We are always interested in exciting new work in the fields of cinema and media studies. To submit a manuscript for consideration please follow these guidelines.

Research Articles


To submit a manuscript to JCMS, please read the following guidelines and check out our editorial wiki before proceeding to our submissions portal.

To be considered for review, manuscripts should be at least 8,000 words long and no longer than 10,000 words. Word count includes notes. Please note that this reflects a change in the word limit of JCMS articles from the earlier 12,000-word limit. The 10,000-word limit is effective as of December 1, 2022. However, the JCMS editorial team recognizes that authors prepare articles well in advance of submission. For this reason, there will be a grace period until March 1, 2023. Articles submitted before March 1, 2023 that exceed 10,000 words (but do not exceed 12,000) will still be considered for review. If you are submitting an article that exceeds 10,000 words between December 1, 2022 and March 1, 2023, please submit your article via the submissions portal and send a separate email to letting us know that you are taking advantage of this grace period. Articles submitted prior to December 1, 2022 will be held to the original 12,000-word limit.

Submissions must include an abstract of approximately 100 words and approximately six key words or terms (such as African Cinema, audience, Adorno) that will help us to ensure they are reviewed by an expert in the appropriate area. JCMS can publish up to six illustrations or tables per research article.

Submissions should follow the format specified by the Chicago Manual of Style (17th Edition). All bibliographic information should be in endnotes, and submissions should not include an additional bibliography. Please read the JCMS Style Guide for more specific guidelines.

As JCMS seeks to publish critical inquiry into the global, national, and local circulation of a wide variety of media, we look for articles that foreground original interventions in current conversations within film and media studies. Articles that focus on the formal or textual analysis of a single or small number of case studies should clearly articulate what larger questions they ask and answer.

JCMS receives a high volume of submissions. Submissions that comply with the stated submission guidelines and fit the current needs and goals of the journal will be sent out for anonymous peer review by experts in the relevant subfields. Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate requests to accelerate publication for job market or promotion cases. However, the editors are happy to write a letter for authors affirming that the article is accepted and is in queue or in press.

JCMS only accepts electronic submissions through our submissions portal. If for some reason you cannot submit electronically, please contact the editor directly. Please note that JCMS does NOT accept manuscripts in PDF format.

JCMS does not accept simultaneous submissions.

For questions regarding manuscripts submitted to JCMS for review, please consult the information in the JCMS editorial wiki.

In Focus Dossiers

In Focus dossiers are collections of short essays on specific, timely topics relevant to media studies, broadly defined. They should make a clear intervention in the field and/or offer an important new area of consideration for media studies scholars. In Focus essays and dossiers may be more polemical or exploratory than traditional academic articles. However, they should still meet the same standards of writing and argumentation as other material published in JCMS.

In Focus dossiers include an introduction (maximum 2,000 words) and approximately six short articles (maximum 2,500 words each). In Focus essays follow the JCMS Style Guide. The dossiers are edited by guest editors in the manner of a special issue. Guest editors work closely with the authors contributing to the dossier while also being guided through the larger editorial and publishing process by the JCMS team.

To help ensure their accessibility and impact, In Focus dossiers are published as part of JCMS' quarterly print issues and made available open access online. Though In Focus articles are not anonymously peer-reviewed, they nonetheless undergo a rigorous editing process led by media studies experts. A list of recent In Focus dossiers can be found on the JCMS website.

If you are interested in editing an In Focus dossier, please contact editors Liz Ellcessor ( and Bo Ruberg ( with an initial inquiry briefly describing your envisioned topic. Before inquiring, we encourage you to review past In Focus dossiers to familiarize yourself with the format and to avoid proposing a dossier topic that closely overlaps with a recently published In Focus.

If the JCMS editorial team feels that the proposed In Focus topic meets the goals of the section and fits within the publishing schedule, prospective guest editors will be invited to draft a formal proposal and solicit contributors. Proposals should include roughly 750-word overview of the dossier (its topic, its timeliness, its intervention) plus abstracts for each individual paper and short biographies for the contributing authors. Further guidelines for In Focus proposals will be emailed to authors upon approval of the initial query.

For general questions regarding In Focus or the process of proposing a dossier, please contact assistant editor Silpa Mukherjee (

Book Review Proposals

To propose a book review, please contact review editor Tupur Chatterjee ( If you would like to submit a book for possible review, please send it to:

JCMS Review Editor
c/o Elizabeth Ellcessor
PO Box 400866
115 Ruppel Drive
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4866

Professional Notes Submissions

Self-submissions to Professional Notes are welcome! Please submit contributions using this form, or send them to editor Aviva Dove-Viebahn ( Contributions can range from recent books published in media studies to articles on film and TV published in non-media journals.

Archival News Submissions

Archival News encourages self-submissions. If you would like to contribute to this quarterly feature, please send your submissions to editors Kit Hughes ( and Kathryn Brewster (

Teaching Media Submissions

Every issue of the JCMS Teaching Dossier is assembled by a guest editor (or guest editors) around a particular theme. The Teaching Media Editorial Team welcomes proposals for issues from potential guest editors. To submit a proposal, please email Alenda Chang.