The idea of Slayage was born in January of 2001 as David Lavery and Rhonda V. Wilcox considered over one hundred and forty proposals submitted for possible inclusion in Fighting the Forces: What's at Stake in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Rowman & Littlefield, 2002). Lavery and Wilcox learned, also, that two other collections of essays on Buffy were in the works. It seemed obvious that there existed a not-soon-to-be-exhausted international critical and scholarly interest in the series. With Whoosh! The Journal of the International Association of Xenoid Studies in mind as a model, Slayage was born.
In the winter of 2009, beginning with Volume 7, Issue 3, Slayage became The Journal of the Whedon Studies Association rather than The Online International Journal of Buffy Studies. In the summer of 2015, the name was once again changed to better reflect the nature of the journal: The Journal of Whedon Studies. The journal publishes analysis of work by Joss Whedon and his creative collaborators and associates.
In 2004 the first Slayage Conference on Buffy the Vampire Slayer was held in Nashville, Tennessee, and was hosted by Middle Tennessee State University. Now known as the Slayage Conference on the Whedonverses, the gathering occurs biennially and has met at Gordon College (2006), Henderson State University (2008), Flagler College (2010), the University of British Columbia (2012), California State University - Sacramento (2014), and Kingston University in England (2016), and the University of North Alabama (2018). The next conference will be held at Dawson College in Montreal, Quebec, in the summer of 2020.
In addition to Whedon staples such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, Serenity, Dollhouse, The Cabin in the Woods, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, the Avengers films, and the upcoming series The Nevers, Slayage hopes to generate increased discussion around the wider oeuvre of Joss Whedon and those who have collaborated with him. That is, we encourage investigation into the ways the Whedon influence, themes, and aesthetic have formed and informed the TV, film and pop-cultural landscape. Such topics might include work on current projects developed by Whedon collaborators such as Jane Espenson (Once Upon a Time, Warehouse 13), Tim Minear (American Horror Story, Feud), David Greenwalt (Grimm), and others. Essays arguing for Whedon’s influence on projects such as Supernatural, Veronica Mars, Teen Wolf, and Jessica Jones, to name a few, are also welcome.
We welcome a variety of approaches and critical frameworks, including but not limited to: historical, cultural, commercial, production-related, aesthetic, generic, and thematic. We invite explorations from various theoretical perspectives.
A quarterly until 2012, Slayage is now published twice a year—and will continue to be, for as long as interest warrants. The journal is a blind peer-reviewed, MLA-indexed publication
Watcher Junior: The Undergraduate Journal of Whedon Studies
As colleges and universities include the work of Joss Whedon in courses on media studies, history, psychology, religion, race and gender studies, cultural studies and more students continue to produce Whedon scholarship at the undergraduate level. Slayage provides a forum for publishing graduate and professional scholarship. In its tenth year of publication Watcher Junior, a peer-reviewed online journal, remains committed to doing the same for undergraduate work in Whedon studies.
Edited by Brenna Wardell and Deborah Overstreet, Watcher Junior is published twice a year, April and October. The journal is sponsored by both The Whedon Studies Association and the University of Maine at Farmington.