Issue Thirteen: The Outside

Call for Work

The Outside, as conceived here, names the desire for escape from the interconnected systems and norms that entrap thought and alienate action. The Outside names the utopic horizon that might be found upon achieving such an escape. It names a place beyond the cultural forms that forestall liberatory consciousness, and beyond the totalizing economic and discursive forces that preclude liberation itself.

At one level, the outside names an escape from the condition of the highly media-infused, city-dwelling subject. Being always in the know requires being constrained within a system of isolated insularities, from echo-chambers and pre-selective algorithms to the siloing of academic and political discourses. Byung-Chul Han labels this condition “the terror of the Same,” which: “affects all areas of life today. One travels everywhere, yet does not experience anything. One catches sight of everything, yet reaches no insight” (“The Terror of the Same” 3). We are increasingly incapable of genuine experience which requires an encounter with exteriority — going ‘out of’ a world that is intimate and familiar.

On a broader level, the Outside names an escape from the colonizing capital melting pot of which we are all in-gredients. What might it mean to step out, to digress, to disinvest from this system whose clutches extend so globally? For Frederic Jameson, contemporary capitalism has become so complex that imagining the edge of its “unifying and totalising force” is now impossible (“Cognitive Mapping” 348). Yet, this idea of a utopic horizon beyond such limits remains provocative. As Deleuze insists “there is always one side through which [a social formation] escapes, undoes itself” ( “Two Regimes of Madness” 15). The Outside is always calling: “the closer one gets to the periphery of the system, the more subjects find themselves caught in a kind of temptation: whether to submit oneself to signifiers, to obey the orders of the bureaucrat and follow the interpretation of the high priest — or rather to be carried off elsewhere, the beyond” (15).

We are interested in what liberatory actions you’ve imagined that seek escape from the pernicious inclusivity of a totalizing familiarity. What are spaces of exile you have discovered or cultivated? This may take the form of simply ‘leaving your comfort zone’. It may take the form of breaching the totality of a given system of thought, or reimagining connectivity in this age of disconnection. Finally, you might take Earl Sweatshirt’s summation of these ideas as a guide:

Tech is going to push people back to the land, no doubt about it. It’s more expensive in the city. Everyone else that doesn’t have money to live in that zone is going to be on the outskirts. To me, it seems like things are on the verge of getting communal around this motherf—er, man.

With this edition of the CMA journal we wish to create a collection of works that explore, enact, and externalize these Outsides. We wish to create a paradoxically enclosed volume of externalities, to create a collection of things whose essence is to thwart collection.

Possible Themes Include:

  • refusal
  • opacity
  • unintelligibility/the limits of intelligibility
  • the Other
  • exile
  • escape
  • the beyond

We invite the following types of submissions: 

  • Scholarly Papers 
  • Visual Art with documentation
  • Case Studies
  • Exhibition Reviews
  • Performance Reviews
  • Interviews
  • Video/Audio recordings and investigations with written documentation
  • Field notes and creative investigations
  • Documentation of completed artist projects or works in progress

To submit your work:

  • Submissions should be no less than 500 words and no more than 5000 words
  • Submissions should follow Chicago Style in text citation (Author/year)
  • Submission Deadline: October 10, 2022
  • Please submit your paper in MS-Word (*.doc or *.docx) format.
  • Please submit your image files in .jpg format, 300dpi or highest resolution possible
  • Email submissions to with the subject heading ‘Attn: Issue 13’
  • Image rights are the responsibility of the author/artist to secure