Proposed themes for this year’s upcoming issues




Vol. 31 No. 3 – Early October, 2018

Theme: Cinema – Beyond the Pale
Submission due date: August 15, 2018

Theme description

The fact that Montréal Serai has been inherently engaged in the practice of reviewing and critiquing cinema requires very little assertion. A quick sampling scan (see below) – to our own surprise – shows that we have covered a lot of territory. Some of our contributors have become well-known film-makers and actors and have made excellent documentaries themselves. Maya Khankhoje, Carlos Ferrand, Pietro Ferrua, Mirella Bontempo, the late Ozzie Bartolo, Federico Hidalgo, Mark Krupa, Julian Samuel and others have covered film festivals and done interviews with cinéastes and artists.

For our third issue of the year, we have invited Dipti Gupta, film lecturer and festival organizer in Montréal, to curate the theme “Cinema – Beyond the Pale.” Dipti has done extensive research on films in India and elsewhere.

The pale, as a noun, has nothing do with the adjective used in Procol Harum’s 1967 iconic rock song, A Whiter Shade of Pale. It has to do with a method of fencing off people, land or ideas by building wooden fences to keep away outsiders, undesirables or the unknown. The best-known examples were in Ireland, but the concept of the pale also applied in English colonial settlements in France, and in Imperial Russia where the Pale was used as a way of keeping the Jewish population enclosed and contained in a limited area.

A pale is a sharp wooden stave that is roped together to make a fence. To keep out renegades, renegade filmmakers and out-of-the-box thinkers. To take an alternate view, away from the clichés that abound in Hollywood and Bollywood, and on HBO and Netflix. But sometimes even those very sources produce some really extraordinary films.

Reviewers, filmmakers, actors and directors are invited to contribute. Montréal is an international hub for the zaniest and most intelligent film festivals, and special mention must be made of the indefatigable crew at Cinema Politica at Concordia University.



Vol. 31 No. 4 – Early January, 2019

Theme: The Literature Issue: Decolonizing Voices
Submission due date: November 15, 2018

Theme description

This will be our annual year-end literary issue. As always, we have tried to plug in a thematic statement to enable our contributors to focus in on areas that have always been our concern. This particular theme makes us feel at home, as it highlights what we have been doing all of our 32 years of existence: deconstructing, encouraging parallel voices to be heard, and bringing up narratives that have either been shelved by the mainstream or have simply never been experienced by the majoritarian community. If you look at your bedside table and happen to have a stack of books that you’ve read or plan to read (that pile gets bigger!), you will notice some bestsellers, some recommended by the book clubs you are a member of, some books suggested by friends, and a small smattering of incredibly obscure books that somehow landed up there.

There is a reason for that. We live in a community where diversity, complex historical antecedents, the idea of storytelling, the exchange of ideas, and even scientific, mathematical and linguistic or anthropological nuances developed over centuries were simply set aside, ignored, pooh-poohed and essentially butchered by the hammer of the colonial process.

The idea of colonization and the occupation and deliberate destruction of the cultures of the non-Western world were simply to enable the colonization process. The fact that colonization happened in Asia, Africa and the Americas does not seem to be featured prominently in the literary works of Canadian writers or those who have a progressive interest in the rest of the world. The imperial process does not allow for that. Unless there is a sudden surge in identarian sell-ability, publishers tend to hanker over exile angst, exoticizing the “East” and then promoting utter distraction rather than the voices of the poor, of Indigenous cultures, and of the disinherited from colonized nations. We are therefore looking for poetry, essays and film reviews portraying decolonizing voices. Please see the submission details below.



Montréal Serai is always soliciting new ideas and materials from outside its geographical purview, on arts/culture/politics. Articles should be well written and not exceed 3,000 words.

We accept reviews of all kinds, covering arts, politics, culture, music, literature and film. We also accept political cartoons. We’re open to new information and regard every submission with the utmost respect.

Montréal Serai respects access copyright understanding on intellectual property rights. We do not publish without the permission and acquiescence of the writer.

See Submission Guidelines below.

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Snail mail:
Montréal Serai
P.O. Box #72,
Succursale NDG
Montréal, Québec
Canada H4A 3P4


Submission Guidelines:

Montréal Serai welcomes your own original, unpublished submissions of art, cartoons, prose, poetry or fiction. Written submissions may not exceed 3,000 words. Audio and audio-visual components are welcome.  Submissions published on your personal blog may be considered if you identify them as such and provide appropriate links.  Serai reserves the right to reject any submission that does not meet its standards or mandate, and will not entertain violent or sexually explicit material or material that does not respect human dignity or that offends minorities on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, disability or personal beliefs.

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Please note that once a submission is accepted, all efforts will be made to respect the spirit of formatting, spacing, etc. used in the original submission. However, these aspects cannot be guaranteed. The online layout of a particular piece is viewer-dependent and relies (dynamically) on aspects such as screen size, resolution, and other factors. If a specific layout is absolutely necessary, we recommend that the author provide a high-resolution image of the text with the appropriate layout.

Montréal Serai is a digital magazine with universal, free access. Readers may request a free subscription for advance notifications. Although the editorial team volunteers its time, we make it our priority to pay contributors with the remainder of funds from grants from the Canada Council for the Arts (after operating expenses are taken care of). Ex gratia honoraria are provided at the discretion of the editorial board for accepted and published work.

Although we welcome experiments in language and deliberate lapses, contributions will be subject to rigorous standards of editing.

Submission deadlines are stated above. Publication begins at the beginning of April, July, October, and January. Additional articles might be posted in booster issues depending on submissions received.

Kindly send an author’s biography of no more than 25 words. By submitting via email or snail mail, the author is deemed to have accepted Montréal Serai’s terms and conditions. Snail-mail submissions must be signed by the author, otherwise they will not be entertained.  Prior publication of all or part of the submitted work must be explicitly stated in the submission.


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Copyright on original pieces published at Montréal Serai remains with the contributor, with two provisos:

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