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Reviewed by: Cheryl LaGuardia, Research Librarian, Widener Library, Harvard University
Although titled, Journal of Arts and Humanities, the front matter for this journal states that it focuses on “theoretical and empirical research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Science…, [welcoming] the submission of manuscripts [in the] following broadly defined areas: Anthropology, Communication studies, Cultural studies, Development studies, Education, History, Industrial relations, International relations, Journalism, Languages, Law, Library science, Linguistics, Literature, Novels and short stories, Philosophy, Poetry, Religion, Teaching, [and the] Visual and performing arts.” I’m frankly puzzled to find Industrial relations and International relations listed as Arts and Humanities subjects. The journal states that it “publishes original research, creative work, and critical discourse on traditional, contemporary, and popular issues in arts and issues in the field of humanities studies” and that contributions can be “in the form of conceptual or theoretical approaches, case studies or essays in the field of humanities…, [or] in the field of arts [they] may include artists’ writings, critical essays, historical documentation, interviews, performance texts and plays and book review. [sic]”
The journal front matter states that the journal “welcomes submissions in any of the seven categories (i) Research Article (ii) Research Note (iii) Research Essay (iv) Research Commentary (v) Theory and Review Article (vi) Issues and Opinions (regional or global) (vii) Case Report,” but a scan through the past 12 months’ worth of issues (from September 2014 through August 2015) finds only manuscripts labeled, “Articles.” I find no interviews or performance texts in that time period. A closer look at the July 2015 issue, volume 4 number 7, shows the following articles: “Rationality in the Social Mobility Process of Vietnamese Thai,” “Visitor Preference Factors toward Shopping Centres’ Thematic Corridor Study of Gandaria City, Indonesian Shopping Centre,” “Constructing an ‘Outlandish’ Narrative of Self: The Role of Music in Muslim Experience,” “Evaluating the Effect of Lead Time on Quality Service Delivery in the Banking Industry in Kumasi Metropolis of Ghana,” “An Ethical Foreign Policy? Globalism as a Threat to the US National Interest,” “Influence of Parent-Adolescent Communication on Adolescent Peer Relations and Gender Implications,” “The Source of Language Variation among Chagga People in Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania,” and “Muslims in Post-War Sri Lanka: An Opportunity Lost for Conflict Transformation.” Only one, or possibly two, of these articles appear to be in the arts or the humanities, and the quality of writing and research among them is quite uneven.
I think this journal is misnamed; unfortunately, given the lack of any apparent unifying themes or subjects among the materials examined, I can’t suggest an alternative title that would be appropriate. The editors should consider reexamining what they are trying to achieve with this journal, rename it accordingly, and seek and accept content that focuses on their redefined goals.