Call for Book Chapters: "Ritual Interventions: The Importance of the Rite of Passage Today"

Vernon Press invites book chapters for a forthcoming edited volume on the subject of "Ritual Interventions: The Importance of the Rite of Passage Today."

The purpose of this volume is to examine the three-part Rite of Passage model from a plurality of perspectives and with a variety of applications. Scholars in disciplines as diverse as anthropology, psychology, critical studies, musicology, theater, dance, ritual, and performance studies, consciousness, decolonization studies, semiology, narrative, mythology, women’s and LGBTQ+ studies, and beyond, are invited to submit chapters of 5000-8000 words each on the subject of Rites of Passage and their relevance today. Rites of Passage are ritual performances that help an individual through a time of change or into a new social role. The three-part model of the Rite of Passage was formulated by Van Gennep (1960) and has been emulated by multiple authors (Turner, 1974; Scott, 1998; Ivory, 2003). As narrative construction has been put forth as a tool for identity integration (Reese, Yan, Jack, & Hayne, 2010; Fivush, Bohanek, & Marin, 2010; McAdams, 1993), the Rite of Passage, broadly applied, may serve a similar purpose. The implications of an uninitiated, unritualized populace may be individuals who are 1) unprepared to fulfill mature social roles, 2) prone to risky, antisocial behaviors or “counter-ritualizations” (Erikson, 1977), or 3) unable and/or unlikely to criticize or dismantle oppressive structures (Scott, 1998). The completion of the three-part model is necessary for a complete Rite of Passage and an integrated identity, as it is for a complete narrative. While the three-part model suggests a structuralist approach, the purpose of its application more broadly, in a wide variety of disciplines, is to dismantle dominant oppressive structures. Genealogical, post-colonial, post-structuralist, pluralist, and other postmodernist perspectives are invited.

The following essential questions are meant to inspire thinkers toward contributing to this volume, but they do not represent the full scope of possible inquiry:

  • What is the relevance of the Rite of Passage at various life stages?
  • How can music, dance, theater, and performance art inform the Rite of Passage?
  • What is the role of physical space (performance space, ritual space, liminal space) in facilitating a Rite of Passage?
  • What is the implication of a self-created or self-chosen Rite of Passage versus one that has been group-created or inherited?
  • What is the role of intersectionality in an individual’s experience of a Rite of Passage?
  • What is the role of the family unit in the Rite of Passage? What about chosen families beyond the natal group?
  • What is the position of the Rite of Passage against the status quo?
  • What is the political potential of the Rite of Passage? How can it impart the knowledge, strength, or motivation to dismantle oppressive structures, whether physical, cognitive, or social?
  • How can the Rite of Passage avoid capitalist co-optation?


Deadline for submissions: May 31, 2024

Please send submissions to Rachel Bomalaski:



Erickson, E. (1977). Toys and Reasons: Stages in the Ritualization of Experience. New York: W.W. Norton & Co.

Fivush, R., Bohanek, J., & Marin, K. (2010). Patterns of family narrative co-construction in relation to adolescent identity and well-being. In K.C. McLean, M               Pasupathi (eds.), Narrative Development in Adolescence. 45-63.

Ivory, B.T. (2003). A phenomenological inquiry into the spiritual qualities and transformational themes associated with a self-styled rite of passage into                         adulthood. Dissertation Abstracts International. Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences, 62(2-A), 429.

Kristovich, D. (2001). Late adolescents' use of music as transitional space. (Doctoral Dissertation, Chicago Institute for Clinical Social Work). Dissertation                    Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences, 62(8-A), 2883

McAdams, D. (1993). The Stories We Live By: Personal Myths and the Making of the Self. New York: The Guilford Press.

Reese, E. Yan, C., Jack, F., & Hayne, H. (2010). Emerging identities: Narrative and self from early childhood to early adolescence. In K.C. McLean,                             M Pasupathi (eds.), Narrative Development in Adolescence. 23-43.

Scott, D. (1998). Rites of Passage in Adolescent Development: A Reappreciation. Child & Youth Care Forum, 27(5), 317-335.

Turner, V. (1974). From Ritual to Theater: The Human Seriousness of Play. New York City: Performing Arts Journal Publications.

Van Gennep, A. (1960). The rites of passage. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

This proposal is due on June 8th 2024.

Page last updated on January 17th 2024. All information correct at the time, but subject to change.