City Tech Announces New Journal, NANO: New American Notes Online

City Tech is pleased to announce the publication of a new online, peer-reviewed journal: NANO: New American Notes Online,, an interdisciplinary journal founded and edited by Professor Sean Scanlan, who teaches in City Tech’s English Department. “NANO’s goal is to invigorate humanities discourse by publishing brief, peer-reviewed reports with a fast turnaround enabled by new technologies,” says Scanlan.

The journal welcomes original articles from all fields in the humanities, particularly literature, film, history, music, rhetoric, philosophy, art, and digital humanities. NANO also encourages submissions from other disciplines that include: psychology, sociology, engineering, various fields of technology, the hard sciences, and business. Each issue focuses on a special topic designed to encourage new interpretations. The theme of Issue 1 was Navigation; Issue 2 focused on Mystery, the Unknown, Surprise; Issue 3: Peer Review; and Issue 4: Competition and Play.

NANO sets itself apart from other peer-reviewed journals in three ways. First, the journal focuses on shorter articles (less than 3,500 words) and encourages the use of images, sound, and film for the presentation of ideas. Second, the journal prides itself on quick response time and provides peer review comments to all articles that reach the second step of the peer-review process. Third, NANO is both open source and open access. In short, the journal is committed to public education, to the ethos of general education, and to sharing information with scholars and readers around the world who may not have access to university library holdings.

NANO recently published Issue 5: Digital Humanities—Public Humanities, the largest issue so far. One highlight of this special issue is the article “The Leimert Phone Company,” which explores how a team of artists and scholars repurposed old public telephone booths into micro community centers that now provide access to cultural preservation, city service information, and business opportunities. Another highlight is one scholar’s attempt to examine the “closed” aspect of popular videogame consoles. Specifically, Professor Nina Belojevic hacks into Nintendo Entertainment Systems to try to reconfigure play potential. She examines the cultural and economic costs of manufacturing video games that contain rare-earth elements as well as the meaning behind attempts to redirect and circumvent the manufacturers’ aims to restrict play to one set of rules.

Issue 6 focuses on the topic of Cartography and Narrative and is slated for publication this fall. Of particular note is that two journals are publishing on this special theme: NANO is handling the multimedia articles while the veteran print journal Cartographic Journal is curating the text-based articles.

Scanlan is currently setting up an internship program for NANO, which will more fully bring the journal into the halls of City Tech. And, along with two assistant editors, Professor Ruth Garcia and Professor Rebecca Devers (both from the English Department), Scanlan seeks additional assistants and advisors who are open to new ideas, new ways of sharing scholarship, and new relationships across departments.

For more information about NANO, contact Professor Scanlan at: