal? Is there a division between religious and secular forms of education among Muslims? What has been the contribution of Muslims in West Bengal toward literature, film, music, art, architecture, and television? How have Muslims been represented in the cultural domain and media? Where are the organic Muslim intellectuals in Bengal? Since the time of late 19th century, how has the Muslim Women’s Question evolved among Bengali Muslims? How have Muslim women fared in West Bengal compared to their Hindu counterparts? How does the emergent dalit identity among Bengali Muslims recalibrate questions of politics, economics and culture? Since the state has failed to perform its duties towards more than a quarter of its population, how could the Muslim civil society pressurise the government to attend to the needs of the community? At a time of neo-liberal reforms when jobs are mostly privatised and when there is a growing popularity of rightist ideologies, is the demand for reservation among Muslims in West Bengal counterproductive?

Note: While the shorter version of the essays (2000-2500 words) will be published online on Cafe Dissensus journal, we request the contributors to prepare longer essays (5000-6000 words) toward a book project. In other words, after publication of the shorter versions of the essays online, the editors would like to approach a publisher (in India or abroad) for the publication of a volume on Bengali Muslims, which would include the longer essays.

Last date for submission: 30 May, 2017. Date of publication of the issue: 1 July, 2017. Word-limit: 2000-2500 words. Email your submissions to both Mosarrap H. Khan: & Mursed Alam:

Issue 38: August 2017: India at 70: The Many Partitions [Last date for submission: 30 June, 2017; Date of publication: 15 August, 2017]

Guest-Editors: Bhaswati Ghosh, Author & Translator, Canada.

Concept Note: The history of the epochal cartographic shift brought about in 1947 by the Radcliffe Line, which divided India into two countries – India and Pakistan – is extensively archived and continues to be documented, both in academic works and anecdotally across a range of mediums – literature, art, and, films.

In 1971, the two nations became three as Bangladesh emerged out of Pakistan following a bloody war. India’s borders – on the east and the west – remain beset with tension and possibilities. India’s relations with its neighbours along these two borders swing – as do its equations with forces within its boundaries – with stock-market like fluctuations. Words like “War” and “Violation (of cease fire)” collide with those like “Azaadi” and “Self-determination” with exhausting frequency.

Indeed, if one were to turn the focus off the border areas and look within India, one could see the many fissures that kept erupting during the last seventy years. From demands for statehood to complete cessation from the state, from tribal and ethnic movements to uprisings to revolt against exploitation and persecution of minorities – these internal divisions have assumed different contours at different times.

Kashmir burns. Bleeds. Gets blinded and blindsided.

Adivasis are robbed of the land they have lived in and preserved for centuries.

Brash impunity humiliates, lynches, and butchers minority groups and voices of reason.

Dalits and lower-castes are hung from trees, university hostel ceiling fans, shoved down gutters.

Poverty flourishes in the ghettos of the poor, the rich walk away with fat subsidies and tax cuts that keep inflating their corporate empires.

Folks cheer for the government and the army when people across the border are surgically exterminated, then war amongst themselves over water, the nature of animal meat and territorial rights.

And so the partitions continue. The theme for August, 2017 Cafe Dissensus special issue is “India at 70: The Many Partitions.” In this issue, we aim to explore the Partition not only as a one-time event in history but the many ways it continues to rear its head, bifurcating space and dividing people.

We invite submissions in the following areas, which are not exhaustive by any means:

Research essays (sans academic jargon)
Personal reminisces
Book excerpts, reviews of recent books
Photo essays

(For this issue we aren’t accepting any creative writing.)

Last date for submission: 30 June, 2017. Date of publication of the issue: 15 August, 2017. Word-limit: 1500-2000 words. Email your submissions to Bhaswati Ghosh:

Issue 39: September 2017: Disability [Last date for submission: 30 July, 2017; Date of publication: 1 September, 2017]

Guest-Editors: Dr. Nandini Ghosh & Dr. Shilpaa Anand

Concept Note: Coming soon…

Issue 40: October 2017: Remembering Sir Syed Ahmad Khan [Last date for submission: 30 August, 2017; Date of publication: 1 October, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Coming soon…

Concept Note: Coming soon…

Issue 41: November 2017: Digital Archiving in the 21st Century: Issues and Challenges [Last date for submission: 30 September, 2017; Date of publication: 1 November, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Md Intaj Ali, Doctoral Candidate, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad, India.

Concept Note: Archives are the repository of records and information which can help various enthusiasts, cultural historians, oral historians, folklorists, artists, and the participating communities to look back into their past at ease. The Digital Repository is one of the challenging issues for the humanities and social sciences disciplines due to their ever changing approaches towards digital preservation in the light of various and continuously evolving technological aspects. Cultural institutions, libraries, institutions of higher learning, national and private agencies are trying to curate and preserve different types of data in the form of digitized manuscripts, photographs, moving images, and audio-video material. Most of the cultural data has been created and preserved in the digital format that is why they have been called, ‘born digital’. The term ‘born digital’ refers to the materials or objects that were educed in a digital format.

This issue of Café Dissensus aims to explore the current practice and trends of archiving in this digital era. Digital archive attempts to showcase the cultural life and artifacts through different mode of communication. Methodology of archive is changing day by day. Due to different technical advancements, people are coming up with the latest and further enhanced equipment for documentation. In this  scenario, this issue is an attempt to bring together digital archivists, researchers, librarians, oral historians, folklorists, photographers, musicologists, and curators to facilitate a discussion on many pertaining issues and challenges that lie before the process of preserving digitally archival materials in the 21st Century.

We invite the contributors to address the following themes, which, however, are not exhaustive:

Role of memory and Storage in Digital Archive
Copyright issues
Archives, Multimedia, and the Internet
Preservation Strategies
Standards in file formats and metadata
The Role of Digital Media
Open Access vs. Digital Rights Management
Digital Collaboration
Use of Web 2.0 technologies
Social Networking Sites for Archiving
Family albums archive
Vernacular and the Digital
Conceptualizing 21st-Century Archives
Digital Conservation and Preservation: Tools and Techniques
Audio-Visual archiving
Archival Approaches
Digital Heritage
Digital Archive: Theory and Practice
Folk Archiving
Oral History and Digital Archive
Digital Curating
Web Archiving
Music Archiving

Last date for submission: 30 September, 2017. Date of publication of the issue: 1 November, 2017. Word-limit: 1500-2000 words. Email your submissions to Md. Intaj Ali:

Issue 42: December 2017: Community Policing in Kerala [Last date for submission: 30 October, 2017; Date of publication: 1 December, 2017]

Guest-Editor: Mary Ann Chacko

Concept Note: Coming soon…

9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Md Hasan, Ali #

    I want to published my article in your paper. Please send me the process of submission.

    September 25, 2014
  2. Fuad TP #

    One who born to write will search to reflect himself. Praise the lord. At last I found it
    Please inform me how I submit my piece of work.

    July 5, 2015
  3. I am a researcher and want to guest-edit an issue. How to approach and what should I do? If you kindly let me know, will be great help. I am quite confused with the notions of “concept note” and “writing to the editors in advance” kind of things.

    January 25, 2017

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Centre for the Study of Education and Work: Update 9th September 2013 | All that is Solid for Glenn Rikowski
  2. Call for submissions: “Here and There: The Diaspora Universe” | Bhaswati Ghosh
  3. Call for submissions: The Everyday and Other Tagore | Bhaswati Ghosh

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: