CFP: Crafting, Hacking, and Making: DIY Pasts, Presents, and Futures

Edited by Melanie Swalwell, David Murphy, and Maria B. Garda

A burgeoning interest in do-it-yourself production is evident around the world, especially in regions that manufacturing industries have abandoned. But while the contemporary Maker Movement would like us to accept its revolutionary-inspired rhetoric of rupture and discontinuity (Hatch 2014), we believe that the current enthusiasm for do-it-yourself production is not without precedent. Existing on the peripheries of industrial production, crafting, hacking, and making movements have emerged in different historical moments and localities in various political and cultural contexts. But instead of inciting comparative analysis, movements have often been defined in opposition to ‘passive’ forms of consumption that a do-it-yourself ethos resists. By contrast, we would like to encourage analyses attending to the diversity of crafting, hacking, and making practices, and intersections and variations that entangle and distinguish communities, networks, and scenes, so an appreciation of similarities and differences can add new perspectives to the discourses surrounding the DIY phenomena.

Furthermore, it is clear that important practices have been excluded from a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics discourse that is often blind to cultural difference on the one hand, and a Cultural and Media Studies discourse that is often unwilling or unprepared to deal with engineering on the other. Existing within this gap is an opportunity to bring forgotten histories into conversation with present-day practices—and an opportunity to examine contemporary and historic intersections where the analogue and the digital overlap—as hacking-inspired methods are no longer specific to digital culture (Cramer, 2014), while digital culture is reigniting an interest in craft (Luckman, 2015). These shifts invite criticism and optimism and a chance to reflect on the significance (or insignificance) of DIY acts, while also remembering (or forgetting) crafting, hacking, and making presents, futures, and pasts.

This anthology aims to bring together constellations of do-it-yourself production and culture. Proposals for papers that explore any aspect of crafting, hacking, and making, or parallel practices on the peripheries of current discourse will be considered. Both contemporary and historical case studies are welcome, and dialogue between the past, present, and future is encouraged.

If you are interested in contributing, please submit an abstract (no longer than 300 words minus citations, a title, and a short biography) to by August 1st, 2018. Notifications of acceptance will be sent by September 1, 2018, January 31, 2019 is the deadline for full chapter submissions, and if you have any questions they can be emailed to

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

19th and 20th Century Arts and Crafts Movements

20th and 21st Century Home Improvement Movements

20th and 21st Century Phreaking, Cracking, and Hacking Movements

State-Sponsored Crafting, Hacking, and Making Initiatives

Crafting, Hacking, and Making Industries and Brands

Tape Trading and Bootlegging

DIY Sound Studies, DIY Cinema Studies, DIY Comic Studies

Pirate and Citizen Band Radio

Piracy and Privacy Parties

Homebrew Software Production


Post-Digital Aesthetics

Noise, Glitch, Internet, and Post-Internet Art

Zines and Self-Publishing

DIY Investment and Finance

Independent Crafting and Craftivism

Independent/Alternative Digital Game Production  

Independent/Alternative Analogue Game Production

Modding and Meta-Game Activities

Life-hacking and Bio-hacking

Open Source Software, Hardware, and Science

Crafting, Hacking, and Making the Internet of Things

Crafting, Hacking, and Making Economies

Tractor Hacking

Hacklabs, Fablabs, and Feminist Hackerspaces

Makerspaces, Festivals, and Fairs

Micro Manufacturing and 3D Printing

Crafting, Hacking, and Making the Local