The International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts (ICFA) is an annual scholarly conference devoted to all aspects of the fantastic (broadly defined) as it appears in literature, film, and the other arts. For many years, the ICFA has been held annually in Orlando, Florida, USA.

Organization and refereeing of academic paper sessions at ICFA is under the direction of Division Heads who are appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Board. 

The 45th International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts  


Guests of Honor: Mary Turzillo and C. E. Murphy  

Guest Scholars: Woppa Diallo and Mame Bougouma Diene 

March 13-16, 2024 

Orlando Airport Marriott Lakeside 

Whimsy, as a genre of fantastic and speculative fiction, celebrates the playfulness, imagination, and the sheer joy of storytelling. It embraces the fantastical, the absurd, and the unconventional, creating worlds where the ordinary collides with the extraordinary. Whimsical narratives often blur the boundaries between reality and fantasy, challenging conventional storytelling norms and inviting readers into a realm of limitless possibilities. This call for papers invites scholars and writers to explore the various facets of whimsy within the genre of fantastic and speculative fiction. 

Topics may address, but need not be limited to:  

Definition and Characteristics of Whimsy

  • examining the defining features and attributes of whimsical literature  
  • identifying key elements that differentiate whimsy from other genres within speculative fiction 
Whimsical Worldbuilding:  
  • analyzing the construction of whimsical worlds and their impact on storytelling  
  • investigating the role of setting, atmosphere, and magical elements in whimsical narratives  
Whimsy and Identity:  
  • exploring how whimsy interacts with themes of gender, race, sexuality, and other aspects of identity  
  • investigating how whimsical narratives challenge traditional social norms and expectations  
Whimsy and Morality:  
  • discussing the ethical dimensions within whimsical storytelling  
  • examining how moral dilemmas are presented and resolved in whimsical narratives  
Whimsical Characters:  
  • analyzing the portrayal of whimsical characters and their significance within the genre  
  • investigating the role of protagonists, antagonists, and supporting characters in whimsy  
Whimsical Subgenres:  
  • exploring whimsy within subgenres of fantastic and speculative fiction, such as magical realism, urban fantasy, or fairy tales  
  • investigating the intersection of whimsy with other genres, like science fiction or horror  
Whimsy and Humor:  
  • examining the relationship between whimsical fiction and humor  
  • analyzing how whimsical narratives employ wit, satire, or irony to engage readers  

                                          We welcome proposals for individual papers and for academic sessions and panels on any aspect of the fantastic, especially those concerning whimsy, in any media. We encourage work from creatives, institutionally affiliated scholars, independent scholars, international scholars who work on the fantastic in languages other than English, and students.  

                                          Proposals not related to the conference theme are also welcome.  

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                                          2024 PRICE LIST

                                          ICFA 45 General Schedule

                                          If you are interested in offering a creative presentation at ICFA or you have questions about the creative track, please contact the Second Vice President, who can be reached here.

                                          Abstract Deadline Extended: November 12, 2023, 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time  

                                          Most attendees present but that is not required to attend the ICFA, nor is membership in the IAFA. However, IAFA membership is required to present at the ICFA

                                          Rules for submitting proposals for academic and creative programming can be found here.

                                          Membership or registration questions can be directed to IAFA Membership & Registration Coordinator through the Contact Page.

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