Key Journals and Periodicals

Key Journals and Periodicals


The following list summarizes key journals and periodicals addressing aesthetics and civically engaged art. Animating Democracy thanks Alison Lohr for her dedicated work in researching and compiling this list.


Overview: “A non-profit, bimonthly publication, interdisciplinary both in topic and voice, making connections between the visual arts and other areas of study. Our contributors are emerging as well as established artists and theorists.”
Discipline/area: Photography, Media Arts, and Multidisciplinary
Published by: Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester, New York
Editor: Karen van Meener


Art Papers

Overview: “A non-profit organization dedicated to the examination and development of art and culture in the world today. Its mission is to provide a forum for the exchange of diverse and independent perspectives on the role of art in relation to culture, social, and philosophical issues.”
Discipline/area: Visual Art, Music, Film, Performance, and other mediums
Published by: Art Papers, Inc.
Managing Editor: Jamie Badoud


Critical Inquiry

Overview: “CI has been known as a forum for controversy and debate on the critical issues of the day. One of our principal criteria for acceptance of a manuscript for publication has been "arguability," the likelihood that it will produce interesting disagreements. The criterion of "interest" is, of course, itself a shifting and multiply articulated standard, partly a function of general notions of argumentative rigor, and specific disciplinary notions of what is current and relevant.”
Discipline/area: Criticism
Published by: The University of Chicago Press
Managing Editor: J.W.T. Mitchell


Critical Quarterly

Overview: “CQ is internationally renowned for its unique blend of literary criticism, cultural studies, poetry and fiction. The journal addresses the whole range of cultural forms so that discussions of, for example, cinema and television can appear alongside analyses of the accepted literary canon. It is a necessary condition of debate in these areas that it should involve as many and as varied voices as possible.”
Discipline/area: Literary Arts and Multidisciplinary (see above)
Published by: Blackwell Publishers
Chief Editor: Colin MacCabe


Discussions in Contemporary Culture

Overview: “Discussions in Contemporary Culture is an award-winning series co-published with the Dia Center for the Arts in New York City. These volumes offer rich and timely discourses on a broad range of cultural issues and critical theory. The collection covers topics from urban planning to popular culture and literature, and continually attracts a wide and dedicated readership.”
Discipline/area: Visual Arts, Multidisciplinary
Published by: Dia Center for the Arts and Bay Press
Chief Editor: N/A


In Motion Magazines: Art Changes from Where I Stand

Overview: “In Motion is a multicultural, online publication about democracy. “Art Changes” features original works of all sorts of art as well as analysis, history and criticism. Art in this column will not be separate from the society in which it is created.”
Discipline/area: Media, Literary, Performing and Visual Arts
Published by: NPC Productions
Editor: Alice Lovelace


Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism

Overview: “Publishes current research articles, symposia, special issues, and timely book reviews in aesthetics and the arts. The term "aesthetics," in this connection, is understood to include all studies of the arts and related types of experience from a philosophic, scientific, or other theoretical standpoint. The Journal takes a theoretical and interdisciplinary approach to the arts and aesthetic matters.”
Discipline/area: music, literature, landscape architecture, dance, architecture, visual arts, photography, film, earthworks, performance and conceptual art, crafts and decorative arts, contemporary technical innovations, and other cultural practices, including the field of popular culture
Published by: American Society for Aesthetics
Chief Editor: Philip Alperson


Link: A Critical Journal on the Arts in Baltimore and the World

Overview: “Dedicated to fostering local and international awareness of and dialogue about art and artists within a broad context. As a locally generated publication, Link examines the region’s cultural offerings and history, while placing them within an international context through diverse, thought provoking writing….Link acts as a catalyst for positive change in the community.”
Discipline/area: Visual, Media, Literary and Performing arts
Published by: Link (a non-profit)
President/Editor: Megan Hamilton (N.B. Katherine Carl is one of its founding editors)


Music Analysis

Overview: “The international forum for the presentation of new writing focused on musical works and repertoires. Through articles and its Critical Forum, it aims to take forward debates concerning the relationship of technical commentary on music with music theory, critical theory, music history, and the cognitive sciences.”
Discipline/area: Music
Published by: Blackwell Publishers
Chief Editor: Jonathan Cross


N. Paradoxa

Overview: “The only international feminist art journalexploring feminist theory, art criticism, and contemporary women's art practices.”
Discipline/area: Feminist art, Visual and Performance Art
Published by: Unknown
Chief Editor: Katy Deepwell



Overview: “At the forefront of contemporary arts criticism and theory, October focuses critical attention on the contemporary arts and their various contexts of interpretation.”
Discipline/area: Film, Painting, Music, Photography, Performance, Sculpture, and Literature
Published by: MIT Press
Managing Editor: Carrie Lambert


PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art

Overview: “PAJ offers extended coverage of the visual arts (video, installations, photography, and multimedia performance), in addition to reviews of new works in theater, dance, film, and opera.”
Discipline/area: Visual, Media, and Performance Art
Published by: Johns Hopkins University Press
Chief Editor: Bonnie Marranca and Gautam Dasgupta



Overview: “Is a journal of art, music, technology, media and cultural theory and criticism, which began in print and is now exclusively online. Its intent is to cover the points where art, technology, theory, and community overlap and to encourage experimentation in the presentation of materials using the latest computer technologies, if possible, working at the borders of the various institutions involved.”
Discipline/area: Multidisciplinary
Published by: Public Domain, Inc.
Chief Editor: Robert R. Cheatham


Public Culture

Overview: “An interdisciplinary journal of cultural studies...provides a forum for the discussion of the places and occasions where cultural, social, and political differences emerge as public phenomena…written by artists, activists, and both well-established and younger scholars, from across the humanities and social sciences...”
Discipline/area: Cultural Studies
Published by: University of Chicago Press
Editor: Elizabeth A. Povinelli


TDR: The Drama Review

Overview: “This journal of performance studies is a forum for writing all kinds of performances in their aesthetic, historical, social, economic, political, and theoretical contexts.”
Discipline/area: Theater, Performance Art
Published by: MIT Press Journals
Founding Editor: Richard Schechner


Theatre Journal

Overview: “For over five decades, TJ’s broad array of scholarly articles and reviews have earned it an international reputation as one of the most authoritative and useful publications of theatre studies available today...features social and historical studies, production reviews, and theoretical inquiries that analyze dramatic texts and production.”
Discipline/area: Theater
Published by: Johns Hopkins University Press
Editor: Susan Bennett


Theatre Topics

Overview: “The first theater publication devoted to issues of concern to practitioners, Theater Topics focuses on performance studies, dramaturgy, and theatre pedagogy.”
Discipline/area: Theater and Performance Art
Published by: Johns Hopkins University Press
Chief Editor: Harley Erdman


TPQ: Text and Performance Quarterly

Overview: “Explores and advances the study of performance as a social, communicative practice; manuscripts addressing performance and the performative in a wide range of perspectives and methodologies, including the historical, rhetorical, feminist, ethnographic, psychological/psychoanalytical, political, and aesthetic are welcome. Likewise, all sites of performance, from the classical stage to popular culture, to the practices of everyday life, critically and interpretively engaged, are considered.”
Discipline/area: Performing Arts, Performance Art
Published by: National Communication Association (Backissues available 518-537-4700)
Chief Editor: not known, but TPQ is a peer-reviewed journal. Details, Bill Eadie (



Overview: “Multilingual site (English and Spanish) for critical discourse and artistic production dislocated and detached from fixed geographical boundaries.”
Discipline/area: Visual Art, Multidisciplinary
Published by: Passim, Inc.
Editorial Director: Sandra Antelo-Suarez


The Yale Journal of Criticism

Overview: “Publishes works of interest to readers in the humanities, irrespective of field or period; includes scholarly articles, original art, review essays, polemical interventions, and conference and symposium papers.”
Discipline/area: Humanities
Published by: Johns Hopkins University Press
Editorial Chairman: Peter Brooks